Book Update

A guide for writers with or without published work. A comprehensive resource that every writer should have in their library in order to learn how to publish, promote, and market themselves on the Internet.

Is your book project ready for the next E-Revolution?

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Fw: [Book Marketing Expert] Twitter: A Beginner's Guide

A newsletter all about SUCCESSFUL publishing and POWERFUL promotion.
April 2, 2009 Issue #192
in this issue
-- Note From The Editor
-- Who's Talking About You?
-- Twitter: A Beginner's Guide
-- Self Magazine
-- AME-University: Book Marketing, Publishing, and Internet Marketing classes
-- Blogging Isn't a Hobby - It's Big Business
-- Book Bits and Bites
-- Check out The Authors Show
-- Do I Really Need A Press Release?
-- Are you Marketing to Libraries?
-- Share This
-- Check Out The Publishing Insiders
-- AME in the news
-- Now You Should Promote Your Book
-- Reader tip: Get Focus!
-- Ways to Buzz Your Book!
-- Twitter Tip - Twitter Counter
-- Twitter Tip - Dear Tweetie
-- Reader Tip!
-- ------------------------------------------------------------
Penny C. Sansevieri, Editor penny@amarketingexpert.com

You are receiving this newsletter compliments of Author Marketing Experts, Inc. To opt out, please scroll down to the bottom of this newsletter.

Note From The Editor
Welcome to another issue of the Book Marketing Expert Newsletter!
Dear Author,

So what's all the tweeting about? Well it's called Twitter and it's huge, so big in fact that major news stations are gleaning news stories on Twitter, and just about everywhere you turn everyone's talking about tweets and tweeting. If you're ready to get on the Twitter bandwagon you'll love this week's article. It's a start up guide to getting a footprint on one of the most powerful social networking sites we've ever seen. And if you follow me on Twitter I have scads of Twitter tips and hints to help rock your Twitter campaign!
I was in New York last week at the Publishing Business Expo and it was a fantastic event. While I was in New York I got the opportunity to go to the Poets & Writers dinner at the Ritz Carlton at the tip of Manhattan. It was a stunning and star-studded event with such amazing writers as Nelson DeMille, Wally Lamb, Mary Higgins Clark and Candice Bushnell. There's an amazing energy in the air with all that talent and I was honored to be a part of it.
Wishing you continued publishing success,

Penny, Paula, Susan, Alex, Nancy and everyone at Author Marketing Experts, Inc.
Follow me on Twitter: http://twitter.com/Bookgal.
P.S. Have you been wanting to dip your toe in Internet marketing but aren't sure where to get started? We have just launched a series of effective, innovative, and super-affordable marketing programs. Send an email to: bookmarketingonabudget@getresponse.com to find out more!
P.P.S. Check out our blog!

We offer great tips and insights, such as: 'Truth Telling Online:'

Who's Talking About You?
Wondering who's talking about you? While I love Google Alerts this is one to consider, too: http://www.WhosTalkin.com is a social media search engine. All search results include current mentions on websites, blogs, social media posts, basically anything online. The results are also shown in chronological order, which is often more helpful than Google Alerts, which tends to filter out of date results too.

