Or have you?


If you’ve read my last few posts or heck, read your stream lately (or listened to anyone on Facebook), it certainly seems so; what with the hackers, spammers, automation, and, as someone (whom I greatly respect) said recently in an article, ‘branding is ruining the organic, interactive fun for everyone.’


But…is that really true about Twitter?


From a writing and business perspective, I say no way. Twitter is still the best bang for your buck.


Okay, sure it’s free. But your time isn’t.


So, what do I mean?


Let’s deconstruct.


  • Hackers: absolutely suck. Hate ‘em. Make your password less hackable by using a combination of uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and at least TWO symbols. Combined with a dose of Alzheimer’s meds to remember it, you should be safe. And never, ever click on their links.


  • Spammers: just as bad. There are really a few subsets of spammers, however:
  1. Bots: Some are kinda funny (try mentioning ‘Fight Club’ sometime and see what happens). Most are creepy porn bots. Oftentimes they run in foreign language packs – ever notice that? Japanese, then South American, then German; then round again. Either delete or ignore, most bots are fairly harmless, albeit annoying.
  2. AutoDMs with links: these are created by real people who want to sell you a used car before you’ve even learned to drive. Sorry, no can do. I ignore any and all requests. Sadly, many come from my fellow authors. Sigh. Even then, I don’t. (They don’t know anyway, now do they?)
  3. Same message, different people: This works a few ways. One person will send out the same message to HUNDREDS or even THOUSANDS of different people, usually with a link. OR, they’ll send out the same message across hundreds of different accounts. Oftentimes, it’s not even a person but a program. Bottom line: block and report for spam.


  • Automation: People look at automation differently. There are degrees.


Some vehemently oppose anything you don’t write organically live at that moment in time. If that works for them, great.

I disagree.


Why? Two reasons:


1) I don’t believe in clumping your tweets only when you’re live. There are twenty-four hours in a day. Everyone is not on when you are, right?


2) We’re all very busy people. I have a family, my own business, kids, carpool, clients, my writing (we’ll not discuss housework and the food I burn)… I can’t possibly be on Twitter all the time, even with my laptop, iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire and three cups of coffee! It’s just not possible. And who wants to be on social media all the time anyway? It’s draining.


So I use Hootsuite to schedule in Tweets at intervals, using branded keywords, topics of interest, links to interesting content, promotional content for my own work and those of people I’m working with or supporting, etc. (I also like Pluggio as well).


And of course I tweet live. Anyone who follows me knows that.

What about Triberr? I’ve mentioned Triberr before because it’s awesomely awesome. Some people hate it but I’m not sure they understand how to use it correctly, spacing out their approved posts and mixing them in with content (no links). Ultimately you are responsible for your Twitter stream, Triberr is not. Learn how it works, the potential, how to manage your tribes. If you’re not in the right tribes, drop out of one or two. Triberr works great when you make it great.


  • Branding: Thinking out your keywords allows you to riff on a topic, do research, and provide the best possible content for your following, making you an interesting person to follow and continue to follow.


I truly believe the reason people follow me @RachelintheOC and at @BadRedheadMedia is because they know what to expect from me. My branding for both accounts is very different but that’s what makes it interesting. RachelintheOC is all about snark, wit, humor, music, Mancode, relationships, books, authors, and yes, some promotion and social media whereas BadRedheadMedia is all about offering help, advice and tips on social media, books, sales, and marketing. (The most fun: I rarely use exclamation marks on RachelintheOC and yet they’re all over BadRedheadMedia. It’s fun to freak people out. Oops, I mean out!)


Completely different branding, yet still interactive, informative, fun.


Unless I haven’t had my coffee.


(Note on self-promotion: I generally post one tweet/day regarding my books, if that. As of this writing (May 3, 2012), I’ve put out one tweet over the past three days. I’ve sold 63 books (of my two books combined) and had 26 lends so far this month (on Amazon). Decent numbers. Point is, I am not spamming my book links all over Twitter and Facebook. Want to know what I’m doing? That’s next week – or contact me personally for consulting!)


Bottom line: The onus is on you to make your Twitter experience great. Be proactive with blocking the stupid stuff, ignoring what doesn’t warrant your interest, and giving laser focus to what does.


Can you get your Twitter mojo back now? Let me know!


I’m doing my part to help authors learn how to not spam on social media and still sell books, so I’ve partnered with some amazing women and we’ve created IndieBookPromo.com a great site to help you get exposed. Traditionally pub’d? Visit BookPromoCentral.com — we’ll expose you there, too. All for under $50 bucks! You should also follow us on Twitter: @IndieBookPromos and @BookPromoCentral — advertising, resources, info. 




  1. Brad Ellison on May 4, 2012 at 6:12 am

    I like you. In a mildly threatening, stalkerish kind of way.

    I don’t know what you have against hackers. If it weren’t for them, how would be know when someone is saying bad things about us? And as for spammers, I’m always looking to follow more businesses I don’t care about on Facebook.

    I agree on the automation. I took your advice and spaced out my Triberr postings, which has really helped to de-clutter my feed. I have push notifications on my iPhone for mentions and DM’s, which allows me to respond immediately (if I want to) to someone actually trying to make a personal connection on Twitter. Which leads to an interesting question: why are work Twitter conversations so much more enjoyable outside of typical “work hours?” I’m out at dinner, unwinding with my wife, but a Twitter mention to @luftigwarren still captures my attention.

