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#Hashtags on Twitter

Twitter is a strange bird, indeed. If you’re new to Twitter and you don’t understand what you’re seeing, it can be rather intimidating, but used correctly, Twitter is a powerful marketing and community building tool. I dedicate a rather large section of my book Publishing & Marketing Realities for the Emerging Author to Twitter because it is so very important, as are other social networks, but Twitter and Facebook are currently the biggest and most effective on a large scale.

Here is an excerpt from the book about Hashtags:

Hashtags, which look like this: #, enable you to follow specific topics on Twitter. By adding a hashtag to your tweets, you can join in on larger conversations. This method reaches more people than one can by simply @replying. Popular hashtags for writers are the #amwriting tag, #selfpublishing tag, and the fun #1k1hr tag, which is a place where you join other authors in getting in the zone to write at least one thousand (1K) words and for at least one hour (1HR) before stopping.
Wednesdays are Writer Wednesdays, or #WW. Here you can find many other authors on Twitter with whom to interact.

Fridays are Follow Friday, or #FF. Again, great place to find new people.
If you’ve ever heard someone talk about “trending topics” on Twitter, this is when there are millions of people using the same key words or hashtags. You can look at trending topics and join in those larger conversations as well, or just watch the TwitterVerse stream by.

Following trends and using hashtags is also a wonderful way to find quality followers. Follow them first, interact with them by using @replies, and hopefully they’ll follow you back.

By following these discussions, you can tap into a larger Twitter community that falls into your niche, meet new friends, and learn a lot about social networking, the business of publishing, and what you’re up against as an emerging author.

Popular Hashtags (#) for Writers
#yalitchat  #steampunkchat  #selfpublishing  #amwriting  #1k1hr  #writechat #writersroad  #litchat  #kitlitchat  #publishing #WW  #WriterWednesday  #authors

Hashtags can be used for a variety of reasons like following a larger conversation (easier to do in TweetChat or TweetDeck than on the web), connecting with other writers or colleagues, and for comedic value. Because hashtags have become so prevalent on Twitter with some Tweets consisting of little else than a string of hashtags and a link, some have begun using them for comedy, and it works well for that, too. They can be used as a way to show your followers a little more about you and your sense of humor. #IAmWriterHearMeRoar

If you use Twitter on the web, you can click on any hashtag and see a list of people using it. The same works for pretty much any Twitter client (i.e. TweetDeck, Twitter for iPhone/iPad, Twitter for Blackberry, etc.). In TweetDeck you can dedicate columns to a specific hashtag and follow the conversation that way.

Plug some of these hashtags into TweetChat and see what comes up. You’ll start to understand how it works.

#justsaying #steampunkchat #chaphop #myWANA #steamtuesday

So next time you see an interesting hashtag on Twitter, join in on the conversation.

Have fun!

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