Yesterday, I pre-launched my book, “The #nocode chef” on Twitter.
As expected, my pre-launch did not make headline news. I knew it wouldn’t, and I debated with myself as to the best way to fix this. I thought I’d share my thought process here, since it goes very much against the “best practices” of product launches.
Am I writing a book for which there is no audience?
Good heavens, no! There is an audience. A massive audience, in fact. In fact, the #nocode ecosystem is growing fast, and in its fast growth it is creating a lot of chaos and confusion. My book settles the dust and clarifies things. There are plenty of people who will benefit from reading this.
So what’s the problem, exactly?
The problem is that I did not do the one thing that everybody (including me) always says must be done continuously: build my authority in my (new) field. I am plenty qualified to talk and write about #nocode, but few would know it since I don’t write or talk about it in public (I am very vocal about it over a cup of coffee, trust me).
And all those people who would/will benefit from reading my book? They are not in my circle of influence.
Although I have an email list of 10,000 people, 2,000 Twitter followers and about 1,500 connections/followers on Linkedin, few of them are interested in #nocode. Specifically, the 10k email list is for another industry altogether (health) and I cannot under any circumstances promote this book to those subscribers. It would be a violation of our trust, and wouldn’t do much good since it’s the wrong target market anyway. There is some overlap with my #nocode and my Twitter followers, but not that much.
My big Twitter mistake
The bigger problem – and one that I should have anticipated and fixed – is that over the last 18 months or so I have mostly been a passive consumer of Twitter. I spend hours on it every day, I learn so much from the people I follow, and I am inspired by them regularly. I didn’t tweet much because I felt I didn’t have much to say, but this never bothered me. My followers are still there, and I thought I would easily be able to reach them when/if I started tweeting regularly. (For the record, I used to tweet a lot. I have 14k tweets, and I joined Twitter so early in the game that I have a FOUR LETTER handle!).
But that’s not how the algorithm works. If you don’t tweet regularly, your reach diminishes. It sucks, but what are you going to do? As a result, my tweet when I announced the book only reached 53 people! And…that’s it. What else could I do? short of DM’ing everyone personally, that announcement died a silent death.
So yes, in a perfect world, my tweet would have been seen by more people, and definitely by more of the right people. They would have RT’d it, and my reach would have grown even more. Then those people would RT it further, and I would have a viral hit on my hands, resulting in a bestseller and a private island. But, no.
How to fix?
Luckily, I know this is a fixable problem. It needs a bit of time, and perseverance (spoiler alert: it requires an email list of true fans).
I am also going to change how I use Twitter. I will outline my strategy in another post, and will keep reporting back to see how I do, what I change and what I find that works very well. Hopefully, in a little while, these posts and observations will be a good resource of a “live tweeted” experience of growth on Twitter – no hindsight advantage, or confirmation bias.
In the meantime, please follow me on Twitter (@eved) and check out my book, The nocode chef!