How to (Really) Grow Your Twitter Following
7 unconventional ways to make an impact on the bird app
Twitter is the strangest, most beautiful little world I’ve ever been a part of on the Internet.
I’ve met so many incredible writers, content creators, and human beings on the bird app. I’m always intrigued by what other people have to say. There is so much on Twitter that you can easily waste a lazy Sunday scrolling through tweets of breaking news, relatable memes, and funny cat videos.
Everybody has a story to tell. And Twitter is their best outlet for that.
Twitter, to me, is the best place to network and connect with like-minded human beings. There’s no shortage of opportunities for engagement on Twitter.
I love responding back to people snarkily.
I love retweeting copywriting and social media marketing content.
I love commenting on interesting accounts.
I definitely love retweeting and commenting on viral posts in hopes that people can appreciate my genius. (They don’t, but a girl can dream.)
Twitter is a beast. There’s always something entertaining and you get to learn new ideas and concepts you’ve never thought of before.
But growing your Twitter account is not easy.
There’s a lot that goes into it. It requires strategic planning. You need to know when to tweet, like, and comment. Using the right hashtags and following the right audience also make a huge difference. This is because certain communities within Twitter who identify with your brand or content are more likely to interact with your account.
Growing on Twitter definitely takes time, but it’s not time wasted when you know what you’re doing:
1. Use it every day, but don’t live on it.
Twitter moves quickly. If you want to keep everyone’s attention, you have to be consistent with how much you post.
But just because you need to make more of an effort on Twitter compared to other social networks like Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, doesn’t mean your whole life has to revolve around it.
Focus on what your target niche is and engage with people who think like you. Don’t be afraid to jump into conversations in tweets and provide thoughtful commentary and value.
People will follow you if you have something interesting to say. You just have to go out of your way to get onto Twitter every day so that people don’t forget about you.
2. Follow good accounts and relevant users only
Don’t just follow ANYBODY. Grow your community on Twitter by targeting the audience you want to talk to every single day. Find people and accounts who speak on shit that matter and interest you.
You can find users by interest, hashtags, locations, channels, and more. Just set your target and you can find relevant active users to follow.
Don’t follow people because you think you can ride their ass. Follow people because they interest you and because you have something to say and contribute to their conversations.
And most importantly?
Never judge a Twitter user by their follower count.
It doesn’t matter if a Twitter account has 2 followers, or 20,000, or 2,000,000. Focus on the content they share and decide whether they are worth following or not.
Don’t be afraid to follow those that interest you. It’s okay to make the first move! Hopefully, they will follow you back. If they don’t? It’s not the end of the world. You’re not entitled to anything. Life goes on. Perfect.
3. Engage, engage, engage.
Twitter is about relationship building. So ENGAGE. That’s the point of social media anyway (you know, be “social” on social media?). Don’t just post pictures and videos. Share content that is relevant to you and your followers. Retweet others tweets. Comment and start a conversation. Make genuine connections with your followers.
One of my biggest hits on Twitter was when I commented on a viral post about Bingham Young University students saying their favorite swear words (spoiler alert: their favorite swear word is “shoot.”)
You can see the video below with a link to said video on Twitter here:
My ass commented this:
Let’s just say this tweet performed phenomenally. You can see the analytics of that tweet below:
This tweet received over 328,000 impressions. That means over 328,000 people saw this tweet and were affected by it in some way.
When you engage on Twitter, whether it’s on a viral post or with your friends, you’re putting yourself out there and increasing your chances of getting seen. People pay attention to people who aren’t afraid to speak their minds and put themselves out there, like Luke Wiese.
Communication is the key to developing a ration with your followers.
Have a good contact with your followers and interact with them on a regular basis. That will make others keep you in the loop.
On Twitter, people remember which accounts respond to talks.
4. Be real, be consistent, and be patient.
It takes time to build an authentic Twitter account. Being a person of influence takes time, relationship building, content building and promotion, and knowing who your audience is.
