5 Ways to Grow Your Social Media Following

You set up your Facebook and Twitter pages and you posted a few things. After a couple of months you have 20-30 followers but none that are interacting with your posts. What do you do now? Growing your social media following takes time and persistence. Here are five tactics to start building your following and increase your presence on social media.

Let People Know Where to Find You

One of the easiest ways to grow your following is to tell people where to find you. Your website should have prominently displayed widgets that link to your social media pages. Also, be sure to include social media links in your newsletter and in your email signature so people can easily click through and follow you. As a best practice, try to match your social media handles to your website URL.

Participate in Twitter Chats

Twitter chats, also known as a tweet chats, are a great way to meet other people on Twitter and engage in conversation. These are live events that are hosted and moderated by an individual or company at a scheduled time. Participants follow the conversation using a designated hashtag. You can find Twitter chats on TweetReports listed by topic or on Twubs by date.

Invest in Targeted Facebook Ads

For a small financial investment, you can significantly increase the reach of your Facebook posts or increase your fan base. Facebook created a simple, self-service platform for businesses to create their own campaigns. With boosts and ads, you can increase the number of people who see the posts on your page and you can choose who you would like them. If you want to attract more followers to your page, you can create ads to encourage people to view and like your page.

Follow and Follow Back

On Facebook, take time to find and follow the pages of your business partners, vendors and community groups like your local chamber. When you like another page as your page, they receive a notice and will likely follow you in return. You should also find businesses and people in your network on Twitter and follow them. Use hashtags to search keywords and places to find people and businesses to follow. Twitter will also make suggestions on who to follow based on your current followings.

Share Other People’s Content

Everyone likes to feel valued for their work. Sharing other people’s content that is relevant to your audience provides valuable content for your followers and gives a virtual pat on the back to the author. Be sure to tag the author to give credit for their work.

Successful social media pages do not happen overnight. Using these tactics will put growth in motion, but you will need to continue this process to consistently increase the followings on your social media pages. Ideally, social media growth strategies should be included in your annual marketing plan and integrated into your marketing plan tactics.

23 Questions to Ask When Creating a Social Media Strategy

Social media has the potential to increase the visibility of your company, give brand advocates a forum to promote your brand and possibly increase sales, if you do it right. To achieve results with social media, you need to determine your goals and how they will be measured, identify available tools and assign people and financial resources to your initiatives.

Setting Goals:

  1. Why do your customers choose you over your competition?
  2. What do you do to you set your company apart from the competition? What is your differentiator?
  3. What will you use social media for (e.g. brand awareness, education, recruiting, sales, fundraising, etc.)? How will you add value for your audience?
  4. What are your goals for social media? What would social media success look like for your company?
  5. Do your social media goals align with your overall company vision, mission and marketing strategy?
  6. Are your goals S.M.A.R.T: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound?

Know Your Audience:

  1. Who is your target audience? Who benefits most from your product or service?
  2. Which social media channels do they use?
  3. What content will inform, entertain, educate and inspire them?
  4. What problems can you solve?

Define Your Brand:

  1. What is your brand voice?
  2. What are your brand guidelines for visuals?

Content Creation:

  1. What is your competition doing right and wrong on social media?
  2. What type of content will you share on each social media channel?
  3. How will you produce and share useful content?

Listen:

  1. What will you listen for? (e.g. your company name, names of executives, keywords related to your business)
  2. What tools will you use to listen? (e.g. Google Alerts, Social Mention, Hoot Suite, Sprout Social, hashtag searches on Twitter and Instagram)

Logistics:

  1. Who will be on your social media team?
  2. How often will you post new content?
  3. What is your social media budget?
  4. What is your plan for a social media crisis, negative comments and poor reviews?

Analytics:

  1. How will you measure social media success and what tools will you need? (e.g. Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics, Iconosquare, LinkedIn Analytics, Pinterest Analytics, Google Analytics, Sprout Social)
  2. How often will you analyze results?

 

Your social media strategy should be in writing, but it is a guideline that will change. As you monitor and measure your results, you will find there are some tactics that don’t work for you and you will discover new ones that you want to try! Give yourself the flexibility to change and adapt quickly without losing focus on your overall goals.

Benefits of Blogging

Blogging, like most other things in life, requires a commitment but, when done right, it can be very beneficial for your business and for you personally.

Benefits for Your Company

  • Website traffic – Blogging will increase the traffic on your website. If you consider your website your virtual storefront, the more visitors you have the better.
  • Credibility – Well-written blog posts can influence your credibility. It is amazing how you can transform from an ordinary individual to a perceived “expert” just by posting informative content.
  • Search engine optimization (SEO) – One of the best ways to boost your SEO is to create fresh content. Integrating a blog on your website keeps your content fresh.
  • Engage your customers – Writing about your organization gives it a real voice that people can relate to because it becomes more personal. It gives customers an opportunity to gain an understanding of your brand and to interact by posting comments.

Personal Benefits

  • Improved writing skills – Most people are not confident in their writing skills. Having the discipline to write on a regular basis will make you a better writer.
  • Increased knowledge – Most of the time, before you write you have to research. So the more time you spend writing, the more time you will spend reading and increasing your knowledge.
  • Become resourceful – The more you research, the more proficient you will be at finding information. As you look for opportunities to learn you will begin to find new resources. Learning might come from typical resources like books or journals but also from conversations with co-workers or friends and everyday experiences.

Blogging is a powerful marketing tool that businesses should consider implementing. The quality of your blog will depend on the strategy behind it so be sure to include blog planning into your overall marketing strategy. With a little bit of planning, you can create a successful blog that will be beneficial to both you and your company.