Need A Social Media Boost? • Think Tank • Blue Helium Concepts
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Need A Social Media Boost?

Top Insights In Social Media Strategy

As founder of Maximize Your Social, a social media strategy consultancy, Neal Schaffer has helped countless companies become more successful at social media marketing. In addition to being the co-founder of the Social Tools Summit social media conference, Schaffer has spoken at over 200 domestic and international events and is also the author of Maximize Your Social: A One-Stop Guide to Building a Social Media Strategy for Marketing and Business Success.

You have an impressive 137K followers on Twitter. How did you achieve this? What tips can you give small-business owners who want to grow their followers on Twitter?

 

I joined Twitter in 2008. It’s been eight years. It takes time. If we divide 137K followers into eight years, it’s more like 15,000 followers a year, or 1,000 followers a month. And maybe that’s a realistic goal—to try to acquire 1,000 followers a month. I’ve done it in a variety of ways.

What it comes down to is a combination of a few things. First, it comes down to tweeting. You’re in a room of 400 million users. If you’re not tweeting, you’re not going to get found. And it’s not just tweeting. You need to have a hashtag strategy, a keyword strategy, etc.

It also comes down to engaging. There are a lot of different social signals you can send on Twitter. You can follow people, add them to a list, like their tweets, favor their tweets. If you want someone to follow you back, my best advice is to engage with their content.

You can respond when people tweet at you. You should also look at your mentions and direct messages. Another key thing is to follow other people. A lot of people think, well, I’m cool. I’m just going to follow 10 people and get 10,000 followers. If you’re a celebrity, you can do that. But most small-business owners cannot do that. So you definitely want to follow other people. Why wouldn’t you want to have a reciprocal relationship? This gets down to the heart of social networking, to develop a genuinely mutually beneficial relationship.

You can also use Paid Social to accelerate building a following. Sometimes you can get new followers at under a dollar per follower—sometimes as low as 25 cents or less—depending on how much you want to target and how successful your campaign is. But one of the cheapest ways to acquire followers is to actually follow people, because in general between 10 to 50 percent of people you follow will follow you back. If you want to do it organically and have the time, that’s probably the best way to do it.

But don’t just follow people for a follow back. Use it as a mechanism to engage with your target audience. Consistency is key in social media. If you keep doing this on a daily basis, following, say, 25 people every day, that would be 750 people a month. You may not get 1,000 people a month, but what happens is as you get bigger, you attract more new followers.

A lot of people give up after a few hundred or a few thousand followers. I don’t know what the tipping point is. Maybe when you get to 5,000 or 10,000, your organic growth will increase and you’ll get a lot of bots that follow you that you don’t need to follow back. So it’ll help balance out your following and followers ratio. And that would be my best advice for you, to do it organically.

What’s one powerful tactic people can learn by reading Maximize Your Social?

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