Building Your Twitter Following
In order for Twitter to be an effective marketing tool, you need to have followers, but building a Twitter following can be slow. You may look at others with large followings and wonder how they got to be so popular.
There are many reasons why some Twitterers have vastly more followers than others. Some have been using the network for many years and have built their followings over time. Some have received media attention or have spent a lot of time marketing their accounts. Others have paid for followers either legitimately through Twitter ads or using questionable services where you can buy a large number of Twitter followers for a low price.
While some people put a lot of stock in having a large number of followers, a big following does not always translate into real connections or value for yourself or your business. Sometimes, having a smaller number of followers who actually want to hear from you and actively respond to you or share what you tweet can prove to be more valuable than having many followers who ignore you.
Why would someone follow your business on Twitter? Everyone has their own individual reasons for following another Twitter account. Some reasons people might follow you include:
- They know you or want to get to know you.
- They do business with you or want to do business with you.
- You have shared interests.
- You are part of the same industry.
- They like the content you tweet.
Some people who follow a lot of people on Twitter may get a lot of followers in return because some of those followers may simply follow back anyone who follows them. Building up your own following by following others in hopes that they will follow you back may seem like a good idea, however, it can backfire on you. You’ll clutter your Twitter stream and could appear to be a spammer, particularly if you are following more people than follow you back.
Engage with others in conversation on Twitter to make connections. Respond promptly to your followers when they address you. Retweet others and be a curator of useful content. Post quality content on a consistent and frequent basis, and you will likely gain new followers when other people share what you post.
Twitter does offer advertising options to help build your following. You can spend money to buy followers, even highly targeted followers. Just like you can’t buy true friends, you can’t really purchase followers who are guaranteed to pay attention to you.
You can market the fact you’re on Twitter in a number of ways. Place a Twitter icon or a Twitter widget on your website or blog. Include Twitter share buttons on the content you publish on your site or blog. Mention your Twitter account on other social networks you use such as Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Add a Twitter icon or your Twitter handle to your print collateral, product packaging, and signage.
In business, if you provide a great product or service and market well, you should be able to gain and retain customers. In the case of Twitter, provide great content and market your Twitter presence, and that should eventually translate into followers who are attentive and responsive. Building a truly engaged following on Twitter definitely takes time.