Twitter: A Beginner's Guide
There's a hot new trend going on right now and it's called micro-blogging. So what's a micro-blog? And moreover, what's Twitter? Twitter is a micro-blogger platform that allows users to create entries that are only 140 characters in length. These entries are referred to as "tweets". Originally designed to keep friends and family up to date on what you're doing, Twitter can also be a great place to share your latest book project, promotional ideas as well as interacting with fellow tweets (folks who twitter) and writers. And yes, you can have a blog and a Twitter page. I have both but I feed my blog into my Twitter site so that my Twitter page gets updated each time I add new content to my blog. There's an easy application to add your blog feed to Twitter, it takes just minutes to do. Head on over to: Twitterfeed, http://twitterfeed.com/. Don't feel bad if the first time you go to Twitter it seems like a mess of conversation, most people feel confused when they first enter Twitter-land and many don't see the point.
When I made my first entrance into micro-blogging none of it made sense to me. It seems a bit useless to be honest but then I got the hang of it and saw the real benefit to having and managing a Twitter account. That's really the key. Much like any social media tool we've discussed it's more than just having an account: you have to manage it too. But give yourself a little time on Twitter before you give up on it, at some point it'll either all make sense or it won't. Either way you're only out a few hours and, perhaps, a few informational tweets. Here's a quick start up guide to getting into the Twitterverse today:
1) To sign up for a Twitter account just go to www.twitter.com and complete their short sign up form. Accounts are free of course, you just have to fill out their form. Remember to brand yourself! This is important. Once you create a Twitter account you can't go back and change your name so find something that works for you. Maybe it's fictionwriter or businesswriter or whatever you want. My Twitter page is @bookgal, (note that all Twitter names are preceded by an @ when referenced on the site; you can also find me at http://twitter.com/bookgal) this is fun play on words for what I do (and what I love). I don't recommend that you use an underscore (so stay away from Michael_the_writer) since underscores can be tough to remember, and if someone is trying to tweet to you from their cell phone or blackberry those underscore keys can be tricky.
2) The email address you use for Twitter is important. Because of the nature of frequent communication on this site I recommend that you use an email that you check daily. Opportunities abound on Twitter and they're usually in the form of direct messages (DM) which you'll get notified of in your email account.
3) Get rid of the brown square: no one wants to follow an ugly brown square (which is the default picture Twitter gives you when you sign up) so be sure and upload a picture of yourself or whatever logo you want associated with your Twitter page and brand. Before you do this though check out some of the other pictures folks have used and see what resonates. Because you're easily branded to your picture on Twitter I don't recommend changing it once you've uploaded it. Also, the picture can't be too complex, you want to be able to see it small which is how most of the avatars show up.
4) All about you: don't forget to add your bio and web site. It's important to identify yourself on this site and remember if your Twitter followers want to know more about you they're likely to click on the bio info to get more background on you.
Now you're ready to start tweeting!

Once you have a Twitter account you can immediately enter into the conversation. You can also keep up with other people's tweets by "following" them. Their micro-blog entries will show up on your Twitter home page so you can easily keep track of them. You can also be notified by phone (text message) when they add a tweet. You can twitter from anywhere, even your phone. I've been known to twitter from my blackberry.
Why on Earth Would you Want to Twitter?

When Twitter first started, people were a little perplexed and, as I mentioned before, many first time Tweets just don't get it. I mean why on earth would you want to blog in 140 characters? Well since the site emerged in 2006, it's grown enormously in popularity. With Twitter pages from sites like CNN and every one of the political candidates, the site's popularity can't be overstated. Nor can its applications for the future. Also, even if you don't have a ton of people following your tweets, keep in mind that Twitter search sites are popping up everywhere. This means that if you tweet using keywords that matter to your reader/market, you could be found and followed! For one such search site check out: http://summize.com/ (there are numerous other ways to search and new ones popping up all the time). Also, if you're trying to gauge the popularity of a certain word or phrase and how often it's being used or referred to, you can head on over to Tweet Volume and find out, http://www.tweetvolume.com/. Just plug in your search term or terms and up will pop a list of results!
They key with Twitter isn't to land on the site and say "What can this site do for me" but rather ask yourself, "What can I do for the folks on this site?" For example, when I started Twittering on other helpful blogs and websites and linking to my own articles that I'd syndicated on the 'Net my followers doubled and tripled on a daily basis. When I plug in my keywords and respond a few times a day to questions people pose on Twitter and offer helpful advice, my followers increase again. One of the other things I did on the site was log onto Socialtoo.com and used the site to autofollow anyone who follows me, this site also sends a welcome message to everyone with a free download of Twitter tips. This helps me capture email addresses who will then become a part of our email newsletter readership.
Twitter Tricks

There's a little something on Twitter called @replies, these are replies written to a specific person. So, for example if someone were commenting on one of my tweets they might say "I liked that link @bookgal" and that will immediately pop up on my @replies Twitter page. You should always (or whenever possible or appropriate) respond to @replies.
Hash tags: this # (hashtag) symbol is a great way to bring even more exposure to your topic, especially something that's making the news. Recently there was a lot of dialog on Twitter about #queryfail, which was a site dedicated to posting the worst query letters. If you post a tweet on Twitter and decide to hashtag it, meaning you put a # before the keyword, you could explode the topic on Twitter if enough people are searching for it.
Repeat, repeat: because there's so much noise on Twitter it's ok to repeat your tweets. I will generally repeat them once a week or every two weeks depending on the nature of the post. I use a service called Postlater.com to recycle and repurpose content on Twitter. Let's face it, there's only so much you can see in a day so when you really start to build followers they may not get to all your posts, reposting and repeating is ok, just don't overdo it.
Retweeting: also called RT - this is a cool way to engage and connect with others in your market. If you see a post you like RT it, it's easy to do via Tweetdeck.com which I'll describe more in the next paragraph.
Engaging on Twitter

One thing that's important to note about Twitter is that while it's great for sharing info, it's also all about personal connections which is why I encourage you to respond to @replies and DM's. Join in the conversation, start a conversation or answer someone's question. There's a lot of debate about whether to follow everyone that follows you but I always do, not just out of courtesy but if they've followed me, they are likely in my industry and may at some point have a question. That's where Tweetdeck.com comes in. This nifty little program gives you a much more global overview of your Twitterverse. You can show all your @replies, DM's but you can also do searches based on keywords or # hashtags. That way, whenever a question pops up you can answer, it's easily spotted.
What on Earth will you Talk about?

