In my last post I talked about who you should follow on Twitter. Today I’m going to talk about some strategies for getting more Twitter followers.
There are basically two phases to building a follower profile on Twitter. In Phase I, you’re following people hoping that they will follow you back.
In Phase I, you’re following more people than are following you.
In Phase II, you start following people because you want to build a relationship with them. People start following you because you’re posting all sorts of amazing content, and will do so whether you’re following them or not.
In Phase II, you’re following fewer people than are following you. You don’t have to follow more people at all in this phase unless you specifically want to forge a relationship with someone.
In fact, following more people can be detrimental, as you can lose track of the people you really interact with on a regular basis.
So, here are the strategies that will get you to Phase II.
1. Don’t follow everyone who follows you.
You don’t have to, and it just clutters up your news feed. Follow people who you feel you can form a relationship with, no more, no less.
Do this from day 1.
This may seem counter-intuitive since you’re following some people because they hope they follow you back. But this is just a little ping on their shoulder.
Typically you’re going to have to do a lot more work to build those relationships. So don’t feel like you have to do round-robin follows, even when you’re just getting started.
2. Use Hashtags
I can’t praise the site Hashtags.org enough. Even the free version tells you which hashtags are successful and which aren’t.
Hashtag.org also proposes alternatives that you may not have thought of. It’s keyword research for hashtags.
Without hashtags, interested people simply will not find your content. It’s the signal that all of the major social search engines now use, so it’s important to pay attention to them on Facebook, Google+, and Pinterest as well.
3. Be Consistent About Posting Great Content
Make sure you’re posting content to your Twitter stream on a regular basis. Keeping up with your blog? Then this step shouldn’t be hard.
4. Share Freely
I’ve talked before about re-tweeting other people’s content. If you mention someone on your blog, you should also think about tweeting their Twitter username when you tweet the blog post, at least on the first tweet.
This method generates conversations very quickly and can open up other opportunities as well. It’s a much faster way to let bloggers know that you’re paying attention and interacting with their content than simply hoping they notice your generous backlink.
5. Keep Talking
Remember, Twitter is a big conversation. So make sure you pay attention to your mentions and direct messages.
When someone mentions you they’re initiating a conversation. It would be rude not to respond. At the very least you should think about thanking them for the shout-out.
6. Host a #Chat
If you have time and a great topic, think about hosting a chat every week at the same time. Mark the chat with a hashtag.
Pose a great question. Tweet some tips. And respond to conversations as they come up.
This happens in real time. It can’t be automated!
If this concept is confusing for you look for a relevant #chat that you can join until you get the hang of it. Even participating in chats in a meaningful way can be an immense boost to your overall profile.
7. Stay Fixated on Quality
Remember, the quality of your interactions matters far more than the quantity of your followers. Ironically, however, staying focused on delivering a high-quality, high-value experience is likely to get you a higher quantity of followers, too.