Using #hashtags effectively on Twitter

Using hashtags on Twitter can be a way of broadening the reach of your message. They are used by people searching for offers, or others with similar interests. But which hashtags work and which don’t? And how should they be used in a tweet? I recently saw a tweet with #kindle #amazon #borrow #free #thriller #today #news and five other hashtags that would identify the tweeter. It was a little over the top. Tweeting courtesy suggests you should not use more than three hashtags in a tweet, but in any case sometimes excessive self-promotion works against your offer. Let’s say you want to post the availability of an ebook for free. Are you better to use #ebook, or #ebooks; #freeebooks or #free#books? Or some other combination, perhaps #free, #amazon, and #ebook?

You can check out the potential usefulness of each hashtag at which provides a graph of use over the last seven days and a list of those using it recently. Here is a graph for #ebooks.

The result above shows the proportion of tweeters using this hashtag. Looks like less than 0.01%. So let’s see what the result is if we leave the “s” off and use #ebook. We can see that the percentages are almost double that of #ebooks.

Now perhaps we might consider #free. Less specific, less targeted, but about fifty times the number of users as #ebooks. This is quite a high percentage, although it looks small, because many tweeters still don’t use hashtags. Using several hashtags together can be powerful. Below is the chart for #free.

Using these hashtags will expose your message to potentially many more users.  Try a few different words or subject headings and see what works for you.


The reviews keep on comin’…

Thanks Paul Christy for this wonderful five star review for No Remorse:

5.0 out of 5 stars No Remorse means merciless action!, January 23, 2012
Paul Christy (Houston, Texas USA) – See all my reviews
This review is from: No Remorse (Paperback)

As an obsessive reader of the thriller/military/crime genres, I am very excited to have discovered Ian Walkley. If you, like me, have read everything out there from early Richard Stark to the latest Lee Child, you know we need more! We get more from newcomer Ian Walkley, and his novel No Remorse. I ran across No Remorse and was immediately drawn in. There is violent action from page one. In fact, I had been reading Zero Day by David Balducci and had to put it aside until I had finished No Remorse. The evildoers are truly despicable and our flawed hero Lee McCloud is the no-nonsense tough guy perfect for punishing them. As a bonus, this thriller is a time capsule of this decade, with many references to geopolitical happenings as timely as today’s headlines. Whereas other heroes such as John Sanford’s Lucas Davenport have softened and lost their punch over the years, Walkley’s McCloud should be expected to keep on brutalizing bad guys for years to come. Highly recommended.

Guest blog with crime suspense author Sandy Curtis

Ian Walkley has No Remorse

Brisbane writer Ian Walkley is one of the new generation of self-published novelists, with his debut novel, No Remorse, recently launched on Amazon and Smashwords. The non-stop action thriller, set in Europe and the Middle East, follows a former Army Special Operations commander on a personal mission to rescue a friend’s kidnapped daughter, only to discover a much bigger threat than he could possibly imagine.

With author JJ Cooper, who penned The Interrogator and Deadly Trust, describing No Remorse as “An edgy thriller that gets straight into the action and doesn’t let up, a plausible plot with a strong and engaging protagonist—intelligent thriller writing”, Ian looks set to establish himself as a thriller writer to watch out for.

Ian, your main character, Lee McCloud, is described as “a loose cannon” by his superior in the secret organisation which he is forced to join. Why do they believe this?

McCloud is a Delta Force special ops guy, trained for the toughest missions, deniable, highly intelligent, used to making quick decisions under extreme pressure. You can bet the bosses worry about whether someone like that can be controlled. Especially after McCloud leads a personal mission, unsanctioned, to rescue two kidnapped girls, which goes terribly wrong.

Read the full interview at Sandy

Review of No Remorse

5.0 out of 5 stars No Remorse, January 8, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
This review is from: No Remorse (Kindle Edition)

Intriguing,pacey and very compelling, this action- thriller is well researched and well written. Great characters, gripping plot together with conflict and suspense, a very polished novel is presented by the author. I can’t wait for the next from Walkley.

Ebook link:

Print version link: