Last week, I talked about pushing the sales of our books. Whether it is Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, LinkedIn, word of mouth, hiring a PR firm, or the countless other ways to generate interest, what has worked the best for me has been word of mouth and the PR firm. As long as you have a good product represented by some fantastic reviews, word of mouth seems to keep our sales afloat.
Today, I am going to dive deeper into Twitter. I had no idea what Twitter even meant until I attended a publishing seminar led by bestselling author and pitch leaders, David Henry Sterry and Arielle Eckstut. They are both married, to each other, and taught me more in one seminar than I would have learned on my own researching for months.
I also bought their book, The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published: How to Write It, Sell It, and Market It... Successfully. I like to think of this book as my "publishing bible." Whether you are going to self-publish or pursue the traditional route, this reference will lead your passion to a better suited destination. I highly recommend reading it.
During the seminar, Twitter was brought up because of its power and substance not only within the world wide web, but also within its ability to connect people with one another. For example, without Twitter, I would NEVER have met one of my “author besties,” K Sentek. She is a fellow children’s book author who I decided to follow because at the time, she was following one of my favorite children’s authors, Karma Wilson. Without Twitter, I would never have met her or some of my other author friends who have bought my book, provided reviews and have showed incredible support.
Twitter also has the potential to help spread word about our books. But how often do you tweet about your book? Once a day? Once every hour? Once every 30 minutes?
I have yet to sign up for an automated Twitter service which allows me to have more free time for myself instead of going through all of my Twitter notifications, one by one, or copying and pasting my tweets while trying to tweet at least once every hour or so. I know some authors like the automated services so their tweets go out as they schedule them. They can also schedule retweets for other authors and writers who retweet for them.
But do all of these tweets really help the sales of our books? Yesterday, I had 25 people (mostly authors) retweet a link I shared for my children’s book. Normally, I average anywhere from 5 to 30 retweets, depending on how often I have retweeted for them. Even after 25 people retweeted my link and shared it with their followers, not one book! Not one sale.
So what am I doing wrong? I like to think my phrases engender interest and are enticing to my followers and fellow retweeters' fan base. I always say something captivating or endearing while trying to reach the types of readers who will purchase books that rhyme and have powerful messages, beautiful illustrations, and memorable storylines.
One way I have found helpful was to reach out to my target audience. Since my children’s book centers around outdoor play and imagination, I rummage through Twitter land, trying to stumble upon the hidden treasures who are advocates for nature and the great outdoors. Although this can be quite time consuming, it has proved to place my children’s book into the hearts and hands of this group. Again, finding these people can be a pain, especially since a lot of them hardly check there notifications as much as we do.
I like to believe there are still children and adults who value outdoor play and imagination rather than having their minds constantly stimulated by technology or video games. My school author visits always provoke an appreciation for imagination and outdoor play which is why I will continue to use word of mouth and recommendations to help my business grow.