Gaining Followers on Twitter

As the need for social media and social networking becomes more obvious to businesses, more businesses are using social media tools to get their name out to the public. Learning how to use these tools can cause businesses problems, however, because unless you really know the full advantages of the tools and how to achieve those advantages, you will not use social media to it’s fullest extent.

In this post, I will focus on the ways a business can increase its followers on Twitter.
It is one thing for a business to get set up with a Twitter account and to fill out their information and bios, but it is another thing for that business to get people to actually stumble across or search for their social network page.

When I began working as a social media consultant, my experience with helping a business use social media was minimal. I had set up, designed and updated a Twitter account for a San Francisco makeup artist, but did not know how to get people to get interested enough in her to search for her and follow her.

The trick, I learned, is being patient and dedicating more time and work to the social networks then one may think is necessary. As a result of patience and dedication, however, a business can use Twitter not just for social interaction but also as an effective marketing platform.

First, assuming you are not a huge public figure or one of the privileged few like Kim Kardashian or the New York Times, then you will not appear in Twitter’s Suggested Users list. Instead, you will be listed on the accounts and sign up pages of thousands of Twitterers daily.

Once listed on Twitter, you can use the feature Suggested Users by going to Find People > Browse Suggestions. This suggests some top Twitter users who you can choose to follow. Once you find a user to follow, try searching through and following their other followers, because chances are, they share similar interests and may be likely to follow you back if you request to follow them. That’s where patience is truly needed, in the process of following as many people as possible in hopes that they will request to follow you back. And just to make it clear, Suggest Users are suggested as a preselected list, not on a basis of your Twitter friends or tweeting behavior, so if you do make it onto the Suggest Users list, you will end up drawing in thousands of followers.

Second, in order to increase your visibility, you should treat your Twitter profile like and other website. In other words, use word of mouth, advertisements, other websites or blogs to create traffic to your Twitter page.

Here is a list of examples I found of some traffic-driving strategies:

1. Create a tool/application and promote your profile alongside it.
2. Buy a banner ad to target tech-savvy audiences, link it to your profile.
3. Use Twitter as a tool for tech/customer support.
4. Organize a contest through your Twitter profile
5. Include links to your profile in email/forum signatures.
6. Evangelize Twitter on your blog/other blogs and include a link to your profile.
7. Connect your blog and other social media profiles to your Twitter page.
8. Learn to pitch Twitter influencers with articles relevant to their interest
9. Explicitly ask another user to recommend your profile or exchange recommendations.

My third and last strategy I will discuss is hash tags. If you do not know what a hash tag is, maybe you have seen one in someone’s tweet. It looks like this: #inception. If you are sending a tweet that contains keywords that other Twitter users would tweet about or search for, then put a numeric sign in front of that word. When you put a hash tag in your tweet, your tweet will come up along with everyone else tweeting about something containing that same hash tag. Therefore, using hash tags is a good way to create visibility on Twitter.

Mainly, the level of input you put into Twitter account will determine the level of visibility your account receives. As a marketing platform, utilizing Twitter is worth it, so take the time to request friends and make a bigger name for yourself.



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