After writing an article about my aunt and her novel, I decided to get back to marketing my own writing a bit. Since the article I wrote about her jumped into the Top 10 on Google right away, my idea was that I would take several Twitter acquaintances and do the same for them. The idea would be to create a little good will and place some Amazon ad links out there in case someone was searching for the other authors I know.

The only problem is that when I started to view profiles of those on Twitter that I follow, I realized that I am a total Twitter novice, even after joining a mutual follow author group. Even the most inept of my author followers on Twitter appear to have double the number of my own followers. I mean, people with profiles that have almost no information, people who have very little to say, and people whose profile photos look like they were snapped in the parking lot of a truck stop. All of these people had double my followers. Then, there were the relatively homely photos I clicked on, thinking maybe the good lookers got more action. But a lot of the everyday Joes and Janes had upwards of 20,000 followers.

I know it matters. When I post an article, I can get 20 to 50 more hits from a Facebook promotion and close to 100 more hits from posting it to @dukeofbluemound on Twitter. So if I had 100,000 followers on Twitter, I'd have 10,000 hits for the article? I don't really know. And I don't think I have the energy to find out. I'm sure that's where the Twitter Followers For Sale folks make their money. People see the potential of getting so many followers that each article becomes as important as my top ten ever written. With even more math, I could probably figure conversions and actual monetary value per Twitter follow.

I just don't know if I have the energy to keep scraping away to get huge numbers of followers. I suppose one big article mentioned by an important entertainment icon could get me there, but I don't personally now any of those folks, so I tread at around 1000 followers, most of whom only follow me because I follow them, only retweeting or liking a very small percentage of my posts.

It's entirely possible that I'm using Twitter all wrong. I probably should try to interact and add comments about all kinds of things, but then I'd be seemingly wasting my time just having conversations rather than marketing. Then again, maybe that's what my followers want: conversations that matter instead of articles I wrote on my blog. I could see the whole thing getting much worse, as I try to carry on meaningful dialogues on two or three social media outlets, with the main goal just to get more followers and sell books or websites.

Stepping back, however, I have to wonder what else makes sense. I may have missed the boat with Twitter, joining early on and then letting the account sit there for years before I tried to make it a meaningful marketing tool. So it's pretty worthless right now, unless I work at it. I guess I wish I knew what was big next right now, so I could join that community at the start and give it a good try from the start. Personally, I barely read any Tweets, and I'm not a whole lot better on Facebook. In fact, it seems like because we can access so much, we don't want to access anything more than what is trending, looking to watch the most popular recent posts, shared everywhere at once. And I don't have the ability to be that post, most of which are posted with a specific purpose in mind. Everyone else is looking to get famous while I'm just looking to use the same marketing tool to make a living, and there's a fundamental difference in those goals.

I have to say that Linkedin, suggested by a mentor, was a bust for me. I always felt like my own articles weren't "professional" enough to share on that outlet, and I always felt that when others did share their Facebook-like articles on Linkedin, others unfriended or ignored them. The business pages on both Linkedin and Facebook are pretty useless, unless you can find a way to get people to want to like those pages. Since I can't think of why people would want to follow my business pages, I have to use my personal pages, Twitter, or Google+ when not using my own websites. But the whole point is that I want everyone to end up on my own sites, where I can sell them items or ideas of my own. Again, I'm sure people who really make a living from blogging have thousands of social media friends and ways to draw people to their sites, even if the content is not so great.

So, if you've found your way to this page because you can't figure it all out, I feel your pain. If you're here because you happen to know all the answers and just like to see what others have to say, let the rest of us in on your insight. Just a little bit.