Avoid the hard-sell
Social media isn’t built to sustain a consistent hard-sell. You’ll quickly turn people away if your entire platform is built around sending missives about your book and why people should buy it. Instead, really investigate the feeds of other successful authors. If you’re a novelist, look up your favorite writers and see what they’re tweeting. If you’re an entrepreneur, take a look for other writers, as well as other entrepreneurs, and see what they’re posting.
You’ll see, as you research, that the most successful self-publishing authors on Twitter are engaging. They share parts of their life with their audiences, respond to their fans, and aren’t afraid to have conversations (that is, after all, why they call it social media!).
You are a brand
It’s easy to think of yourself as just another person on Twitter, but – as an author – you need to shift your thinking. You’re not JUST a person, you’re a brand. With every tweet you send, you’re supporting your personal platform that will – hopefully – result in book sales. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t make Twitter your own platform to just be an individual, but – instead – that you should think about how your individuality engenders you to your audience… and encourages people to buy your books.
Think about ratios
Occasionally, take a step back and think about your social media on a meta level. Look at your tweets, your mentions, your links, and more and figure out what your percentages are. Are you tweeting 50% about your life, 20% about your book, 10% mentions, and 20% links to other interesting things online? It’s probably time to think about spending more time responding to other people.
Remember that the numbers aren’t everything
After your done thinking about numbers, remind yourself that numbers aren’t everything in the social media game. Having a lot of followers isn’t as powerful as having a small number of engaged followers. If most of your followers are invested in your message, you’ll find that they share your tweets more freely, becoming dedicated book-buying fans much more quickly than if you’re simply amassing lots of people to boost your social media appearance.
Give it time
When you’re working with social media to sell books, it can get discouraging. Don’t let it. A devoted presence on Twitter takes time to build. Enjoy the ride and make valuable connections along the way.