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Tweeting my way to the top

June 24th, 2011 · No Comments · Blog

In the great Twitter vs. Facebook debate, I fall squarely on the Facebook side of the fence. I know there’s a place for both of them, and some people make extensive use of both. You almost have to if you want to do a proper job of marketing anything these days. But Facebook is a little more personal to me, whereas Twitter seems to be too noisy.

Maybe it’s the threshold for friending/following that makes the difference. Anyone can follow anyone on Twitter. And for the most part no one will complain if you follow them. They want an audience, right? Isn’t that why they’re there? Of course, there’s often an implied tit-for-tat, where I follow you hoping you follow me back, whether I know you or not. It’s only good etiquette, or maybe good karma. But it makes it awfully hard to weed through the clutter when you go check your tweet stream/feed/whatever the hell you call it.

I’m much less likely to friend someone on Facebook if I don’t know them or at least have some tangential connection to them. Of course, I’m “friends” with a bunch of people I barely knew in high school and a handful of people I’ve never met and never will, but for the most part, I actually want to hear what’s going on with the people whose posts I read every day. My entire family is on there, and for better or worse, Facebook has become a primary communication medium for us.

But this non-Twitter fanatic now has two Twitter accounts, after setting up a new one tonight to focus on my writing and this site. My pre-existing one was originally set up for a site I ran a couple years back called Hardball Cooperative and later torqued to suit my needs in my life as a baseball book reviewer. I don’t tweet a lot there, mostly just when I post a new review on my site (http://baileysbaseballbookreviews.com), but I didn’t think it was entirely cricket to start using it for publicizing The Greatest Show on Dirt or talking about my other projects. I’m an opt-in kind of guy, and the people following that account didn’t sign up for this stuff. I’d hope they’d be interested, but I don’t want to make assumptions. You know what they say about assuming.

So here I am, using my Friday night writing slot to create a new Twitter persona. I immediately followed several dozen folks, then started checking e-mail to see if anyone reciprocated. So far I’m the only one. Early days.

Social media is generally cited as one of the key tools available for any author, and for those going the self-published route it’s an absolute necessity. So I’ll be spending a bit more time on Twitter in the upcoming months and probably inviting some more non-acquaintances into my circle of Facebook friends. As long as that doesn’t cut too far into my actual writing time, I’m okay with it. I guess I don’t have much choice. Of course, I’m going to have to sharpen my wit to come up with something intelligent to say in 140 characters or less. Wish me luck.


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