After recently reviewing an article in Social Media Examiner, I wanted to post my perspectives on the tips they provided.
Twitter, simply put, is not just a numbers game. For your opinion to matter people need to actually care what you have to say. Building such a following can be done through the following four concepts:
- Find and follow relevant people.
- Tweet content that will be interesting to your target audience.
- Engage with your audience.
- Promote your Twitter account through other channels.
#1: Find and Follow Relevant People
Start with a strong profile.
Since most people will check out your profile before following you, it’s important to put your house in order and present yourself in the most engaging way possible.
Profile photo: Research has shown that people trust faces more that they’ve seen multiple times, which is why a photo of your smiling face works best.
Detailed bio: You can get surprisingly creative with 140 characters. Explain why you created your profile and why they should follow you.
Location: Where you live can either make or break a possibly business venture and even a few follows as most businesses today are local.
Discover new people with third-party tools.
Option 1: Twitter Directories
Option 2: Tools
- Twellow – Clean Interface. Recommended by Paul Wylie.
- WeFollow – for finding influencers. Also recommended by Paul Wylie.
- Tweepie – to check out people before one follows them. Recommended by Karen James.
- Manage Flitter – to do bio searches, as well as keep an eye on ones followers. Recommended by Karen Black.
With either of these, you can search by industry, location or keyword for starters.
Leverage other people’s Twitter lists.
Twitter users many times create lists or subscribe to other people’s lists to improve their “signal-to-noise ratio” (SNR). SNR is where, out of all the background noise made, in this case by millions of people’s tweets, a certain amount contains the proper signals for desired data.
In any case, as long as people make their lists public, you are free to subscribe to them, quickly getting access to dozens or hundreds of vetted Twitter users.
Use Twitter’s search functionality.
Use hash tags like #seo to get tweets of that particular tag. This allows one to search for related posts to, in this case, SEO.
You could then join the conversation by @ (mentioning) their Twitter handles, answering their questions and otherwise engaging them.
#2: Tweet Interesting Stuff
How do you find interesting content? Here are some ideas.
- Use Google Alerts.Set up Google Alerts (or a similar service) to get daily email updates about all of the things that are of interest to your audience. Next, share them through Twitter.
- Share media.Using photos to share your activity or events will help your business get click-throughs and comments.
- Talk to people, not at them.It is important that you talk to people on a more personal level rather than at them. Imagine how it would look like in a real-life scenario.
Engage with users as that will not only get you more followers, but will potentially drive in more business.
- Get involved with #chats.By joining the conversation at appropriate chats, you can quickly build your relevant followers. This assumes, though, that you have something valuable to add!
- Schedule chats to reach a wider audience.A tool like HootSuite or Buffer can help you schedule out a days’, weeks’ or months’ worth of tweets. I would recommend you use a scheduling tool to supplement your regular tweets rather than replacing them.
#4: Promote Your Twitter Account Through Other Channels
- Leverage the following you’ve built elsewhere by promoting your Twitter account.
- Talk up Twitter at your website, blog and through email.
- Leverage your social media outposts.
Include links (and calls to action) on Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube.
Certain platforms may not be as “chatty” as Twitter, and if we’re already connected on LinkedIn and you’re syncing all of your tweets and LinkedIn updates, what’s the value of getting the same content on Twitter?
- Get more visibility with a Paper.li newspaper.
Paper.li is a free service that allows you to create “newspapers” out of your Twitter feed (as well as some integration of Facebook and Google+).
Your daily paper.li can pull from the people you follow, your lists, or specific keywords or hashtags you include. Paper.li can also tweet out your daily paper, including which people contributed your “top stories.”
These tweets often get retweets from the people mentioned, and suddenly they are sharing your content with their network, thereby increasing your brand.