Fill your profile out completely. Use your own photo. Add a cover photo. If you have a website, add it. If you have an online portfolio instead of a website, use that. Tweet every single day, even if it’s only once. Retweet and comment on eye-catching content
Be patient with your Twitter growth efforts and continue working at it.
You should ideally forget about wanting to influence people and lose yourself in character building, learning, and sharing. When you stop caring about being an influencer or being “popular” or “relevant” on Twitter, you have a great opportunity to dominate it.
An important rule of thumb to follow when it comes to being real and authentic? Be yourself, but don’t be embarrassing. Not just to yourself but to other people.
Twitter is a powerful tool that can lead to some legal implications. Be polite and sophisticated. (I have a happy medium of that and cussing because I don’t fucking care.) Do not claim something if you don’t have proof. Don’t steal tweets. Don’t confuse your followers.
Either way, don’t be afraid to be opinionated. Be yourself. If something is on your mind, tweet it. Try to be as objective, honest, and transparent as possible. Don’t tweet with any hidden agendas.
If you’re trying to act like something you’re not, people will see right through your bullshit. If you’re trying to be something that you’re not, people will notice. Some are even brave enough to call you out on it.
Follow the standard rules of Twitter and you’ll be fine.
5. Being an interesting human is harder than you think. But use that to your advantage.
Don’t be that person that takes “WhAt ArE yOu DoInG?” literally.
Nobody cares that you finally took a shit after four days or that you’re having a salad because you’re #healthyaf. Nobody cares about what you post unless what you have to say helps them with a problem they have.
It’s hard to be interesting! I don’t think I’m a very interesting human being if I’m being transparent. I spend my day working my day job, go to yoga, and spend my evenings working on homework, interacting on Medium, spending time with my two cats, or spending time with my loved ones.
I lead a very quiet life, and a lot of the times I don’t always have something to say, especially on Twitter.
But when I do have something to say, I want it to make an impact on anybody who reads my content.
To be interesting on Twitter, you need to know how some things work. You have to carefully curate content. You’ll need to understand the psychology of social sharing. You’ll definitely need to know what works for you to create killer content that inspires, engages, and converts.
You can’t force influence. Influence builds around people that are providing something valuable or entertaining. This is called authenticity.
You can’t pretend to be interesting. But you can be yourself.
6. Understand what you’re using Twitter for.
If your primary goal is to be an influencer or to monetize your account, you’re probably going to fail.
It’s totally okay to have use Twitter if those are your goals, but your goals need to be SMART: Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely.
Talk about things you care about, talk to the people that talk to you, and share relevant content with proper attribution.
To make communication and networking easier, use Twitter lists.
7. Be generous.
If you really want to make an impact on Twitter, do what you feel is right in helping people.
Over time, if you have purposeful things to say, you will be seen as a thought leader. People will take you seriously. People will listen to you.
Run contests, giveaways, or other creative engagement boosters. Always respond to comments, shares, and inquiries.
Be like Gary Vaynerchuk when it comes to giving away valuable content for free: “By giving away great content for free, you’re building up a base of fans and consumers who know that, not only are you good for your word, you also know your shit.”
Give tips and free advice. Write long-form, evergreen blog content that solve problems. Create interesting videos that answer questions. Design infographics that tell stories. Share informative links to articles and blog posts you found interesting.
By focusing on what you are giving, you’re shifting your focus away from yourself.
A “successful” Twitter account is anything that you want it to be.
And utilizing these 7 unconventional ways will grow your Twitter following:
- Use it every day, but don’t live on it.
- Follow good accounts and relevant users only.
- Engage, engage, engage.
- Be real, be consistent, and be patient.
- Being an interesting human being is harder than you think. But use that to your advantage.
- Understand what you’re using Twitter for.
- Be generous.
An account may seem successful if they have a lot of followers, but that doesn’t mean those followers are communicative and engaging. A good account will have a relevant following so that their brand or content can be spread further through retweets, likes, and comments.
Remember: people will follow you if you put out content that is interesting and valuable to them.
What are some of your favorite growth hacks for Twitter? Let me know in the comments!