You know I didn't know either when I first started, it was really up to me to figure out what my followers wanted and in my case, they wanted information. Lots of it. So I gave them what they wanted. Once you figure out what your followers want you'll find your stride on Twitter. Maybe you're just sharing insights about the writing life or publishing information, helping other writers. Does this sell books? Sure it does. Helping others will no doubt spotlight what you do as well so don't make it all about you. If you're still confused about what to talk about consider this. Let's say you're at a cocktail party, would you walk up to a group of people and say "Hi, my name is Sam and my book is awesome, please buy it?" I didn't think so. Your Internet conversations should be viewed as a cocktail party/networking event.

So how do you know it's working? With all the twitter about, well, Twitter, how do you really know this stuff is working? Well, you'll know when you know. Trust me on this. The first few weeks I was on there I thought very little of it, then as I started to engage, interact and see my stuff getting retweeted and then also adding followers like crazy, that's when I realized I was onto something. In the past four months I've gotten four speaking gigs, around ten media and guest blogging opportunities and a dozen new client inquiries. Twitter works if you work it. When you do, well, the results will be worth retweeting about!

Self Magazine
Self Magazine debuted 29 years ago, and was the first to combine coverage of beauty, health, fitness, nutrition, happiness and personal style.
Total circulation is nearly 1.5 million and its primary audience is overwhelmingly college educated women who want to stay informed, get inspired, grow and achieve their personal goals. The magazine has a monthly print edition as well as an active website complete with articles, blogs with advice from Self's experts, newsletters, tips, videos, forums and an online community.
For an idea of topics the magazine covers, the April 2009 issue includes:

* Is the Economy Making You Fat?
* Plus: 12 Smart Bites for Less Than $1
* Feel Good About Your Money: Easy Money Makeovers
* Multifetal Reduction: A New Take on an Important Medical Decision
* Anna Faris: All Kidding Aside
* Free Spa Giveaways
* How Young is Your Skin? Anti-aging advice for All Ages
* Spring's Fashion Hit List
* Salads that Satisfy
Read the magazine and spend some time on the website before pitching. Investigate the forums and online community to see what opportunities present themselves. Lucy Danzinger, the editor-in-chief, has her own blog. There is also an online book club with forums to discuss all kinds of book and reading-related issues.
Self Magazine
4 Times Square
New York, NY 10036
Phone: (212) 286-2860
Fax: (212) 286-6174

AME-University: Book Marketing, Publishing, and Internet Marketing classes
These free teleclasses from AME-University may be just the thing to get your book marketing savvy ramped up! A new class list is coming soon so be sure to check it out!
How to join in:
To sign up or learn more about these classes send an email to author@amarketingexpert.com.

The AME website has a complete class listing for handy reference: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/iclasses.html.
Missed a class? Here's an easy way to catch up on past classes, go to: http://bookmkr.audioacrobat.com/download/49713933- a2ef-a9f6-4f98-376f0809e90b.mp3.

Blogging Isn't a Hobby - It's Big Business
One thing you must be clear about from the beginning: Blogging is not a choice anymore. If you want traffic, attention, great search engine rankings and profits from any kind of presence on the web, you simply must have a blog.
Source: BlogWorldExpo.com

Over 12 million American adults currently maintain a blog
Over 57 million Americans read blogs
1.7 million American adults list making money as one of the reasons they blog
89% of companies surveyed say they think blogs will be more important in the next five years
9% of Internet users say they have created blogs
6% of the entire US adult population has created a blog
Technorati is currently tracking over 70 million blogs
Over 120 thousand blogs are created every day
There are over 1.4 million new blog posts every day
22 of the 100 most popular websites in the world are blogs
37% of blog readers began reading blogs in 2005 of 2006
51% of blog readers shop online
Blog readers average 23 hours online each week.
Source: Backbone Media Business Blogging Survey

