How are Top #Pitmad Authors Pitching?

How are Top #Pitmad Authors Pitching?

Pitmad is an event where authors pitch agents on Twitter for representation. The Tweets include a short description of their finished manuscript with some hashtags that identify the category (like #YA for young adult or #T for thrillers.) If an agent is interested in an author’s pitch, they Like the Tweet, which is an invitation to begin next steps.

I did a quick analysis of the recent #Pitmad Twitter event from March 8, 2018. I grabbed the data from Twitter to see what patterns I could find with March’s #Pitmad submissions.

Here’s what I found that might help your future pitches:

There were about 14,000 Tweets pitching books or discussing #Pitmad that day. Most of them were pitching YA (16%), Adult (14%), Fantasy (10%) but the response from agents wasn’t received in that order. More on that in a bit.

I selected Tweets that received 10+ Likes. There were a very large number with a hand full of Likes, but decided to analyze the ones that received a huge amount of attention. By using 10 as my cutoff, I ended up with the top 50 Tweets from the event pitching manuscripts.


Of those popular posts:

  • The median number of hashtags used in these high-performing pitches was 4. That, of course, includes #Pitmad, so three category hashtags (#YA, #OWN, #T) was the median approach used by successful authors
  • 64% included an “X meets Y” approach in the pitch (THE SHINING meets SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE)
  • 74% of the super successful pitches were from women (5% higher than overall #Pitmad participation)
  • Median Twitter follower count for super successful pitches was around 1,200, so a huge following isn’t a must to get noticed. The median Twitter following for top requested authors was 982, which seems pretty high, and indicates a good amount of Twitter use.

Above is a look at high performing pitches vs. the overall population, by category. Basically, YA is hugely popular but not batting above its weight as well as OwnVoices, which generated 22% of the most popular Tweets with agents from only 3% of all Pitmad Tweets. Women’s Fiction, YA, and Contemporary follow, all over-indexing with popularity. On the other side, you probably shouldn’t pitch your picture book at #Pitmad.

That’s what I found this time around. Have you found any good data points to help drive your pitches? Let me know.

*I’d like to thank C.P Byers for his suggestions on analysis after reading this original post. Thanks!

2 thoughts on “How are Top #Pitmad Authors Pitching?”

  • Chris,
    This data is great. I found this article incredibly useful and interesting. I would like to add a suggestion for you. Instead of using the delta percentage, I think it would be more useful to use a multiplicative comparison. For example, I want to be able to say “Despite #OWN comprising only 3% of all tweets, they accounted for for 22% of the popular tweets for a yield of 7.33.” In my opinion, it would be more useful and it also better demonstrates your logical conclusions, and uncovers others. For instance, per population, OWN and WF fared better than YA. Also SF pitches were more likely to become popular than F. I don’t know what to call it, so I said yield, though it’s not strictly correct. Values are below. Cheers!

    OWN 7.33
    WF 4.00
    YA 3.63
    CON 2.67
    SF 2.50
    F 2.40
    A 1.57
    MG 1.33
    PB 0.31

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