Is Twitter as great a thing as the people I follow on Twitter make it out to be? I’m trying to buy in to it, in the hopes that it’ll be a valuable tool to promote BOWERY BOYS, but it’s the first technology I’ve encountered that makes me feel like a complete Luddite. Everything about it leaves me scratching my head, from the mechanics and etiquette of tweeting and re-tweeting, to the philosophical questions of why it exists and broader effect it’s having on our society. But many others seem to have been able to harness its power for good and evil, so there must be something I’m just not getting, right?
I’m pretty convinced it’s a waste of my time, and yet I find myself dealing with feelings of jealousy over how many more followers you have than me. This is how Twitter makes me feel:
Sure, it’s clear to me that it’s a valuable branding tool. A Twitter feed can effectively keep a brand top of mind for its customers — and that applies whether you’re a fast food chain, movie star, athlete or a comic book creator. But the key to that idea and the critical difference in our scenario is that it only works if you have a brand. We don’t have a brand (yet) because BOWERY BOYS has yet to be published. People don’t yet know what Ian and I are capable of, and although we plan to show the world soon enough, most people other than friends and fam don’t have something to latch on to in order to seek us out in the Twitterverse. We are unknown commodities who aspire to be known for the quality of our work, and we are marching along through the murky process of achieving that goal.
That said, we know comics publishing to be a war of attrition, and the launch numbers for any comic book series are critical — especially a creator-owned, self-published series — as most series’ audiences unfortunately trend downward from issue to issue. So how do I leverage the technology available to me to put butts in the seats, and to do so for Issue 1? The more people are with us from jump street, the greater likelihood we can make a real go of it. But I’m not clear how Twitter can help in that effort and improve the chances of BOWERY BOYS becoming the success we want it to be.
If I understand it correctly (and I probably don’t), Twitter is very much a self-fulfilling prophecy. You need to use Twitter (a lot) to empower Twitter. But can anyone give me an idea of the return on investment? If I start tweeting 5, 10 or 20 times daily, can I actually expect more people to check out BOWERY BOYS than otherwise wouldn’t? If you’re a tweeter, let me know how that’s going for you. And if you’re a comics creator, would you share what kind of traction you feel your getting by using Twitter?
In the meantime, here’s a treat for you from an early action sequence in BOWERY BOYS 1, in gratitude for your tolerance of my ignorance and frustrations.
And if you don’t already, follow me on Twitter for more inane, nonsensical, pointless ramblings on reality television, tacos, Kardashians, dubstep, LeBron James and iphones.