1. #1 by annerallen on March 14, 2013 - 1:47 pm

    Thank you so much for this post, Kristen! I’ve been hammering people on my blog about this too: ONE Twitter identity. TWO Facebook pages, tops (Like page and personal) ONE blog. Put energy into those and you won’t burn yourself out. And more important, you won’t burn out your followers.

    And amen to this: “If we wanted to buy crap we don’t need, we’d be on the Home Shopping Network, not the social network.”

  2. #2 by Natalie Aguirre on March 14, 2013 - 1:49 pm

    Great tips, Kristen. I’m going to join Twitter soon so will use one of the tools you suggest to try to manage it all so I can follow people and be a good friend without sucking all my time into social media. You are so right that this is all about developing relationships, not just getting from people. Love all your social media tips. Thanks for sharing them.

  3. #3 by Susan Jenkins on March 14, 2013 - 1:49 pm

    I remember training lab rats to press a bar for food pellets, and manipulating the rate at which the reward came (i.e. immediately vs. requiring more clicks to get the reward). Sometimes the “subjects” would exhibit almost superstitious types of behavior with yhe apparent intent that repeating the exact action that got the quick payoff last time would cause it to happen again (the rats were actually well-fed and no animals were harmed in the making of our undergraduate psych credits).
    On days I receive a higher response to a blog or tweet, I fight a tendency to freeze frame that moment and try to repeat exactly what was done to garner the feedback. While learning from succescor failure are important, I like the insight from this post that we just need to continue to be ourselves and let our social media influence grow and develop naturally: nature is not always linear, so “fits and starts” are to be expected.

    • #4 by Susan Jenkins on March 14, 2013 - 2:04 pm

      And of course that was supposed to say “success or failure”, not “successor failure”: accuracy is good, and predictive text’s wrong predictions can be interesting!

  4. #5 by Catherine Johnson on March 14, 2013 - 1:49 pm

    Brilliant post! And I chortled at kittens and satan too funny!

  5. #6 by J. F. Smith on March 14, 2013 - 1:52 pm

    I just joined Hootsuite today. It’s making me go crosseyed!

    Definitely agree on the one-Twitter identity, but like Anne (commenter #1) says, I think that Facebook should probably have two – page and personal.

    With such a ridiculously common name – I am actually one letter away from being John Smith – finding my twitter handle was near impossible after I got married. Same thing with my gmail account. I had to go underscore, and keep one letter off, so I turned into jf_smit for Twitter and Instagram. Did what I could!

  6. #7 by shapingdestiny on March 14, 2013 - 1:56 pm

    Thanks Kristen, very much appreciated and answered a few questions for me — especially the multiple personality stuff. What do you do when you didn’t know anything about twitter, chose the wrong handle, and have a bunch of followers? Start over?

  7. #8 by Carl on March 14, 2013 - 1:59 pm

    Great post. I ignore people who want me to do the TruTwit stuff. I tend to unfollow people who send me automated Direct messages.

    I love Tweetdeck, but I have to watch myself. I let social media suck away all of my time, including writing time, and after doing so, I really don’t have much to take away but a lot of useless information. I need to force myself to be disciplined with my Twitter time.

  8. #9 by Melinda Primrose on March 14, 2013 - 2:01 pm

    Great insight! I tried 2 twitter names for a bit, but ended up lost in it all. I was not unique on either. There was no personality on either. I’m down to one now. I got my twitter handle before getting into this author gig. My username is a few pretty obscure references to things in my life. But it’s part of my personality now too.
    Thanks again!
    Melinda

  9. #10 by Hildie McQueen on March 14, 2013 - 2:03 pm

    I’m confused enough with social media, can’t imagine multiple names and using characters, but I have seen it done. Many times I can’t figure out who it is, so you’re right if you don’t know the book, it’s pretty much a lost cause.

  10. #11 by patrickoscheen on March 14, 2013 - 2:20 pm

    One twitter Id is MORE than enough for me. As for fb pages…I don’t think it hurts to offer pages for vey different books. If you are working in multiple genre, one page may not make any sense. As for me? I’m not a very social person.

  11. #12 by Tonette dela Luna (@TonettedelaLuna) on March 14, 2013 - 2:20 pm

    Thank you for the post, Kristen.

    I’m still new to the social media aspect in my writing career, but I’m getting the hang of Hootsuite. Unfortunately, it has a tendency to be a time-suck, so I’m glad when I find posts to read like this one rather than floods of too-frequent automated self promotion. I added someone to a list and got a tweet from them, thanking me. I know it wasn’t automated because my lists were manually created. (But I wouldn’t be surprised anymore if it was automated with tech, nowadays). When I tweeted back, I got no reply. Since then, 90% of the tweets are self-promotion, links to affiliate sites, and the like–all automated because they’re tweeted on a repeat cycle, including a noticeable typo–I’m on the verge of unfollowing them.

