The Startup
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The Startup

3 Strategies to Hack Twitter for Your ICO

“It’s better to do one thing well than ten things poorly.”― Heather Hart

Too many young startups spread themselves too thin trying to be on every social platform at once without understanding why they’re there. Consequently, they often fail to maximize their results and never see the benefits that a prominent social presence can have. In an industry driven by up to the minute information, discussion, and company updates, Twitter is undoubtably the place where your ICO needs to be. Yet starting from scratch is never easy. Here are three strategies to grow your company’s account from zero to thousands of loyal and engaged followers.

Strategy #1: Find Your Megaphones

The algorithms behind social media platforms such as Instagram and Facebook are designed to help people connect with their closest friends. Therefore, companies are usually very disappointed as they see their their organic impression shares plummet while being not so gently pushed towards paid advertising by these platforms.

However, Twitter is built with discoverability in mind. Sharing, or “retweeting,” is far more of an integral part of the platform’s culture than any others. When developing a Twitter presence, one of the first things to do is create a list of top 50–100 accounts that are most relevant to your project. These accounts will be act as the foundation for the other strategies listed here. Such accounts fall into two categories:

  1. Current partners or investors that are supporting the project. Most reputable funds in cryptocurrency also have tremendous reach and engagement on social media and can do wonders in terms of marketing their portfolio ventures. Furthermore, if your ICO has landed some early stage partnerships, it is important to properly leverage these as well.
  2. Influencers within your target market that have a high amount of followers, but more importantly, high engagement. If an account has 500k followers, but 1 like per post and no discussion on any of them, you should immediately discard that account. Furthermore, try to be as narrow as possible. If you are a real estate based ICO, an influencer with 100k followers that shills Bitcoin all day is far less valuable than an influencer with 20k followers that is focused on the real estate market with a more sophisticated tone.

How do I find them?

One of my favorite tools for discovery is called ManageFlitter. While the user interface of the product seems to be stuck in the late 1990’s, this is definitely one of those “don’t judge a book by it’s cover” scenarios. One of the best (and free features) is their “Account Search Feature.” This is great for discovering new accounts that are most relevant to you as it allows you to get quite granular, searching by a particular phrase, keyword, bio information, follower counts, ratios, etc. See image below:

Strategy #2: The WhiteList Strategy

There are tons of social media tools that will help you follow/unfollow people. The reason this tactic is so prevalent is because most of the time you are bound to get about 5–16% follow backs. Combined with a good automation tool this may seems like a rinse and repeat method that will rapidly grow your account.

It’s not.

While this may work at first, within just 3 months, it will lead to failure of building any significant engagement. This is because when you begin unfollowing people, about 10–20% of them will then unfollow you. While this may seem like the cost of doing business, it ends up being far more detrimental to your engagement than you may initially think. Since only about 2–10% of your followers will ever engage with your content, you are probably not only losing relevant people, but also stuffing your page with random followers that do not provide any real value. Instead do the following:

  1. When engaging in a follow campaign (whether auto or manual) set your target as tightly as possible. Remember that list of top 50 accounts from step 1? Click on their recent posts to see who is engaging with their content and begin following those people. Not only do you know that they are currently active on Twitter, but they are also the types of people that engage with content they like.
  2. Take the people that like, comment, or retweet your posts and put them in a Twitter List. Make sure this list is private.
  3. Most follow/unfollow tools have an option for “whitelist” option aka people to never unfollow. Activate this function and sync this to your list.
  4. Constantly engage with the people in this list. These will be your most active evangelists. Do not take them for granted.

Strategy #3: Chat Engagement

All social media is about connecting people, yet on Twitter, people don’t just like or comment, but get into conversations (sometimes very heated) as they debate topics they are interested in. Therefore, getting into the right conversation on Twitter can often lead to many retweets, impressions, and followers for your project. This is another place where that initial list from step 1 will come handy. By preselecting influencers with high engagement, you are almost guaranteed to have a never ending supply of topics to choose from without always having to search. Replying to people in the comments using their handles “@______” is a great way to start conversations and get other people involved. The key here is to build relationships, offer value, and have your brand stick out in people’s minds.

Whether you are a young blockchain start up or an established company, it is never too late to start maximizing Twitter and making it a serious part of your marketing arsenal. While most crypto related companies utilize Twitter, very few are able to really turn it into a powerful tool. The tactics above are some I have used to grow accounts to thousands of followers while maintaining a 7–10% engagement rate. For some good examples I urge you to check out companies like Zilliqa, Icon, and WanChain. If you have any questions or want to learn more shoot me message.

This story is published in The Startup, Medium’s largest entrepreneurship publication followed by +383,380 people.

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