Use This Surefire Guide To Boost Your Social Media Followers

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By Brooke B. Sellas, {grow} Contributing Columnist

Do social media followers matter? (Hint: they do)

We’re supposed to turn up our noses at vanity metrics, but if you’re a social media marketer working on behalf of a client, you know follower growth is always top of mind.

Nearly all of our clients choose “growing and engaging audiences on social” as a KPI (key performance indicator) to indicate social media success.

The ever-changing social landscape is making it harder and harder to gain growth, so here are four places you can improve to help boost your social media followers.

1. Perfect Your Profiles

The first and most important step is to perfect your organic visibility by filling out your profiles completely. I don’t know how many times I’ve gone to a company’s Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn page only to find missing information.

No matter the platform, there are 5 areas you need to address when filling out your profile:

  1. Your profile picture. Whether it’s a picture of you or the company logo, ensure it meets the size requirements for each site (here are the latest image sizes, by platform) and it’s fuzzy or pixelated. If your picture will be of YOU, use a professional headshot and stay away from cropped images or selfies.
  2. Opt for a blunt bio. “Bringing bespoke business solutions to entrepreneurs everywhere.” Huh? While this statement is short and sweet with alliteration, it doesn’t tell me what this company really does. Forgo the buzzwords and instead try to convey what you do (and for who) in the most concise way possible.
  3. Fill in ALL THE THINGS! Every social platform offers multiple fields … fill them ALL in. I love how LinkedIn shows you your “completeness” status — every site should do this.
    linkedin-all-star-status
  4. Utilize keywords. Include unique keywords about your business in your profiles. If you’re a contractor, for instance, don’t just use keywords like “remodeling” or “interior and exterior painting.” Create a specific keyword phrase that says something like,”interior and exterior house painting in Hunterdon County, NJ.” This covers a few search terms for the service/product, and local search terms like the county and state.
  5. Think local. Continuing on local search, make sure you fill out any places that ask for address/location, pricing, or hours.

2. Figure Out Your Content Cadence

The first post I wrote for {grow} as a contributor was on cadence.

Mark Schaefer’s recent post covers why most content gets seen and shared; the biggest traits of good content are:

  1. Honesty
  2. Congruity
  3. Consistent
  4. Originality

I think consistency is often seen as the easiest trait to cover but it’s really the most neglected.

To help create your own cadence consider the following:

  • Create a content calendar (and stick to it)
  • Know which platforms require more content, like Twitter. CoSchedule used research to come up with the below best practices …
    how-often-to-post-per-day
  • Create a solid media mix — meaning make sure you use a variety of types of posts (pictures, third-party links, text-only posts, videos, questions, etc.)
  • Know what content performs best on which platform and work to create more of that (we use seesaw reporting to help us determine this!)

3. Amplify Your Content

Too many people spend gobs of time creating content, hit publish, and then move on to the next piece. They’re missing a critical step.

You have to promote your own content!

There are automation tools, share buttons, and other “easy button” ways to help you with content distribution.

You can also test:

  • Changing your blog title each time you share it; ask a question, quote the article, use a pity stat, just change it up!
  • Asking questions. For instance, for sharing this post, I could share it by posting the question, “Are you gaining social media followers with these 5 easy tactics?”
  • Adding hashtags (they help with search).
  • Tagging people and leveraging their audience — without being spammy.
  • Using Click To Tweet to create snackable, shareable bites.
  • Referencing your article on other guest posts, during Twitter chats, or in other highly visible places.
  • Repurpose, recycle, and reuse evergreen content that performs well.

I also have 28 amplification and distribution tips in this {grow} post!

4. Be Responsive

You’ve built out the perfect profile. You’ve created and distributed your content. Now you can set it and forget it, right?

WRONG. 

Growing your social media followers doesn’t stop with a shiny profile and content. Put the social in social media by thinking conversation.

Use social media to converse with peers, influencers, and potential customers by:

  • Networking/following others
  • Engaging in conversations where you can add value
  • Thanking those people who share your content
  • Asking questions/giving answers relevant to threads already taking place
  • Giving shout-outs to your cohorts, mentors, customers, etc.
  • Adding commentary to shared or curated content

Social Media Followers Matter

There are a plethora of articles saying followers don’t matter. I disagree (to a point).

Yes, follower counts are considered a vanity metric and should be taken with a grain of salt; you shouldn’t be obsessed with follower counts.

However, follower growth can lead to your brand’s credibility and influence online. And if you nurture your community with these tips, it should continue to grow.

Do you care about social media followers or follower growth on your social media channels? Why or why not? Let me know in the comments section below!

Brooke Ballard for {grow}Brooke B. Sellas is an in-the-trenches digital marketer & CEO at B Squared Media, blossoming blogger, and a purveyor of psychographics. Her mantra is “Think Conversation, Not Campaign” so be sure to give her a shout on Twitter.

 

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