It’s been over three months since I proclaimed that I was going to try to be more ‘active’ on social media – namely Twitter – and while I’ve finally gotten round to filling in my bio (with a little bit of coaxing) and started tweeting more frequently, I’ve only really picked up about 20 more followers.
Now, I’ve never been particularly bothered about how many ‘friends’ I have on Facebook, so I shouldn’t really let this bother me, right? Well, Twitter’s all about having a voice and I’d like to think that although I’ve started off using the platform for recreational purposes until I get to grips with it, eventually, I’d like to be able to use it to influence people. So what am I doing wrong?
I turned to our very own Reem Heather Dabbas for advice. As someone who has managed to build up an impressive fan following pretty much from scratch, and in less than a year (if Twitter was an American high school, Reem would be Prom Queen…at least in the C&B offices), I knew she would have some surefire pointers for me. Here’s what she had to say:
- RETWEET like mad. People like having their content shared, and when they thank you, they will mention your name to their followers.
- Pick a topic/theme. Stick to something that will make people want to follow you to learn more about. This could be anything from Social Media to PR or even blogging. Choose a subject and become a spokesperson for it.
- Follow a bunch of people. The more users you follow, the more will follow you back. Be clever about it though, gauge whether the people you are following are likely to follow you back – generally if someone has 50,000 followers but is only following 50, they’re unlikely to return the favour.
- Stay updated on specific hash-tags. See what other people are saying about your chosen topics (i.e. #bloggers #blogs #blogging) and keep in line with trending conversations.
- Maintain activity and engagement. Sometimes there’s a Tweet that you can really comment about, which the original Tweeter might reply to, giving you the opportunity to get a conversation going.
Rich Leigh of 10 Yetis PR, on the other hand, suggests there’s more to gaining popularity on Twitter than just following your favourite celebrities and re-tweeting interesting stories. Although Rich’s article on Behind the Spin was written over a year ago, the advice still rings true for anyone hoping to establish an online presence.
I, for one, fully intend on taking these suggestions on board – with a little bit more originality and substance to my posts and strategic reasoning behind who I follow, maybe I can steadily make my way up Twitter’s social ladder too.
Will you follow me?