    Anyway, another great post. Thanks!

    • Rachel Thompson on May 6, 2012 at 10:58 am

      Brad, you made me laugh at this one. You forgot about how much weight we can lose as well or the funniest picture someone found of us. 🙂

      I don’t become annoyed anymore at the idiots — mostly because they’re not people and it’s not worth my effort or time. But I feel badly for people who go clicky clicky and what a pain it can be for them which sucks.

      (Hint: I turn off the PUSH notifications. At some point, one has to focus on our real lives. But that’s just me and that may not be an option for you. Hi to your wife.)

      Triberr rocks, as you know that I know that you know. Thanks for your great comments.

  2. Gareth on May 4, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    To be perfectly honest (and I’m hesitant to even say it in case I jinx it) twitter seems to have finally put the kibosh on all the spam and ropey accounts. Haven’t had a dodgy robot follower for ages.

    I’m only really on there to mess about, though – I don’t rely on it to publicise anything or talk to customers or what have you – so I’m probably off the radar for spammers.

    Bet I get a shedload of them now I’ve said that though. 😉


    • Rachel Thompson on May 6, 2012 at 11:00 am

      Gareth — love having you here! Such a rarity and so I’m even happier. For awhile, it did seem that Twitter had a handle (hehe) on the spammers but in the past week they’re come back out in full force again. Not sure why.

      They did file suit against a bunch of them and that seemed to help — maybe that’s their reaction — to retaliate. Not sure. Will be interesting to see what ends up happening now.

      Peace, baby.

  3. eden baylee on May 6, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    Great post hon. I love twitter, and have not tweeted my book in over 4 months, but have just been a presence on it. Guess what? My book has still sold. People are smart enough to find out more about you if they’re interested in what you say – they can read your links from your twitter bio. You don’t need to hold their hands and drag them there. Go figure.

    I’m tired of people tweeting links to their books 24/7. I’ve tuned them out completely because it truly is an arrogant approach to getting noticed. In my experience , unfortunately, these are some of the people I’ve supported and don’t return the favor because they are too self absorbed. Lesson learned for me – I only need to be burned once.


    • Rachel Thompson on May 7, 2012 at 8:43 am

      It’s great to hear your view, Eden. You’re so supportive of authors and a successful author as well, but there is a point in which the universe kicks you in the ass. I don’t mean that in a selfish way, just simply the way your mentioned. Besides, the constant spam has become mindnumbing party background noise — nobody can hear or listen to a single voice.

      Love you, Thin Mint.

  4. Tim Casey on May 7, 2012 at 7:48 am

    God bless you Rachel I would have never come as far as I have without you. The very first day I started on Twitter you some how found in all that and gave me great advice without asking for anything from me. You are a gem and an inspiration and I want to say thank you and keep up the good fight.

    • Rachel Thompson on May 7, 2012 at 10:26 am

      Sweet, Tim. I found you because YOU are the gem, but thank you. I’m happy to help you anytime, luv. And you know I mean it. xo

  5. Natasha on May 7, 2012 at 3:06 pm

    If you told me a year ago I’d be building relationships in 140 characters or less, I would have called you whacked…personally…I LOVE slaying spam-bots, but most of all I love the amazing communities filled with real, live, people I’ve connected with. I also discovered what a wealth of information YOU literally give away as a result of a tweet and some of those very special people. It is what it is…for me, it rocks!

    • Rachel Thompson on May 7, 2012 at 5:36 pm

      Thank you, Natasha! I strongly believe in sharing my knowledge and learning from others much smarter than myself. I believe the universe works in wonderful, karmic ways. Plus, I couldn’t agree with you more — meeting amazing people on Twitter is AWESOME! I’m sitting here at this moment w/ my editor, live and in person, with Jessica Swift aka @SwiftInkEditor whom I met through Twitter. Without Twitter, would this ever have happened? No way.

  6. Tim Casey on May 7, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    Thank you Rachel, I don’t know if you noticed or not, but using what you have taught me I did a promo on Amazon for my book a couple of weeks ago. I held the number 1 position on Amazon bestseller list memoirs for 2 days and rose as high as #15 overall on Amazon in the end I had 10,000 downloads of my book and within days had 4 new reviews 3 five star. All because of you.

    • Rachel Thompson on May 7, 2012 at 11:16 pm

      Wow, Tim that’s AMAZING! So excited and happy for you. While I appreciate the kudos (of course– and thank you!), I don’t feel I can take credit, sweet. It’s YOUR book. The true measure of a successful book isn’t the marketing — it’s in the writing. (And okay, maybe a tiny little bit in the marketing.)


  7. Heather Manley on May 14, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    Hey, thanks for the password tips… and everything else! Do you think its important to change passwords frequently?

    Love ya,

    • Rachel Thompson on May 14, 2012 at 6:24 pm

      yes, actually, it’s a good idea to change your FB and Twitter passwords at least monthly (some say weekly!) and choose HTTPS (it’s a safer option). And remember to use a symbol. Most crawlers can’t pick up the symbol added in there. I read that on a hacker’s site!

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