I was recently given a bit of advice by a successful author. She told me to follow the 80/20 ratio of posting on Twitter. Eighty percent of the time I should be focusing on others (liking, retweeting, commenting) and twenty percent on myself (posting about my book).
I tried this and it was immensely successful. I gained followers at a regular rate (around 100 per month) made connections, built trust with several of my followers, and generally enjoyed the increased visibility that I perceived I was receiving. However, after a month, I started to notice a disturbing trend. I was getting plenty of impressions, but very little actual interaction.
I logged this away as an anomaly and continued on my happy Twitter way. Shortly thereafter, I became more active on WordPress. Being an author who is trying to build his ‘Platform’, I posted each of my blog posts on Twitter, Facebook, Linkedin, Tumblr, and Google+. My hope was that they would have a cumulative effect and increase my visibility. However, during all that time, I hung my hopes on Twitter. Having built a following of over 1,500, I felt that Twitter was the best chance of increased traffic to my blog and my site.
Then I read an article saying that Twitter was changing its algorithm, and traffic was going to become much harder to come by if you didn’t pay for Twitter ads. This was not something I had in my budget. Having to work a fifty hour a week job just to put food on the table makes Twitter ads a low priority.
I tried to go on with my Twitter life, but the seed of doubt had been planted. It was further watered when I read another blog post saying that twitter was less than useful, it actually took time away that could be used for other things.
I was now in full on doubt mode. I did a little research for myself and was shocked at what I found.
I started posting to WordPress in early June. During that time, I had 62 views, 48 visitors, and 34 likes. Each of my 14 blog posts, I had also posted to twitter, with a link to my WordPress blog.
During that same time, I had 16,000 impressions (views) total on Twitter. Of those 16,000, 1,729 were impressions that came from tweets of my blog posts. Here are the numbers.
Out of 1729 impressions, I received 5 retweets, 5 detail expands, 4 likes,
And a grand total of (drumroll please)
1 Link click
So, out of one thousand, seven hundred, and twenty-nine times tweets about my blog were seen, only one time was anyone interested enough to click over to WordPress and actually read the blog.
An entire month of posting for one click.
Was it worth it? For the numbers alone, no. However, I did make a few contacts, and even had a few people follow me who had over a hundred thousand followers. Several prominent authors followed me and a couple liked and retweeted my tweets.
Was that awesome? Yes. Will it help me out in some way? I don’t know. I would like to believe that making connections is always a good idea, especially with those who have already been successful.
Bottom line, is Twitter worth the time and effort I’ve been putting into it? I’d say a resounding no. Will I continue to have a presence and interact with my followers? Yes, but not nearly as much as over the last few months.