83% of corporate bloggers saw a traffic increase to their site
51% took less than 1-2 months from initial concept to launch of blog
88% saw a boost in search engine ranking within 3 months of launch
62% saw an increase in sales within 3 months of launch
Source: Pew Internet & American Life Project

Blog readership is growing among all demographics
Blog readership jumped 58% in 2004 from 17% to 27% of Internet users who said they read blogs daily
27% of Internet users read blogs daily in November 2004
12% of users are aware of RSS, and 4% have knowingly used RSS
Yep! Blogs are a Big Deal! And you as an author or publisher are missing out if you are not participating in this online phenomenon.
Tip offered by Susan Gilbert, AME's Search Engine Marketing Expert and Web 2.0 company owner, http://www.JoomlaJump.com, which provides Social Networking websites and services.

Book Bits and Bites
Book in Progress Beckons Masses: Free installments of the new Robert Kiyosaki book, Conspiracy of the Rich, attracts readers and sign-ups. His website has had 9 million+ hits since it went up in late January. People who sign up on the website can also comment on the book or about our current financial mess and their own financial situation.
New Social Medium for Authors: A site in the beta stage, filedbyauthor, hopes to become the most comprehensive online marketing platform and directory of published author web pages on the Internet. Any author with a book published in the U.S. or Canada can join for free, claim their page, check for accuracy, provide corrections and enhance their pages. Check it out!
And the Winner is: Well, we don't know. Yet. Elle Turner needs help naming her new book - the debut Presley Thurman book will be out summer of 2009 - and the contest deadline is May 30. What is the book about? "Presley Thurman, lover of shoes and Starbucks, thinks she's starting a fun new career as a writer until her subject, a US Senator, is murdered. Presley hasn't seen this much excitement since the spring sample sale at Saks." So be a mensch and see if you can help by visiting her site and suggesting a title!
Sore Losers: That would be us, after voting for and supporting Baboon Metaphysics to win the Diagram Prize as the Oddest Title of the Year. Alas, it was not meant to be. But we won't be good sports and print the winning title here, because you can read all about it. We will give you a hint - it's cheesy. Very cheesy.

Check out The Authors Show
Watch The Authors Show - a web TV show that provides media exposure for authors of all genres. Each webisode brings a new author and book to the ever growing Internet audience that watches TV online.
The Authors Show - hosted by Linda S. Thompson, is the brainchild of Executive Producer Danielle Hampson, who launched the show two years ago to give authors the opportunity to get their work known on a worldwide stage through the power of the Internet. http://www.authorswebtv.com.
And don't forget to check out Penny's appearance: http://www.wnbnetworkwest.com/TVAuthorsPSansevieri.html.

Do I Really Need A Press Release?
Yes, you really need a press release! If you don't send a book to every producer, news station, newspaper, etc., which is NEVER a good idea unless you have zillions of dollars, the press release may serve as your first impression. As a producer, I look for a headline that grabs my attention, so entice me with your creativity. If I'm not touched, intrigued, entertained or wowed in the headline I may not read any further, so make it topical, timely and interesting.
The first paragraph should be informative, interesting and short! Why is your book important or entertaining, why should our audience care and why would you be a great interview? Sell me! Make sure to include the most important points in this paragraph because it may be all I read unless I am looking for your contact information.
In the second, short paragraph tell me about yourself, what you do and why you wrote the book. Be sure to mention the name of your book often, whether in quotes or bold print. The conclusion of the press release needs to give me your contact information, website, email address, etc.
Be bold, be different and stand out! Remember to mention your book often, tie your topic into something in the news or something everyone is discussing. Use quotes, bold print, different colors, etc. throughout the release to get the attention of producers and media bookers.
For more information or to schedule a coaching session just email me at lholka@live.com or call (602) 509-6468.
~Tip offered by Media Veteran Laura Holka, who is the producer of the Pat McMahon Show & a Media Consultant. She can be reached at www.aztv.com or email lholka@live.com.

Are you Marketing to Libraries?
Did you know that in a slow economy libraries tend to get a boost in visitors because folks don't want to spend money on books? In fact I've talked to some libraries that say they have folks lined up to get their new releases. What does this mean to you? Well it means that if your book isn't in a library you might want to see about getting it accepted there.
When I was marketing The Cliffhanger (my first novel) I learned a handy lesson. I dropped a copy of it off to the main library and found that getting it listed there generates automatic orders to any area libraries. Does this work for every city? Not sure, but you won't know till you donate a copy (or three) of your book now will you?
Also, according to ALA (American Library Association) libraries buy nearly $1.8 billion in books annually. If donating a copy to your main library won't work or if they're hesitant to accept it into inventory, then try getting a review in library journals. Check with your local library to see which journals they subscribe to and then go online to find their submission information!