    I joined Twitter to connect with people, to learn from and with them, not to get a flood of spammed adverts. It feels one-sided.

    Thank you for the interactivity. I find that these new connections have already helped me improve as a writer in a thriving community.

    Cheers,

    Tonette dela Luna

  12. #13 by K.R. Brorman on March 14, 2013 - 2:23 pm

    Regular Twitter is a hot mess. Reminds me of my closet. 400 tweets and only 20 that I want to read. Looking into TS and HS to sort that out. Wish they made one for closets.

  13. #14 by renée a. schuls-jacobson on March 14, 2013 - 2:28 pm

    Triberr is great as a reader — but I wish everyone would take the time to actually PERSONALIZE their tweets! I know that lots of people mean well by just clicking APPROVE, but it would mean so much more if they actually read the content and sent out a personalized tweet. I probably shouldn’t look a gifthorse in the mouth — and I’m thrilled that i have people tweeting my work — and it DOES bring lots of traffic my way, but tweets are sooooo much more effective when someone takes the time to include more than the URL and the title.

  14. #16 by John Hayden on March 14, 2013 - 2:47 pm

    Good timing. I started on Twitter recently, and need all the help I can get. Adding a state or city to your name is a good tip, which can also be used as a url. I can see how a person might want to have one Twitter acct for business and professional life, and a separate one for friends and family. Otherwise, you’re boring your biz associates with family and personal stuff, and vice versa. I’ve tried multiple blogs, but it’s really hard over the long run. I’m trying to limit myself to one blog.

  15. #17 by MaLinda Johnson on March 14, 2013 - 3:10 pm

    I think it is possible to use analytics to boost your SEO value and reader appeal (without becoming a mindless slave to the numbers, as you described above.) If you keep track of the search terms people use to find you consistently over time, it can help you spot key words that you can drop into posts later (NOT necessarily base posts on, just to be clear. :)) I’ve gotten great feedback from posts I’ve written that were based on novel search terms that are applicable to my core topics. Oftentimes, a reader will find me based on a query that is an excellent question but not one I ever would have thought to cover. Aka, a good muse.

  16. #18 by Yvonne Hertzberger on March 14, 2013 - 3:12 pm

    Down to earth advice. Thanks.

  17. #19 by Becky Fyfe on March 14, 2013 - 3:57 pm

    I must admit I have more than one Twitter identity, but all except one use my name so people know it’s still me, and other than tweeting links to my (relevant to the username) blog posts, I don’t tweet the same things on them. My main one is http://www.twitter.com/moonduster, and it’s where I do most of my tweeting (even though I use FB more). Some of my followers got confused when I was tweeting posts and topics having to do with my health and fitness blog, my writing blog and my fairy magic blog, so I gave them the option of following a different username that only tweeted specific topics.

    Again, I use Facebook much more.

  18. #20 by MishaBurnett on March 14, 2013 - 4:09 pm

    Haven’t tried any Twitter tools–I’ll look into HootSuite (do I hafta wear a zoot suit to go to HootSuite?) I use on Twitter ID, have one Facebook page, have one Google+ account that I have no idea what to do with (tap, tap, tap–is this thing even on?) and one main WordPress blog (this one.)

    I did start a second WordPress blog specifically as a place to share information about a short story collection that I am trying to put together–it’s just for that one project.

    • #21 by stephscottil on March 17, 2013 - 12:34 pm

      LOL “zoot suit.”
      I’ve had Tweetdeck on my cell phone for awhile but it ALWAYS crashes. I thought a new phone would help but it’s not showing all the tweets from a hashtag chat, which makes it pointless. Will have to check out Hootsuite :)

  19. #22 by Daniel Escurel Occeno on March 14, 2013 - 4:51 pm

    Are bugs attracted by the light or the warmth of the bug zapper? There is a theory that the world would be consumed by all the insects except when the sun comes out most of those wanting warmth die trying to go closer to the sun, like the story of Icarus. The bugs eventually dry up to dust. I am still at the stage of using my Nokia cell phone voice recorder to dictate something to add in writing a novel or voice record a new idea to write when an inspiration develops in my mind in the middle of the night. I add it the next day or when I have time. It is easier than thumb-typing on notes of the cell phone and I have to type it later on anyway. I have my E-mail address public and I do not get any reactions involving my blog. If Facebook and Twitter will create a greater response from zero, it would be an improvement and it is well-worth learning the best way how to use the tools.

