Growing Your Twitter Following

Advertising is one way to grow your Twitter following, but there are plenty of opportunities available to grow your Twitter following organically, as well. While you'll need to invest some time and be consistent to show solid organic growth, the rewards will be well worth the commitment. This surely isn't going to happen overnight, but Twitter can play a huge role in your social media marketing strategy, and make a major impact on your business, if done right. That said, here are some methods you can implement right now to start growing your Twitter following:

1. Fully complete your Twitter profile: Your profile picture and header image are the first things a customer is going to see when they land on your Twitter profile, so it's imperative both are high resolution (no pixelation whatsoever) and are on point with your brand's style. Twitter recommends a 400x400 pixel profile picture image and a 1500x500 pixel header image. .

Your username cannot be longer than 15 characters and your profile name 20 characters, so make both count. If you weren't able to get the exact username you wanted, at least make sure your profile name aligns well with your company name and will be easy to find. You have 160 characters to enter a short bio to describe your company, and don't forget to enter your location and website. Here's a good example of a fully completed Twitter profile (their industry may not be the most exciting, but their header image sure draws you in!):

2. Create content that is valuable and of interest to your follower base. A common mistake on social media is creating and/or sharing content that interests you versus content that interests your follower base. As a general rule of thumb, if you want to grow your Twitter following, then the content you share needs to be worth following. While it's okay to throw in promotional material here and there, the content you share needs to be something your target audience will find interesting and useful. Keep in mind your followers aren't checking Twitter 24/7, so you need to be consistent in your posting and if the content you're sharing is powerful and engaging, recycle it to increase the chances of it being seen by more of your followers. Social Report can help with this. Include images with the content you're sharing, as according to Twitter, "Tweets with photos get 313% more engagement".

3. Use hashtags wisely. It's easy to get carried away with hashtags, and that unfortunately makes your tweets look like spam to many. Never add more than a few hashtags to your tweets and keep the hashtags short. While it may seem like a good idea to see which hashtags are trending and incorporate them into your tweets, they aren't providing any value if they aren't specific to your industry. You want to narrow your focus when using hashtags so customers who will actually be interested in your brand will be able to find you. As an example, if you're in real estate, using a hashtag such as #openhousetips will reach a more targeted audience than a more generalized hashtag such as #realestate.

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4. Comment on tweets relevant to your industry. Look for tweets, especially those from Twitter users with more followers than you, that are relevant to your industry and will be of interest to your followers and join in on the conversation. Once you respond to the tweet, others will be able to see your response and it's an easy way to pick up new followers, assuming you contributed something to the conversation worth following. Dedicating some time to this every day is a great way to meet your potential followers in the exact spots they're gathering.

5. Don't be afraid to ask for retweets. According to Crazy Egg, "The easiest way to get a retweet is… well, ask for it. Do you know that by adding the phrase “Please Retweet,” you increase the chances of retweet by 160%?" And according to The Next Web, "Spelling out the word “retweet” in your request makes your followers 12 to 23X more likely to re-share your message." Don't get carried away with asking for retweets (ie, don't ask for it on every tweet), but don't be shy about it at the same time. If you are sharing something that has mass appeal to your followers, go ahead, be polite, and ask for the retweet.