Even if we say we don’t care about the number of followers on social media, the fact is we do!
It’s true. People do look at numbers. Any professional digital marketer would know that follower count on social media is no guarantee of the value of that account. However, you would also agree that having more followers is far from insignificant.
Mostly all people look at the follower count before following any particular account. Also, more number of followers suggests larger influence and reach.
So, how do you get more followers on social media? I am sure everyone wants the answer to this million dollar question. Well, while there is no shortcut for getting more followers, there are some essential tips that can help you get down the right path to make sure your efforts do not go in vain. Here, we will look at some essential tips to grow your following on social media.
Understanding the Difference between Informers and Meformers
This is a very interesting research conducted by the Rutgers University.
Meformer– A user is categorized as a meformer if all his social media posts are about his own self.
Informer– A user is categorized as an informer if his posts are relevant and offer valuable information to others.
According to Rutgers, the social media is swarming with 80% meformers and only 20% informers. Now in relation to followers, informers have more than two times the followers of meformers.
Clearly, you need to share content on social media that provides value to other users. Simply posting about yourself will not make other users engage with you.
Apart from this, there are several other strategies that can help in building an authentic social media following. Let’s have a look.
- Make Your Brand Worth Following
People today are looking for value in the brands they follow. If your social media account is flooded with flashy ads and irrelevant content, chances are you won’t get too far in terms of follower count.
A research by Huffington Post points out that Millennials, i.e. young adults born between the early 1980s and mid-90s, are hardly interested in glossy promotions and big promises. Instead, they are looking for honest brands that indulge in genuine interactions. They make for the largest demographic with nearly $200 billion in purchasing power every year.
And these millennials can be a difficult catch.
Therefore, it is imperative to make your content and account worth following by producing content that resonates with goals, interests and desires of the millennials.
- Follow Legitimate Brands, Influencers and Users
In order to be followed, you must be a good follower. Find and follow accounts of real people and businesses that are pertinent to your own business.
In few cases, the people you follow will follow back, increasing your follower count. But most importantly, following good and socially-active accounts will help you reach an essential base of people you should interact with. This will prove to be valuable and beneficial for enhancing your own follower growth in several ways.
There are various tools available that can help you in searching relevant accounts, such as ManageFlitter, Followerwonk, and Audiense, etc. Also, most social media sites give you recommendations for people you may know or the brands you should follow, based on who you already follow. In this regard, Twitter’s algorithm is exceptionally good as it offers quite relevant results.
Some of the best ways to search for good accounts are:
- Look at who popular influencers follow: Check out the popular influencers on your list and see who all they follow. You are most likely to come across some valuable and high-quality profiles.
- Check out Twitter Lists: On Twitter, you can check out the profiles of the people you are following and find out if they have any public lists. These lists are curated groups of Twitter users who share the same area of interest. You can find out well-curated lists and subscribe to them to see tweets from people in the lists.
- Groups and communities: You can join groups, communities or networks on Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. to find out regular valuable updates on various things. Also, these groups can lead you to other good people to follow.
- Have Something to Show and Share
If you want to increase your follower count, there has to be substance in your profile. Your followers will certainly take time to check out your profile before hitting the “Follow” button. They will want to see if you can offer them anything insightful.
Therefore, make sure you have all of the following:
- A comprehensive profile: Try to fill in all the relevant details in your social media profiles. Make sure your bio is intriguing enough to make other follow you. On Twitter, where the bio space is limited, it is best to use keywords that can help other people in finding you. Also, for the cover image, go for a clean, close-up headshot that looks professional.
- A valuable feed: Entice your followers with a valuable feed that offers real content. When users visit your profile, they will most likely check out the number of posts you have shared to determine your activity level. Make sure to share a number of good posts to keep the users engaged.
- Be Authoritative About Who You Are
For a fact, people like following accounts that possess authority. So, don’t be humble in your profile. Identify yourself in the best possible way, just as you would on a resume.
