Having a successful and popular Twitter account is much easier than it seems. There is a series of unwritten rules on how to properly engage on each social network, and the 140-character one, even though it is one of the easiest to use, is one that brings the best results when it comes to strengthening your content, whether it acts as a support to your website, or simply to amplify the content that you want to share with your followers. Here are ten tips for growing your Twitter account.
1. Post relevant content for your target audience
It may seem obvious, but as the saying goes, if everyone is your customer, then no one is your customer. The key to success in anything is specializing in a specific field. As with everything, there are exceptions, but one of the best ways to achieve loyal and interested followers is to be a second-hand “content curator” for a specific topic.
Whether you’re an expert at the world of tech, at relationships, or at humor about everyday things, it’s best to focus at least 60% of your tweets on your strongest topic. The public that follows you depends on your habits and your direction, and you are directly responsible for the type of public that ends up following you. Likewise, if you cover too much, and your focal point isn’t well defined, you won’t shine in any environment.
2. Follow those who will help you expand
It doesn’t make sense to follow every user you come across because it doesn’t ensure that you’ll get a response from them. Twitter is an exponential network, and each new follower is a possible new branch of expansion, so you should think if it’s worth following certain people if they’re not going to retweet anything of yours, or if you don’t like their content to begin with.
Following just any official account will probably be of less value than if you follow someone who shares similar interests as you, because the latter will most likely end up retweeting your posts, thus sparking a chain reaction that a one-directional account could never offer you. It’s better to have a modest user that relates closely to you than a big and inaccessible one.
3. Post at specific times
There are strong hours for posting on social networks. Posting first thing in the morning is not the same thing as at midnight, and if you get in the habit of posting your activity at certain times, your content will increase in visibility, which will benefit you in the long run.
Activity studies confirm that there are certain hours of higher traffic. Most activity occurs in the slot between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., and the least amount of activity occurs in the early morning (obviously) and weekends. If you post during those time periods, it will be more likely that, in addition to getting read more, your followers will interact with you as they read the content in the moment and not later on.
Source: Bitly Blog
4. Be consistent
Just as with everything in life, consistency is what gets goals achieved. Just as it is beneficial to tweet at certain hours, it’s important to maintain similar habits when posting over time.
An account that posts 20 times in three days, and then goes silent for three weeks, suggests neglect and opportunism, causing you to lose followers that you gained during the times when you were active, and in the long run the numbers will have stayed the same.
5. Make your profile information clear
Don’t be too ambiguous when you post your description. Your user profile and your avatar are the best tools for getting users interested in you, as if they were your business card. Even though it isn’t necessary, using an image of yourself as your avatar usually produces better results than if you use something else. Likewise, if you specify with detail what you talk about on your account, half the work will be done when looking for potential followers and explaining to them what you offer.
6. Participate in conversations
Anyone who has studied anything related to theories of communication surely knows that a basic element of interaction between the transmitter and the receiver is bidirectionality. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to be a Twitter star for life, posting a lot but not retweeting or interacting with other’s content. This attitude inhibits the possible relationship, and makes you appear unreachable and distant on the social network. Or, just the same, it makes you less interesting.
What you sow, so shall you reap, and others will always be grateful for your interaction. Tit for tat. If I retweet this interesting content today, maybe tomorrow someone will retweet mine, and so on—a chain reaction. Never forget that.
7. Be positive
A lot of marketing experts say that controversy is a very efficient tool for generating interest. To insult and criticize is a popular sport of the masses in today’s age, but it goes without saying that that kind of attitude promotes negativity. Sensationalist journalism, telling someone beforehand that you are going to unfollow them, or slyly mentioning people you don’t follow so they know you’re harshly criticizing them doesn’t put out good vibes, and your followers will pick up on it. Life is unfair and cruel enough as it is, and you don’t have to extrapolate online about your daily life.
8. Balance between following and followers
Doesn’t it make you suspicious when you see a Twitter account that follows thousands of people, but only has a few dozen followers? Well, there isn’t much more to say about that. A Twitter account with that sort of unbalance of contacts indicates the obvious: The aforementioned clearly doesn’t read everyone he follows, and likewise their content doesn’t come off as very interesting which is obvious because of the few amount of followers.
It’s recommended that you proportion of following and followers not vary more than 20%. Likewise, you shouldn’t do the “You follow me, I’ll follow you back” thing because that mindset turns people into numbers, and no one likes to be used as cattle to fatten up one’s Twitter account.
9. Use a program that suits to your needs
Twitter’s official client, both the desktop and smartphone version, has all you need to manage your account. But, there will be a time when it isn’t enough, especially if you manage several account at once, or if you have too many followers.
We have already previously talked about other great clients on our blog, such as Tweetdeck, as well as provided tips on how to better use their features. Also, using Twitter on your smartphone is what brings home the bacon, and the amount of available apps to manage your account is almost bigger than that of those available for desktop.
10. Be yourself
In the end, a social network isn’t anything more than a reflection of who you are, and means of escape for sharing your experiences and anxieties with others at a greater dimension than your everyday routine allows. Even though the inherent privacy and anonymity of the Internet can tempt you to create a false identity, being true and authentic are the best tools for getting people interested in you on the Internet.
It’s not about having a gift for people, or thoroughly analyzing how to make every single one of your posts successful. Just act natural, and use Twitter as you best see fit. Twitter doesn’t interest a lot of people because they don’t know how to work with it. Indeed, Twitter is just a social tool, and it is up to us on how we use it and the benefit we get out of it, whether we use it for fun, or professionally.