The short story:
A heavy metal fan gets retweeted by his favourite band and experiences a modicum of fame.
The detailed story:
So, I'm an unabashed heavy metal head. I know. Several people have stopped reading this already. But the rest of you, please read along--there will be no gushing about "the 1980's was the greatest metal decade ever!" Yesterday, Iron Maiden released its new album The Book of Souls and to celebrate I decided to tweet a picture of the Iron Maiden jean jacket I painted back when I was in Grade Eleven. This is my tweet:
Funny, eh? I was amazed I could still almost fit into the jacket (as long as I didn't try to do the buttons up). The official Iron Maiden twitter account kindly retweeted my nostalgic tweet. Here's a screen grab of their twitter page:
As you can see they have 1.34 million followers. That's million with an M. I was both over the moon that some tiny portion of the Iron Maiden machine had noticed me and really curious what would happen with my tweet. So here are the official stats of that tweet:
Of those 1.34 million people who follow Iron Maiden on Twitter 52,671 of them looked at the tweet (or at least it appeared briefly on their screens). But 4860 engaged directly with it. That is they clicked to see the larger photo or expanded the "details" about it. 275 of those people "favorited" the tweet. 177 clicked on my profile. And 70 retweeted my tweet. And you can see by the number of replies that it led to some conversations with fellow fans (one even said, "up the irons" in solidarity). And 5 of them began to follow me.
5 new followers? Out of a possible 1.34 million? I wasn't surprised by that. After all only a small portion (or should I say a smidgen) would be interested in a YA writer.
I think this does show the level of engagement on twitter. Only a small percentage of the Iron Maiden twitter followers looked at my tweet (I'm sure a good portion of people just tune in every once in a while so the tweet vanished on their feeds). As an author, I wasn't expecting to sell books to these people, I just wanted to have fun. And it was fun. And it only took me a few minutes to take the pic and tweet it, so no "work" time was lost.
Plus, did I mention that @ironmaiden retweeted me! If only I could tell my 1984 self that this was going to happen. His head would explode.*
*of course I'd have to explain what Twitter was first, oh and the internet and mention that Iron Maiden inconceivably put out two albums without Bruce Dickinson and...well...it's a long list.
PS. This last photo is for those who are not faint of heart:
See. It almost fits.