The advantages of Twitter can be seen when businesses or individuals communicate online the same way they would in face-to-face interactions. Social media has revolutionized the way people connect, and maintaining these connections through two-way communication patterns can lead to a larger following.
Makes sense right? The only way to be heard is if people are listening. On Twitter, however, there is a lot of noise on users' timelines so it is easy for your messages to get lost in the clutter. So, the trick to gaining more followers is making people want to listen to you.
Twitter is a social medium. Because of this it is imperative that, in seeking more followers, a Twitter user socializes as opposed to simply talking. Being seen as engaging and considerate of followers will get the ball rolling.
Push marketing is no longer relevant. It's great if your brand has competitive advantages in prices and selection, but those have the ability to sell themselves. Tweeps (Twitter peeps) do not want to be force-fed information about why they should shop somewhere or buy a certain product. Doing so will likely result in your follower count actually going down.
Remember to provide variety in your tweets. Along with information and links to yourself, mix in comments on current events and industry news.
Do your best to provide relevant and interesting information that pertains to you and your followers. If your business acts as an expert in your industry on Twitter then your followers will refer to your page as a knowledgeable source.
The process of gaining more followers really begins with the visual aspects of your page. One of the first things prospective followers notice is a profile picture. Make sure your picture is you or a logo synonymous with your brand to establish identity. Your bio is also important in gaining clicks on the follow button. Be concise yet descriptive enough to be intriguing.
Some will follow you based on your name and bio alone but others will go on to examine your most recent tweets to see if you are worth following. Consider if your tweets are readable and not filled with unnecessary hashtags. Hashtags are great because even broad terms show up in a Twitter search but cramming as many as possible into one tweet reduces clarity.
Be a Follower
The way you follow others also plays a role in the growth of your own followers. Try to be strategic but not too selective. Follow those similar to you and begin retweeting, responding and mentioning them. Interacting with well-established names increases the chances of your content reaching a larger audience.
Going off of that, as an individual, it is easy to reach new audiences by contributing articles to sites relevant to your industry. This creates awareness of your name and shows knowledge and competence in relation to the topic of choice.
Be a Listener
Once more people begin following you, you face the task of holding their attention. Keep doing what got you to this point. Respond to inquiries or questions as well as general mentions. Every single mention does not have to be addressed but it is necessary to show that you are listening. Further, do not shy away from criticism and complaints. Rumors and opinions spread rapidly in the online community so establishing accountability is key.
As far as tweet content goes, remember to provide variety. Along with information and links to yourself, mix in comments on current events and industry news.
New followers are always right around the corner. Every now and then don't be afraid to actually ask for a retweet to try and reach extended networks. You might be surprised how many people oblige you. Also, especially in small businesses, encourage employees to respond and retweet content to their followers to get the initial messages out there.
DON'T Be a Robot
Twitter accounts are not run by robots. Don't make it sound like yours is. Using real-world communication skills online adds a personal touch to your tweets and gives a positive identity to your brand. The more personal your Twitter is, the more likely it can contribute to lead generation for your business.
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This article was written by IW Social Media Intern: Kevin MacPhee