  20. #23 by hcfbutton on March 14, 2013 - 5:15 pm

    thanks to you Kristen i have merged my halves back into one whole with my blog. it was stressful, and i’ll probably lose some people in the transition, but i feel able to keep on top of things this way. i have been loving twitter because of the chats with # tags. but as you and Rachelle Gardner both say to do hootsuite to follow stuff today, think i’ll get back into it.

  21. #24 by SweetSong on March 14, 2013 - 5:18 pm

    Hehe, I find it funny that you decry making a twitter account for a character when someone who spoke at WANACon encouraged it. Not that I expect everyone to agree on everything, it just amused me. ;) Do you think there’s a way that making an account for a character could be done right (say, for a temporary game/project/etc or if it were explicitly stated the person was a fictional entity?)

    • #25 by Author Kristen Lamb on March 14, 2013 - 5:54 pm

      I think it’s a time suck. I know who you’re talking about and I love most of his talk, but…yeah. We definitely agree to disagree on that, LOL. If you get big enough to have a legion of interns handling that crap, then sally forth. But most of us are looking for more time to WRITE.

  22. #26 by C.S. Severe on March 14, 2013 - 6:37 pm

    I would find it incredibly boring to follow someone who was tweeting as a character. Wow! Not funny or creative. I already have enough of my hands taking care of my own twitter account, so I can’t imagine myself having more than one. Great post!

  23. #27 by Kim Jorgensen Gane on March 14, 2013 - 6:47 pm

    Well $#!+…wish I’d have read this before I opened KimWCPosse and GlutenNaziMom! How do you recommend transitioning to one account and just your name, Kristen? I have a huge anthology project going on right now…is that a bad time to make the change?

    • #28 by Author Kristen Lamb on March 14, 2013 - 7:09 pm

      Just change the name not the image. Most people won’t notice. The account you decide to bail on, just tweet and ask them to follow the one ID. People are smart. we will catch up ;). And this will be WAY easier for you later.

      • #29 by Kim Jorgensen Gane on March 14, 2013 - 7:30 pm

        Just had 1000 bookmarks printed for a conference I’m attending in San Francisco next week with both Twitter IDs on them…dang. Oh geez…and on what else have I put it out there…?! *little freakout moment* I know you’re right though.

        • #30 by Author Kristen Lamb on March 14, 2013 - 8:01 pm

          Won’t matter. They will follow the right one the other will direct them. Will be fine. Promise :D.

  24. #32 by fannyfae on March 14, 2013 - 9:06 pm

    I love your posts, Kristen! I do however have a problem and maybe you and others can address it for me. Fanny Fae, obviously, is not my name. I took this identitybecause it was the nickname of an ancestor of mine, Yes, I have written fiction with my ancestors name as a character, but that is less of an issue. Ultimately, I chose to keep using this name, frankly, because my real name is also shared with both a Christian recording artist and another woman who is a soft porn star.

    Needless to say I do not want to be confused with either one.

    When I was an associate producer and was listed on the IMDB professional side for a film project, it definitely caused problems. I just used this ID and now it seems to have taken on a life of its own.

    I do have an Egyptology book that is coming out later this month, and it will be under my real name. However, I have been long considering changing my name legally. Your advice in a situation like this?

    • #33 by Author Kristen Lamb on March 15, 2013 - 8:38 am

      If you pick a pen name stick to it. Otherwise it will diffuse your energies and the support for your books. Contrary to what NY seems to believe, most of us read more than one genre.

      • #34 by Leah St. James on March 16, 2013 - 7:40 am

        Thank you, thank you, thank you! I’ve written in several genres, all under one pen name. Friends tell me I should pick different names for different genres, but I have enough problems with keeping the pen name and the real me straight (not to mention a full-time job, plus trying to write, plus trying ot squeak out a few minutes to be “social”!). I now feel validated!

  25. #35 by Julie Glover on March 14, 2013 - 10:09 pm

    I spit-laughed at this: “Are you on Facebook or ovulating?” I have read those articles about when you should tweet what to maximize your Twitter reach. I just feel like I’m good to remember to match my socks most days, much less jump on at the exact time to have the best effect. I suppose I’m thinking that if I go on regularly and interact, I’m me and it works. Thanks, Kristen!