Let’s take an example. There are two small bios.
- Daydreamer, coffee lover and author
- Writer, speaker and the official author of “The Entrepreneur” blog
Which one sounds more appealing? I am sure the second one. It allows you to make an instant decision whether some is worth following.
- Post Useful and Relevant Content
In order to promote yourself and gain more followers, it is significant to ensure that your account is something worth following.
Consequently, try to make your Facebook posts, tweets, or Instagram stories useful and relevant, replete with engaging content. Instead of product-focused content, offer social updates that educate and inform your followers. Here are 3 essential tips to help you out:
- Master the 80/20 rule: Always follow the 80/20 rule. This means that 80% of the content you post on social media should be informational and only 20% should be self-promotional. This will help in building a loyal brand audience who trusts you.
- Post a variety of content: It is crucial to post a huge variety of content on your social media account to keep it interactive, fresh and engaging. From engagement and real-time posts to images, videos, memes, polls and questions, create a feed that offers immense variety.
- Post compelling visual content: Visual content allows much more engagement as compared to text. It allows you to share ideas quickly and more expressively. Also, visual content allows building a deeper bond with your fans. So, make sure to share a lot of visual content to improve your follower count.
- Cross-post your Social Content
It is important to make it easy for people to find your social content. If they cannot find you, they cannot follow you.
One of the best ways to promote your content is by using cross-promotion across several social media channels. For instance, “Buffer” is a great app that allows you to manage your social media accounts in one place. Let’s understand with an example.
Here, you can see Buffer includes all social profiles on the Facebook page. Therefore, if someone engages with you on Facebook, he is more likely to engage with you on YouTube or Instagram as well. Thus, the app is using posts from one social platform to bolster another.
You can use this technique in other ways too. The aim is to leverage the followers you already have on one platform to grow another.
- Start Answering Common Questions
Another effective way of engaging existing followers and acquiring new ones is through answering questing instead of only posting content.
Now, there are several ways to do it. First, you can look for relevant questions on sites such as Quora or Reddit and answer them along with a link back to your social channels or specific content on your website. This way, you are not only answering people’s queries but also promoting your own social media channels.
Similarly, on Facebook, you can leave comments on other’s pages from your own business page to engage with potential followers.
But make sure when you are answering questions on Twitter, do not be rude or inappropriate as it will only dampen your brand image.
- Add Social Sharing Buttons to All Your Content
If you want to promote your social presence in as many places, you should certainly allow your website visitors or email subscribers to share your content within their personal networks with a simple click of the button.
By authorizing your audience to share your content, you will have better chance to reach a wider base of people, who are beyond your direct network of followers. If those people like your content, it is most likely that they will start following you.
Therefore, add social sharing buttons, such as “Share on Facebook”, “Tweet This” on Twitter, etc. to grow organically.
- Track Your Social Traffic
Tracking your social traffic is important in order to improve your follower count. If you know exactly where your followers are coming from, you can definitely improve the count.
There are several tools that you can use for the same. For instance, lets discus Google Analytics.
To begin with, look for the platform that is giving you most traffic. You can find out all social traffic information by going to Acquisitions > Social on your dashboard.
Following that, you can use a tool such as Followerwonk to understand the activities of your followers, including the time when they come online, what categories they fall into, and so on.
Such tools can help you in picking up popular topics for discussion, choosing the appropriate time to post, etc.
Moving on, you can also use tools such as Keyhole to find out popular keywords, accounts and hash tags, trending posts, etc. This can be helpful in knowing what other people in your field are doing.
All the afore-mentioned points are “tips” and not “hacks”. They won’t necessarily blow up your follower count overnight. But they will help you:
- Reach a wider base of people
- Convert more people to your website or content
- Acquire more social shares and authority
Observing these tips will put on you a sure shot foundation for long-term and sustained growth. They will give you a follower list that will surely benefit from you and your business.