After my 3 days Social Media Course at Singapore Media Academy, I decided to start my own twitter account. With guidance from Belinda Ang (my course instructor, friend & mentor), I grew my twitter followers from 0 to 2,000 within 4 weeks.
It’s not an easy journey. Please be prepared to commit time & effort to achieve the desired follower base. This post is about sharing my personal experience and I have listed them down into 8 summarised points below:
1. Decide Your Interest & Objectives
It is critical that you work out your objectives and have a clear definition of your interests before launching your account proper.
Doing so allow you to focus your communications with the appropriate interest influencers, slowly gain entry into existing interest communities and gradually build your reputation as a dabbler in these particular interests. More importantly, you are likely to commit to your twitter account if you enjoy what you do.
For me, Food, Travel & Social Media were selected as my interests. It is recommended to keep to a maximum of 3 interests which are complementary or broadly related to one another.
2. Face the World Bravely
Next, you will need to select your twitter Identity (ID) that can either be your name, a word or phrase that you can relate to or simply an idiot-proof name that explains what your account is all about.
Always put a clear & friendly facial photo for your avatar. Doing so personalizes your account and allows potential followers to put a face to the twitter user that they are about to follow. Furthermore, looking at your photo assures them that you are real and not a bot.
Please work on a short & sweet Account Bio to introduce yourself to potential followers. It should say who you are and contents that you are likely to tweet about. Be truthful about your location and always include your blog or website url to drive web traffic.
A background for your twitter webpage is optional as twitter feeds are usually accessed on the go via mobile. But it is still good to do up if you have the time.
If you have Blog, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest or your personal website – it will be good to standardize the same ID & avatar photo across all channels for consistent branding.
3. Go beyond Singapore Shores
Search the web for top influencers on your interests, follow them and start interacting with them on a daily basis. They are usually friendly and will eventually invite you to be part of their interest communities. Follow & engage pro-actively in discussions relating to the latest news and updates on these interest.
I came to realize that many Singaporeans tend to just follow local twitter users. Content is king when it comes to followers acquisition. To obtain latest & more coveted first hand information, follow the source instead of waiting at the far receiving end.
Once you are viewed as a valuable source of first hand information, your follower base will naturally increase.
4. Be Sincere & Engage on a Personal Level
As your followers increase, spend time to read their tweets and engage them on a personal level rather than just simply forwarding their tweets. Be sincere and show concern daily with friendly Good Morning tweets etc.
5. Read & Value Add
If you come across interesting tweet links, open them up and assess its contents before retweeting it out to your followers. A retweet is considered a personal endorsement; you will not want to be seen endorsing a lousy content.
Followers will also value your personal opinions on the retweeted content. Remember that a potential follower will judge the quality of your account based on your last 3 tweets. So every tweet counts.
6. Help Promote Others
If you stumble across tweets with great content or blog posts that deserve attention, help to recommend & retweet it to your followers.
Karma works both ways. You will soon find twitter users repaying your generosity and kindness with a recommendation or retweet of your content as well.
7. Create Your Own Content
At the end of the day, twitter users are attracted to useful and relevant contents.
If you are not currently writing a blog, you will need to find alternative contents which will be of value to your followers. This will mean doing web sourcing for interesting articles and scheduling them as content tweets for your account.
Please remember to give the appropriate credit to the information source.
8. Prepare for #followfriday aka #ff
Every Friday, thousands of people on Twitter will be using this phrase to recommend good twitter users to follow.
Adding #followfriday or #ff anywhere in your tweet will land it in the hashtext directory where all twitter users can access to see all #ff recommendations. The presence of “#” is very important so don’t forget it!
Before the big day arrive, prepare your recommendation tweets and organize them based on interest. If your recommendation list gets too long, use a separate tweet to keep it within 140 characters.
Eg TGI #ff! Foodies in SG @misstamchiak @cuisineparadise @missuschewy @ladyironchef @food_blogger @lobsterpaints @thehungrycow
Twitter users mentioned will usually reciprocate with a Retweet, Thank You Tweet or recommend you back on their #ff list. This will increase your account visibility and earn you more followers in the process.
As the world operates on different timezone, #followfriday can start as early as Thursday evening to as late as Saturday morning.
That’s all I have to share for the time being. Please feel free to share feedbacks, comments or other suggestions below. Look forward to hear from you soon.
You may also like to check out my posts on other interesting social media topics here