    • #36 by Kim Jorgensen Gane on March 15, 2013 - 11:13 am

      Julie, you made me spit laugh…I’m down to wearing mismatched socks because the matching ones need washing, and I can’t seem to be bothered with such mundane tasks when THERE IS SO MUCH ELSE *that’s so much more interesting* TO DO! Yeah…I need to get it down to one ID alright. :P

      • #37 by Julie Glover on March 15, 2013 - 11:21 am

        You’re just hip. I see teens wearing mismatched socks as a fashion statement. Claim that, Kim! LOL. ;)

      • #39 by Daniel Escurel Occeno on March 15, 2013 - 4:22 pm

        I have been made fun off since grade school for taking a shower every morning and wearing the same socks for days maybe an entire five days, and I cannot afford Lysol Disinfectant “Fresh Linen” Scent Spray for my shoes. I do not mind the tag of being an eccentric, a poor eccentric. Not shaving for a month, I save on disposable razor blades and shaving cream, since all I do is sit around in front of a computer to crank out novels. But I must be popular being made fun off every day without a FACEBOOK account. I hear comments of “How will I ever be successful” and “Who would marry him”. At 52 I really do not care. I have novels to write.

  26. #40 by Elle Carter Neal on March 15, 2013 - 4:59 am

    I’ve just recently taken advice from one of your earlier posts and changed my Twitter ID from my used-to-be-clever website name to my actual name. It was surprisingly easy to do, and I’m really glad I’ve done it before my book comes out.

    I have been considering registering an account under the name of my main character, though – but not to use for tweeting, just to “bank” the ID so that no one else picks it up. I imagine there are Twitter handles for variations of @HarryPotter, for example, that might be owned by fans rather than JKR, or, worse, picked up by people who simply jump on these things to flip them to the highest bidder.

  27. #41 by Rachel Thompson on March 15, 2013 - 11:14 am

    The answer is yes, but worse, social media makes us all tools of corporate and government data mining operations. This helps them more than it helps us. The NSA has it’s claws in every server and has the ability to read everybody’s posts and emails– welcome to America under the Patriot Act. Gee, I sure feel freer.

    • #42 by Daniel Escurel Occeno on March 15, 2013 - 5:07 pm

      I thought; it was the VATICAN, which could watch everything. In the 1960s it was called the V-Chip in every electronics made. The NSA might be less powerful today since “W” needed Homeland Security. It was probably because YALE “techheads” from the father replaced Reagan’s Stanford or Silicon Valley. I can only imagine what Harvard is doing or not doing to protect the country.

  28. #43 by alicamckennajohnson on March 15, 2013 - 6:06 pm

    I had set up multiple identities- personal, YA, conteporary romance, and gay romance about a month before taking your first class. I was never happier than when I deleted them all!

  29. #44 by pamelacreese on March 17, 2013 - 10:15 am

    Thanks for this post, it was very informative.
    Many of these social media I have never even heard of, others I only recognize by name.
    I have FB, and a website with a link to my blog on LiveJournal. It is pretty much all I have time to keep up with on a regular basis. I DO need to change my email address to my name, problem being that everyone who has ever known me knows my current…shall we say…’odd’?…email name.

    Thanks for the update. I will reread it a few more times and see if I can figure out what else I need to do.

  30. #45 by dtkrippene on March 17, 2013 - 1:48 pm

    I use Hootsuite as well. Great time saver. Sage advice on the “one identity”.

  31. #46 by Cairenn Rhys on March 17, 2013 - 11:07 pm

    I just wrote about as well the other day, after seeing what one writer did publicly that has damaged him and he doesn’t even realize it. Thanks for chiming in on the subject!

  32. #47 by Raani York on March 23, 2013 - 5:42 pm

    This is a GREAT blog post. August McLaughlin recommended it to me and I’ll be following you from now on. Really well written. As soon as I got more time I’ll go “deeper” into your other blog posts. :-)

  33. #49 by Gary Robson on March 27, 2013 - 5:10 pm

    I must disagree with you about the multiple Twitter accounts. My main source of income may be writing, but I do have another job: I own a bookstore and tea bar. None of the books I’ve written (yet) are about tea, so I don’t see any reason to send my readers a bunch of tea tweets, nor my tea customers a bunch of tweets about my books.

    I have only one identity on LinkedIn, but I manage half a dozen pages on Facebook for various books, businesses, nonprofits, and clubs. I had a single blog, but split it into two about a year and a half ago.

    I will agree that one Twitter identity is fine for an author (especially an author who writes only in one genre). Personally, though, if I follow an author on Twitter it’s because I want to know about the author and the books. If the feed is filled with irrelevant data from other aspects of the author’s life, I’m not going to follow it.

    • #50 by Author Kristen Lamb on March 27, 2013 - 5:18 pm

      But people who read books like tea and bookstores, so same demographic. And most people don’t want non-stop author-promo, so that other aspect of your life would break up the “marketing.” But your time, so do as you see fit :D.

      • #51 by Daniel Escurel Occeno on March 27, 2013 - 8:53 pm

        Something to look forward to if I need to spend the cash on something tangible – a bookstore, but I would add an Internet Café with a mini ice cream place in the front. Lipton Lemon Tea, hot or cold!

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