There are lots of articles around the internet telling you how to grow your following on Twitter and other social media, a quick Google search on the phrase “How to grow my twitter following” gave me over 7 million results. I’m not pretending to know everything there is to know about Twitter, in fact there is still an awful lot I need to learn, this article is intended to share what has worked for me over the past year or so.
In March 2017 I had around 200 followers on Twitter, but I wanted to get my photography out to a wider audience. At the start of the year I started a photo-a-day challenge to post one picture a day. This regular posting was beginning to get me a few more followers but I wanted more so this is what I did.
1. Post regularly and consistently
As I said above I had started a daily challenge, this gave me a regular post. I started off with one post a day at the same time every day. I have a hectic life so getting to my computer at the exact same time every day isn’t always possible so I made use of buffer.com a great scheduling tool that lets me queue up my posts across all my social media platforms. They offer a free option which will get you started. and give you that regular consistent presence.
2. Follow People Whom You Would like to Follow You Back
Although it isn’t obligatory to follow back anyone who follows you, lots of people do. So if you follow them there is a good chance they will follow you back. Don’t feel aggrieved particularly if they already have lots of followers they may not be as concsious of new followers as you are starting out on your twitter journey.
3. Follow Back People Who Follow You
Following on from No. 3 if you are expecting people who you follow to follow back it is only fair that you reciprocate. A word of warning though, if a new follower looks like someone you don’t want to be associated with or don’t want to see their tweets, best block that account. It will mean a drop in followers but it’s worth the sacrifice.
4. Be Sociable
Twitter is a social media platform, so be sociable, engage with the people you are following and your followers by retweeting or commenting on their posts. you don’t have to go overboard, be genuine, if you like a picture retweet it or if you want to say something about it say it, be polite though. There is too much negativity on social media, don’t add to it. I always think of my Mum’s phrase “If you can’t say something nice to say don’t say anything”
5. Thank New Followers
Another way to be sociable is to thank your new followers. You can do this manually or use one of the third party tools to help out. I was using a recipe on iffft.com to thank new followers automatically, you can also set up a free commun.it account to do the same. Once I started to get lots of new followers I stopped this as my twitter feed was dominated by thank you for following tweets.
6. Follow Anyone who Retweets or Likes Your Posts
If someone likes or retweets one of your posts they may recognise your name so if you follow them there is a good chance they will follow you back and hopefully retweet more of your posts in the future.
7. Thank People for Retweeting
I started off once a week manually thanking people for retweeting me. As my following and retweet rate went up this got too much so I stopped. I have recently started using commun.it which will automatically thank people who are your top retweets, interactions etc. I am still learning my way around the site so will probably make a few mistakes along the way as you will. Don’t let this put you off. It is social media, things move so quickly any hiccups are easily forgotten, even if you are in the public eye.
8. Retweet Hashtags
There are twitter accounts that will retweet your posts if you follow them and use their tag, this is a good way to increase your exposure to a wider audience when you are just starting out. I use 87 Tangerines RT (@87Retweet) #87RT there are other hashtags around that you can use and accounts will retweet you.
9. Keep Your Account Tidy
I use who.unfollowed.me to help me find new followers I have missed. It also lets me see anyone who has unfollowed me so I can do the same, it also shows who hasn’t followed you back and lets you unfollow them. Also there is no sense in following accounts that are no longer active. I use untweeps.com to have a monthly weeding session. You can set the inactivity period and it will show you all the accounts you are following that haven’t been active in that time. I set it to a month when I run it.
10. Local Business Hours
Business hours are live sessions where groups can get together and discuss and promote your business. Everyone in the discussion uses the relevant hashtag so everyone taking part can see the conversation. These groups are great for getting you noticed locally and some ask that you follow everyone who has been part of that weeks discussion, see @Dartmoor_Hour for an example. I have noticed locally though that most of the posts during the sessions are automated which defeats the object really so I am on the look out for different groups. I only use these when I have the time.
I hope you will find the above useful. I don’t have a regimented way of doing things and if don’t do something for a few days it doesn’t matter, the most important factor is regular and consistent posting. Over time I have increased my daily posts and currently have four scheduled each day but may decide this is too much and reduce again. I queue my posts up once a week then daily retweet things I like, if I have the time. If you want to follow me on twitter follow @HelenNorthcott