Share This
I'm sure you have seen them, those funny little icons and "Share This" buttons that appear at the bottom of most blog posts and articles. Billions of people are using the "Share This" button to bookmark web content, share content and encourage viral marketing - that is, to get their readers to spread the word, share the love, pass it on!
Where to get it?

There is a fantastic no-cost tool you can use to share your content, it's called: AddThis, www.addthis.com. AddThis offers several options for buttons that you can then insert within your blog or web page (you can also customize a button), they are easy to use, and allow you the option of tracking the activity of your button.
Why this is cool?

And I quote: "The AddThis button spreads your content across the Web by making it easier for your visitors to bookmark and share it with other people, again - and again - and again. This simple yet powerful button is very easy to install and provides valuable Analytics about the bookmarking and sharing activity of your users. AddThis helps your visitors create a buzz for your site and increase its popularity and ranking." Taken from www.addthis.com.
Tip offered by Jeniffer Thompson, author of Web Site WOW, Turn Your Web Site Into Your Most Powerful Marketing Tool, http://www.monkeycmedia.com/web_site_WOW.php. Thompson is also the President of Monkey C Media, a full-service design house offering author web sites, book cover design, book teaser videos and much more, www.monkeycmedia.com.

Check Out The Publishing Insiders
Be in the know and hear what the publishing insiders: Penny Sansevieri, CEO of Author Marketing Experts, Inc. - and her guests - have to offer in terms of tips and insights into the industry! Listen here.

Available for download - The Publishing Insiders March 31 podcast with Special Guest Nigel J. Yorwerth on Foreign Rights: http://tinyurl.com/64sfjj.
Also - Publishing Insiders is now available on iTunes, so you can keep up with the show wherever you go!

AME in the news
The Self Publishing Review ran an interview with Penny Sansevieri, @Bookgal and Paula Krapf, @PaulaatAME this week: http://bit.ly/BQYxW.
And catch Penny on Writing Up a Storm, Gayle Trent's newsletter, where she answers the question: How Can I Get Massive Traffic to My Web Site?

Now You Should Promote Your Book
Looking for inexpensive ways to promote your book? We've just developed and launched an exciting series of budget-friendly programs that still pack a powerful punch! Think you can't market your book in a tough economy? Think again - we've got the answer! Email us for more details: info@amarketingexpert.com.

Reader tip: Get Focus!
Are you frequently distracted by thoughts of what you're going to eat at your next meal, how your life will be different after you've shed some pounds? Linda Bacon's inspirational new book, Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight www.HAESbook.com, provides strategies to allow your weight to naturally settle and help you focus on what really matters. A truly transformative book, supported by solid, research-based evidence.
Tip provided by: Linda Bacon, PhD
(510) 526-6343
Researcher, Professor, Advocate for Health at Every Size and Sustainable Agriculture. Author of Health at Every Size: The Surprising Truth About Your Weight

Ways to Buzz Your Book!
We've designed our products with your success in mind! Regardless of where you are in your publishing journey, we've got a product that will suit your needs. Check out our books, special reports, and our audio programs, all designed to help you reach publishing success!

Twitter Tip - Twitter Counter
Twitter Counter: http://www.twittercounter.com. This is a great site to see where you rank in the Twitterverse. Gives you stats on your profile but others as well. It's also got the top 100 Twitterers to follow! Check me out: http://www.twittercounter.com/compare/bookgal.

Twitter Tip - Dear Tweetie
Dear Tweetie: http://www.deartweetie.com. This is a fun little advice column that uses the Twitterverse to answer people's questions. Here's a tip: if you're an expert shoot a Tweet to @deartweetie with your field of expertise, and when a question comes in that applies, Dear Tweetie will notify you. Another great way to build followers!

Reader Tip!
If you've got a Reader Tip you'd like to share, please send it to penny@amarketingexpert.com with the subject line "reader tip." Submissions should be 75 words or less.

Author Marketing Experts, Inc. is a full-service book marketing, promotion, and publicity company. We serve authors at all stages of marketing and promotion. We offer a full range of packages and services to choose from.
To see a price list or schedule a free consultation, send your e-mail to penny@amarketingexpert.com with the subject line "Author Services Info." You can also visit our Web site at www.amarketingexpert.com.
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