Using Your Time Wisely on Facebook and Twitter

Thursday, June 30, 2011
You won’t believe how much time you can spend on a social media site if you don’t set a time limit, say 30 minutes a day at the most. One of the problems is you can easily get distracted by personal messages, tweets, and status reports. For example, you might spend 30 minutes commenting on your best friend’s photo album of her daughter’s 4th birthday party instead of finding links about writing and posting them to your Facebook page. I agree that Facebook is great for keeping in touch with friends and family, but you can make it a point to do these personal interactions on the weekend IF you have a limited amount of time for writing during the week.

So, what are ways to use your time wisely on Facebook?

•    Set up a fan page—this would be a page on Facebook where people could join and become a fan of your work
•    Invite people to an event—events can be real world events such as book signings or conferences. They can also be cyber events such as blog giveaways.
•    Update your status to say something about your writing career.
•    Find other writers and comment on their statuses or "like" their fan page.
•    Post links of writing articles or blog posts that you find helpful.
•    Write notes about writing contests, issues you are having with your novel, or a hot topic such as book covers.

What are ways to use your time wisely on Twitter?
•    Take part in one of the groups/chats such as #amwriting, #writegoal, or #kidlitchat.
•    Tweet about your recent blog post. Make sure to write a headline with your link that catches people’s attention such as: “Here’s a book that kids will talk about long after they’re done reading it” and then attach the link.
•    Find other authors’ and writers’ promotional tweets and retweet them. If you know writers personally, then do an exchange. Ask them to retweet information to their followers, and you will do the same for them.
•    Go to people’s links that you see on Twitter and leave comments on blogs. Always, always, always leave either your blog’s URL or your Twitter ID, so these people can find you and repay your favor. 

Social networking is fun, but it can also be useful for your career--you can network and promote--and it costs nothing but your time. So, learn to use it wisely! 

post by Margo L. Dill; Margo will be teaching the online course, Social Networking for Writers in the WOW! Classroom, starting September 14 for 4 weeks. For more information, to see a syllabus, or to sign up, visit the classroom here.

photo by Candie_N


Meg Moseley said...

Thank you! This is very helpful. I shouldn't still be such a newbie at this stuff...but I am.

Margo Dill said...

Meg, you are welcome. :) Newbies and oldies need help with this. It can be such a timewaster but also so useful for marketing and networking.


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