Ahh…you gotta love Twitter?
No, “Here’s how you do it.”
No, “Hey, let me help you get going.”
Just a three-month learning curve, a world of people laughing as you stumble, and a group of pencil-pushing little nerds who like to change things periodically, just to keep you falling flat on your face. Sounds like just the thing you want to get into, right?
I’ve come a long way since my first tweet. When I started, I remember reading somewhere that when you tweet your book, you want to make sure you always add the link (“readers are lazy”) and you want to always include your title in your tweet (“readers are forgetful”). So, without knowing how to copy/paste, I tweeted from my Amazon page.
I filled a file full of these little ditties to tweet, manually, on a daily basis. Soon, I came across a post in the Createspace forum announcing, “Picture tweets garner 75% more views, click-throughs, and engagement.” Where the hell was I going to get pictures? How the hell do you do that?
Eventually, I was able to add pictures (my book jacket) to my tweets. But that got old, and rather boring. A friend told me about Pixabay.com It’s a site for photographers. They upload their copyright-free pictures (400K+ pictures) and allow you to download them…FREE! Using my iPad, the PicCollage app, and Pixabay, I graduated to making my own tweets, and using a scheduler to tweet for myself, and about seventy other authors, musicians, and eBay sellers.
Not too bad, if I do say so myself…
All my tweets for friends, as well as myself, have pictures.
Of course, Twitter steps in and changes Picture Tweets…
First, did you know that studies have shown that 85% of all activity on Twitter is from people using mobile devices? People engage, communicate, and post using their phones and tablets more so than with their PC or laptop. (Source…https://blog.twitter.com/2013/new-compete-study-primary-mobile-users-on-twitter).
Heehee…no wonder this country can’t get any work done!
“So, what’s the big deal about picture tweet changes,” you ask?
Well…if you’re using recurrent tweets with pictures, or quoting someone’s tweet, or copying a tweet for someone and using it as your own creation, the picture no longer shows up in the tweet. It’s a “text tweet” with a pictwitter link; basically, a useless form of media attached to your tweet. Here, let me show you what I see on my iPad…
This is a reused/recycled tweet. I tweet almost entirely from my iPad. This is what shows up on my tablet or phone..
Here’s the original of that same tweet posted the day before. This is what you’ll see if you use a laptop or PC on twitter. I won’t see this Picture unless I click the above pictwitter link…
No…Really! You have to click on the pictwitter link in order to see the picture. Who’s going to take the time and effort to do that?
OK, Taylor, what if I “Quote” a picture tweet?
Here’s what I see on my iPad…
Here’s the above tweet that was quoted. Look at the date of the original tweet. It’s a year old…
“Well…what if I copy a picture tweet?”
OK, so you copy a tweet to send out as your own for a friend (I do this quite a bit…#PayItForward)? Here’s the result seen on a mobile device…
“Well, Taylor, my tweets look just the same as they always did. I can see my picture in my tweet just fine.”
Really? Are you using a PC or laptop to tweet? You won’t see the changes if you are. I don’t see your pictures. On a tablet or phone, which is where 85% of Twitter users are located, including me, the picture isn’t in the tweet…it’s a link.
It’s a shame, going to all the trouble of finding pictures, making picture tweets, uploading and scheduling, and using up valuable writing time to market your material, then having Twitter hide it in a link (Damn their black souls). I used Gremln as my tweet scheduler for over a year. I sent out a picture tweet, copied it, and pasted it in the scheduler. Gremln used my book link and the pictwitter link, then posted it according to the schedule I had set. It worked fine. Well, not anymore…
I realize there are probably hundreds of sites out there that can, and do, get around this issue (God love computer Geeks! I do!) Thankfully, I found a solution to my problem. Tweet jukebox and Feed140 are the two sites I use for scheduling recurrent tweets with pictures. They both use a picture file, not a link, meaning you upload your picture and a fresh URL. You add a blurb to the mix and viola’! You have a recurrent tweet with a fresh pic and a fresh URL each time it goes out.
I hope this post helps. I know this is a pain. I’ve stressed over this for weeks. But, you want your picture tweets to be seen, right? If you know of, or use a tweet scheduler that uses a picture file, not a link, and you’d like to share, I’d love to hear from you. We are a tight-knit writing community and sharing is caring. Happy Tweeting! I’m off to RT like it’s my day job!
Write with passion…