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Blog Improvement Project – Social Media Carnival

March 12, 2009

blog-improvement-project

Kim of Sophisticated Dorkiness is leading us through the Blog Improvement Project and she has declared March Social Media Month.  The current assignment is to write a post about a social media tool that you currently use.  The social media tools I use for  blogging are Library Thing, Book Blogs and Twitter.  I love all three, but I use Twitter the most and find it very effective.

Carl listens to Leo Laporte‘s podcasts all the time, and if I’m in the room, I sometimes listen in.  I’ve heard Leo talk about Twitter a lot and I used to tell Carl that I just didn’t get it.  Micro blogging?  Following?  I couldn’t understand how it worked.  One day, when I was wasting time looking up something on a publishers web site, I noticed that they had several Twitter links listed.  I shot off an email to one of their reps and she gave me an explanation that convinced me to give it a try.

I’m so glad I did.  There is a very small learning curve, but once you figure it out, it’s a snap.  The hardest part for me was figuring out how to find people to follow.  The easiest way to do that is to follow a few people who have links on their blogs and then look at the people they follow.  The other thing that I had to learn was that if there is an at symbol in front of someone’s name that message is intended for them, but anyone can read it.  You can send direct messages that are only visible to the intended recipient, too.

What I love about Twitter is it’s sense of community.  I think it has brought the book blogging community closer together.  There’s always someone on there to answer a question and even boost your ego a little on the days you need it.   You can usually find some book chatter too.  It’s a great place to learn about giveaways and to advertise your blog.

Twitter not only connects bloggers to each other, but also connects us to the publishing world.  Publishers tweet about great book reviews and upcoming books.  They even offer review copies sometimes.  Authors let you know where they’re signing books and what they’re currently working on.  Media reps offer tips for improving your blog.

I use TweetDeck to tweet, because it separates all tweets, replies and direct messages,  and Twitterfeed to automatically post links to my new blog entries.   If you’re not on Twitter yet, you should be.  Click here to follow me.

24 Comments leave one →
  1. March 12, 2009 7:52 am

    I still don’t have the hang of Twitter (I guess my learning curve is a little longer than most) – but you clearly illustrate the advantages of sticking with it.

  2. March 12, 2009 8:18 am

    Totally agree! Twitter has been so much fun. I wish I had the time to spend on there more. Maybe when the kids leave the house. 😉

    I’ve met so many cool authors and publishers.

  3. March 12, 2009 9:29 am

    I grabbed “my” Twitter name, but I’m not yet tweeting. I think Kim has plans for us to try some of the social media that’s “new to us”, so you may be hearing from me soon ….

  4. March 12, 2009 9:32 am

    You know I’m a huge twitter fan! I absolutely love tweeting with all of my virtual friends! See you there.

  5. March 12, 2009 9:42 am

    I was on Twitter already. I’ve heard alot about TweetDeck but had not made the move to try it out until I read about it here. Needless to say I’m loving Twitter even more now. (Hugs)Indigo

  6. stacybuckeye permalink
    March 12, 2009 9:50 am

    But I barely have time to keep up with facebook 🙂 One of these days you’ll see me tweeting…

  7. March 12, 2009 9:50 am

    I agree, I really enjoy twitter! I like how someone is always around and it definitely has strengthened my sense of community.

  8. March 12, 2009 9:53 am

    Excellent post. Twitter has made me feel much more connected to my blogging buddies. And I am always learning something: a new book, an interesting site, a new place to post reviews.

  9. March 12, 2009 10:38 am

    I’ve started tweeting, but I don’t like that it goes out to the whole world (or whoever) and then you see a big horrible typo and you can’t edit it! (at least, not according to my knowledge of it which is verrrrrrry slight!)

  10. March 12, 2009 10:53 am

    Agreed! Twitter has been great for the book blogging community! As a SAHM, Twitter is my “water cooler” – somewhere to mention that my kids are driving me crazy, what I’m up to, share links of articles I’m reading, etc. Things that don’t warrant an entire blog post. It’s a great place to promote your blog, connect with authors, and publishers. And heck, where else can I send off a note to Ellen DeGeneres and *think* that she might actually see it.

  11. March 12, 2009 11:20 am

    I’m still refusing to use Twitter because the last thing I need is to be addicted to something else on the internet!

  12. March 12, 2009 1:23 pm

    Great post Kathy! I didn’t get it at first either but now it’s the place I go as a reward for finishing up some work. Great resources and a great way to get to know my book blogging peeps.

    I think I already follow you. :-p

  13. March 12, 2009 4:32 pm

    Thank you for a great post. I’m still one of the ones who don’t quite get it even though I signed up for it. Your post helped me see the value of it. Maybe I need to try it again.

  14. March 12, 2009 5:54 pm

    Okay…okay….okay…you’ve convinced me, I’ve signed up for Twitter….but I have a feeling there’s a learning curve and I’ll have to settle down and figure it out.

  15. March 12, 2009 7:45 pm

    i haven’t jumped on to the twitter bandwagon…but i still haven’t joined facebook. i like good, old fashioned blogging. i’m old school, what can i say?

  16. March 12, 2009 7:59 pm

    Twitter is so fun, and so addictive too! 🙂

  17. March 12, 2009 9:21 pm

    I’m on Twitter, but I don’t post to it that often. I do have Twitterfeed enabled, but I mostly follow other people and read what they’re up to.

  18. March 12, 2009 9:26 pm

    I’m still getting my head wrapped around Twitter, but I love reading the conversations you and other book bloggers have via Twitter. I just learned how to set up TwitterFeed, so hopefully that will help.

    Thanks for a great BIP post!

  19. alirambles permalink
    March 13, 2009 5:47 pm

    I like Twitter, and the firefox add-on Twitterfox but haven’t yet taken the plunge to Tweetdeck. I guess I should give it a try.

  20. callista83 permalink
    March 14, 2009 4:37 pm

    Great post on twitter. I find it’s helping with my non-book blog more with regards to PR people, as a lot of them look at your followers on twitter to see how much influence you have.

    I’m checking out TweetDeck right now, thanks.

  21. March 15, 2009 3:01 pm

    Thanks for the link to Twitterfeed – as a Twitter newbie, due to Kim’s BIP – I appreciated it.

  22. March 15, 2009 8:51 pm

    Great post! I totally agree with you, Twitter creates an amazing sense of community. It’s also a time suck. 🙂

  23. March 16, 2009 8:23 pm

    I do follow you! I wish I had more time. I stop into Twitter and am always jealous of the great conversations going on! Wish I had more time….

  24. March 17, 2009 4:56 pm

    I stll don’t have the hang of twitter either, I have had a rather long learning curve. I’m sure that’s because I don’t get on it much because I dont’ know what I’m doing. I’m going to look into tweetdeck and twitterfeed though, I think those might help me.

    Thanks for this post!

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