Twitter is an undeniably powerful platform for those looking to promote anything.
All social media platforms have their benefits and drawbacks, but Twitter’s fast paced, all-public posts appeal to many different walks of life. Folks from all over the world come together to share their lives and companies in 140 characters or less. This makes it a great platform for many kinds of businesses, big and small.
Today, we will talk about how to grow your audience on Twitter. Maybe you’ve just signed up and you’re starting from scratch; or perhaps you’ve been on Twitter a while and you feel that you could make more from it. If either sounds familiar, read on.
There are a few ground rules we must cover before we get on with the list. Firstly, there are unscrupulous sorts out there that allow you to buy followers, but don’t be duped! The accounts that follow you within these schemes are usually junk; accounts that may as well be empty and provide no real value or engagement. Today we are going to explore ways to encourage real interest over Twitter – gaining real flesh-and-blood followers in a sustainable and meaningful way.
We must also remember that having a large amount of followers is not inherently a mark of success. It’s better to have 100 relevant and engaged followers than 10,000 irrelevant and indifferent ones. By focusing in on what you want to achieve by using Twitter, you can help attract the right people; and knowing what you want from using the platform may also help you with some of these steps.
1. Fully Customise your Profile
Your profile page can be customised with an avatar image (the small picture that shows next to your posts), a header image (the large picture that shows at the top of your profile), your name, a link to your website, your geographical location as well as a short space for short introductory text (called your “bio”). You can also change the accent colour that shows on your profile – this works best when you match a colour from your branding. It gives a professional look and therefore positions you as a reliable and established organisation; so complete them all and get your profile looking smart.
2. Look at Your Competitors
Find your company’s competitors on Twitter and look at what sorts of things they’re sharing. How are they using Twitter? How frequently do they post? What kind of content do they share? Look at their more popular posts and see what you can emulate with strictly no outright copying; just use related content as inspiration to find your own style. You can also see who your competitors follow and who follows them; this might give you some interesting ideas as to who to follow, as well as an idea of what online circles your competitor moves in.
3. Find, Use & Interact with Hashtags
People use hashtags to pinpoint important key terms in their posts, so those who are looking for information about key terms can find relevant posts easily. Therefore, using appropriate and popular hashtags helps to boost your visibility to relevant people. Use Twitter’s various search options to find posts that relate to your industry. Hopefully more than a few posts will include hashtags that relate to your field. Analyse the hashtags that people are using to talk about industry-relevant topics, give them a spin and see what works for you. We’ll talk about monitoring your success later.
4. Share General Updates About Your Business
Once you’ve got a good idea of what your competitors are doing and you know what hashtags people are using to talk about your field, it’s time to get out there and start sharing. Start with a few general updates about your company; this can be day-to-day stuff, tips, thoughts and musings; highlights about specific products or services; or updates and content from yourself and your team. If you have any upcoming events or releases, social media is a great place to promote them. Remember to use any relevant hashtags to help increase visibility.
5. Curate Useful Content from Elsewhere
As with most things on social media, updates and content that you share shouldn’t all be about yourself. Sure, share your own content, offers, blog posts and product details; but your readers may also find related information from other organisations useful. If you read an article or see a video that teaches you something you didn’t know, or looks at an industry issue from a unique and insightful perspective, chances are you aren’t the only person that will benefit. Your followers, and even your potential clients may do too. Using social media as a business is all about positioning yourself as a credible source of information – whether that information initially originated from you or not.
6. Follow Others
It’s quite to hard to put this tip within an order on this list. You can of course start following whomever you like at any stage, but to be in with a chance of getting people to follow you back, you need to have some tweeted content to make following you appear worth anyone’s while. Following back those who follow you is a valuable part of Twitter interaction, so those you follow who are interested in what you do may reciprocate and follow you back. Therefore strategic follows can earn you a handful of valuable follow-backs. Check out your competitor’s followers and the accounts that they follow to give you some suggestions. Another pro-tip here is to import contacts from another platform into Twitter; as people who know you from elsewhere are more likely to follow you back and interact. Simply log into your account, turn your attention to the “Who to follow” box on the top right, and click “Find friends” near the bottom; and from here it’ll guide you through the process of importing your contacts from a number of platforms such as Gmail and Outlook.
7. Use Networking Hashtag Hours
Twitter is a great place to network too. There are many “hashtag hour” groups available: promotional and networking groups that allow you to promote and chat within a set time by simply using the group’s hashtag. This comes with the added bonus that all posts are still public, and any content provided within a hashtag group is still available publicly. It pays to actually interact with these groups and get talking, rather than simply posting once and leaving. Hanging around the same groups consistently and getting to know the regulars is a great way to network from the comfort of your own living room.
8. Use Twitter Analytics to Identify Best Performing Content
Twitter Analytics is a free platform accessible to all Twitter users to gauge the success of their posts and account as a whole. You can see how many people have interacted with individual tweets, how many people saw your tweets, as well as how many likes, retweets, replies and follows you’ve received within any given time period. You can easily see which of your tweets got the best response so you can emulate their style or content in future. If there are things that are obviously not working, you can decide whether to continue with those or not. Frequently keep an eye on things to make sure you’re making steady progress.
Hopefully these steps have given you an idea of how to grow your Twitter audience. However it’s important to realise that growing your following on any social platform isn’t something you can just “set and forget.” Revisit these steps every so often to keep your account growing – you never know where it might take you!You’re just 8 steps away from growing your Twitter audience organically... Click To Tweet
What sorts of things do you want to get out of Twitter? How do you currently use it? What would you most like to change? Which is your favourite social media platform? Please share your thoughts down in the comments!