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3 Ways to Write Effective Messages on Twitter

By Sandy Dunwoody and Kelly Rynard, Publicists and Social Media Specialists for Author Solutions, LLC

Social media can be a powerful tool to get your message across to an extremely diverse audience.Twitteris one of the most popular ways to do that – in 140 characters or less. This 140-character limit may seem daunting to new users. You might be asking, “But how do I use this to my advantage?” or “What do I say?”

Below is a good rule of thumb for types of tweets on Twitter:

  • Tweets focused on your topic or industry: Follow accounts that relate to your book’s topic or your industry of expertise. These accounts will provide good content for retweeting and sharing with your followers. You may also want to share any relevant articles or blog posts in your tweets. This information will build credibility within your Twitter audience.
  • Tweets focused on yourself and your book: Share some tweets that are more personal in nature. They can be links to your blog, personal thoughts and any news about you or the book. However, it’s important to keep your tweets varied and interesting.
  • Tweets focused on others: Engagement is the most important aspect of social networking. When interacting with potential followers, show you’re interested by commenting on what they are reading, writing or involved with. People are more likely to take an interest in you when you take the effort to connect with them.

So think of your tweets as a Twitter pie equally divided in thirds between your topic, yourself and others. Here are some good examples of tweets from each of the three categories:


Tweet 1


Tweet 2



4 Terms to Know

Hash Tag – Help Twitter users discover your tweets. Write your tweet, then use a pound sign in front of the words that you want to tag – no spaces. For example, a tagged tweet might look like this:

  • Eat whole grains to help control your weight, plus reduce risk of heart disease and Type-2 diabetes. #nutrition #food #health #weightloss
Note: You can use multiple hash tags in a tweet if you haven’t exceeded your 140-character limit.

Retweet – Easily share someone else’s tweet with your followers. Hover over a tweet in your timeline to see options such as “Retweet” and “Reply.” Click Retweet, and the tweet will be automatically posted to your timeline.

Reply – To comment on or answer others’ tweets, click Reply when hovering over the tweet to whichyou want to reply. You will see a new tweet open up with that user’s Twitter handle already supplied. Add your reply and click Tweet to have the reply posted to your timeline.

Follow – Building your Twitter following starts by following others. Use your favorite search engine or Twitter’s search function to discover tweeters that interest you. Simply navigate to that user’s page and click +Follow. That user’s tweets will automatically populate in your timeline.