Authors Using Twitter Handle As Author Name

It’s amazing how quickly Twitter has evolved into a household name.  Twitter’s purpose and application is even understood by those who are not Twitter users at all.  In other-words, everyone knows something about Twitter, because it’s everywhere.

I have talked to guys who are high level leaders in their organization and they told me that their company is, “now using the social media stuff and even set up a Twetter.” Yes he said “Tweeter” and he was excited that they would be able to become more connected to customers and potential customers.  You don’t have to be a Twitter aficionado to know that it’s a powerful information and connection tool.

Everyone leverages Twitter in different manners and it’s kind of “to each is own” type of deal.  Some businesses use it for advertisement, some people use it simply to find information, others use it to stalk people (in a good way), some news anchors use it at the end of their news casts to stay connected, celebrities use it as an extension to connect with fans and the list goes on and on.

I’m not sure if this is a trend; however I think you could see more authors using their Twitter handles as their author name on the cover of their books.  Especially if their Twitter name is their real name.  For several years I have been advocating the Reasons You Should Use Your Real Name As Your Twitter Name. Although there are hundreds of other Scott Williams in the Twittershphere, I have had @ScottWilliams since Twitter launched in 2007 and it has made it relatively simple to use it as part of my personal brand.

I am releasing a book week and I chose to use my Twitter handle @ScottWilliams on the cover as my author name (you can see in the above pic).  Due to the fact that it’s my real name, there is no potential for a negative effect, only potential for natural connection with readers via Twitter.  Even if someone doesn’t purchase the book, they at-least might remember the Twitter handle because of the uniqueness.

I know a couple of ladies who wrote a book titled @StickyJesus in which they used their Twitter handles as their author names.  Authors @TamiHeim and @ToniBirdsong uniquely blend biblical truth and social media know-how with inspirational true stories of people engaging, connecting, and changing the world for Christ through social networks.

Again, I’m not saying that this is going to be a trend, I’m simply saying that having your real name or a version of your real name as your Twitter handle allows for flexibility, visibility and potential.

Have you seen any authors who have used their Twitter handle as their author name?  Do you think it could be a trend for authors and recording artists?

  • Good stuff man! I hear some of that stuff to…

    One thing I can think of is that it could “date” your book. You and I both know that Twitter has a shelf life, and hopefully your book lives on long past twitter is gone. Unless you do a reprint, people pass it up because the book looks “old.”

    If I saw a book and the guy listed his ICQ (or MySpace URL) number on the front, I would think the book was a zillion years old and the info inside was outdated. (Even though ICQ and MySpace aren’t all that old.)

    Not sure if that makes sense, but just a thought I had…..

    Thankful you man!

    • Scott Williams

      Well said… I thought about that, I could just drop the @ or they would know the time period that it released.

  • I’ve using my real name @LynnSerafinn well before I released my first book. I know for a fact it not only helped my visibility but was a contribiting factor in it becoming a bestseller. I also have twitter handles in the name of that book @gardenofthesoul and also my uncoming book @7gracesmarketng, which is a bit of a stretch, as the whole title does actually FIT in the space allowed, but it does allow me to cultivate a niche specifici audience for that particular book. Twitter is the cornerstone not just of my own book sales, but also for the promotional campaigns I do for other authors via my biz @SpiritAuthors. A lot of people don’t “get” Twitter, but frankly I see it as the gateway to everything else I do on the web.

    BTW… follow me… I follow back. 😉

    Warm wishes,
    Lynn Serafinn

  • Scott, Don’t you love it when you have a fairly important meeting to attend, they know you know SM better than them – and they want to tell YOU that they have had a Twitter account for a year but have not done ‘much’ with it?
    I’m just waiting for my turn to speak – so I can point out only the top three wildfires that they can extinguish quickly and risk-free, before I ask them if they’d like me to also talk with them about a long-term strategy.

  • I like to sign blog comments with my Twitter handle/Gravatar. As you can see.

  • I managed to stake my claim on my own name, albeit with an underscore between first & last (@joe_sewell). Will I use it on my book? Right now I don’t see it happening, mainly because I tend to be a Facebook guy more than a Twitter guy (or a “Twetter,” as that one guy said). On the other hand, some of my online IDs reflect my former association with the first fan-written Ultraman site. (Ultraman, for you youngsters who didn’t see the Japanese import in the 60’s & 70’s, is a giant monster-fighting alien.) I’ve straddled that line long enough that I don’t want to get rid of it.

    I think the utility of using your Twitter ID as your author name really depends on the focus of the book. Something involving technology is an obvious fit for such a concept. Something targeted to, say, church leadership might not. As always one needs to consider the main target audience. If a Twitter ID fits, go for it. If it doesn’t, there’s little harm in going “old school.”

  • I’d only ever recommend somebody do this on a book specifically about twitter. While it is cute and trendy, it also quickly dates the book as a previous commenter pointed out.

    I am also under the belief that too many people are centering their lives around a certain site or technology. I hope are you taking the time to build a following via your email list too. That is more important than having a big twitter or following or a lot of Facebook fans.

    • I agree that it can date the release and e-mail lists and blog subscribers are a great core. If your Twitter handle is your name it’s not that big of a deal and an easy fix in future prntings.

  • Lots of stuff I learned just by swinging by here today, sheesh.

  • Catrina Thomas

    Well,I don’t know A from Z whenever it comes to this type of stuff. The @ScottWilliams on the book did stand out to me because I’d never seen it before. I didn’t even know that it was called a Twitter handle.

  • I think its brilliant. I’m fortunate enough to have my real name as my twitter handle, which I look forward to putting on the cover of a book in the very near future. The use of the Twitter handle doesn’t negatively affect your branding, lends a sense of modern relevance, and minimizes the opportunity for distraction in media.

    If your book was sitting on my desk and I happened to glance at it, the logical next step would be to type in That’s a powerful transition right there.

  • There is a version of my real name in my twitter handle (@Beckyinreallife) and I enjoy it. If I used my whole name it would be 17 Characters long and not memorable due to the ridiculous last name I have. All in all I’m pleased with my handle and I’m not likely to write a book so I’m fine with it.

    I love that you used your twitter handle as your author name. It opens up a whole world of connectivity with the author and really let’s the reader find out who you are.

  • Thanks… I’m sure your last name is fine.

  • Yea, the @ScottWilliams stands out for sure. Your cover is very slick. And I think your twitter handle compliments the overall design of the cover. I’m reading Dale Carnegie’s How to win friends… and it is a trillion years old. I say that to say GREAT CONTENT IS GREAT CONTENT.

    Go Win!

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