In the past I’ve talked about the sheer volume of social media platforms that are available these days, and I probably will do again.
For marketers it poses a serious problem.
Should you be using them?
If so, then which ones should you be using?
Or should you be using all of them?
If you’re going to use all of them, you’re going to need some serious resources, and/or time, to be able to run effective campaigns across them.
Not only that, you’ve also got to spend a ton of time growing your following on each of the platforms.
Contrary to popular belief, in my experience, unless you have some serious mainstream media coverage, you’re not going to get a large social media following by simply producing good content.
Before anybody starts showing me examples, I’m sure there are people who this has happened for, but they’re going to be the minority, a significant minority.
For the rest of us normal folk, we’ve got to work at it.
Which begs the question…
Is there any point?
After all, you don’t want to waste your time building a following that you’re never going to be able to use.
Personally, I think this means that you’ve got to ask this question before you go a single step further:
What do you want to achieve by building your following?
This is going to be crucial in determining what social media platform you’re going to use.
After many years of going back and forth between different social media platforms, I finally settled on Twitter as my primary focus.
Which still makes me laugh, because for many years I did not understand the point of Twitter.
Who the heck wants to read a stream of my consciousness!
Quite a lot it turns out 🙂
But more on that in a moment.
Because if you’re not following me on Twitter yet, you should do right now by clicking this link.
At the London Lunch a few weeks ago, I was having a great discussion with a well known marketer.
I’ve been banging on about Twitter for a couple of years, and she asked me if I’d actually made any money from it.
A good question for someone to ask, since we’re all in the business of making money.
And the honest answer is… no, I haven’t.
But my reason for focusing on Twitter wasn’t about making money.
My reason for focusing on Twitter was branding.
I wanted to brand myself.
And, let’s be honest, what better way to brand yourself, than having people follow a stream of your consciousness.
Does it work?
Yes, but it’s slow and there a nine success elements which you need to know.
I’m still comparatively early on my journey. As I write this I have 18,347 followers. So I’m not even near 100k followers, let alone 1 million.
But that’s the goal!
Anyway, back to the nine success elements that you MUST know about Twitter if you want to choose it as your social media platform of choice.
1) It takes a long time to build a following if you’re not going to pay for it. Be prepared for it to go slow, it does speed up, but it’s still slow going.
2) You MUST interact with your followers. The more you interact the more they’ll interact with you.
3) Auto-posting just doesn’t cut it. The Sun newspaper has 1.4 million followers and gets similar interaction levels to me with my 18,347 followers, because all they do is auto-post. You must write your posts manually.
4) Put a pinned tweet at the top of your profile, this should link to your website, sales page, optin form etc. Take time over crafting it, the purpose of pinning it is to get lots of likes and retweets over time. You CANNOT change it, if you want to change it you’re going to need a new pinned tweet, which means getting all those likes and retweets again.
5) Threaded tweets are super-important. They make a massive difference if you want to link off Twitter. When you tweet, click the + symbol on the bottom right and add another one or two tweets to your original. Think of it as a funnel, and push people through the tweets, only the most interested will click the link at the bottom of your final tweet in the thread.
6) Images are an absolute must. Tweets without images get very little engagement unless you have millions of followers.
7) Be personal. The Twitter accounts that are purely business get comparatively very little interaction. Twitter is all about a stream of consciousness because that’s what allows people to see who you really are, let them in and they’ll reward you with engagement. Don’t post memes because someone has told you they work, don’t post anything anybody has told you will work, the only thing that works is posting your own thoughts.
8) The bigger your following, the more you’ll notice that traction starts to happen on it’s own, and guess what… people start clicking on your link and joining your newsletter.
9) Take advantage of various tools, but choose them carefully, the wrong ones will get your account blocked.
From a platform I used to think was pretty bizarre, I’ve come to enjoy using it more and more.
In fact, I generally prefer it to Facebook now, rarely venturing on to Mark Zuckerberg’s beast.
Tomorrow I’m going to share with full members the one tool I’m still using for Twitter, having tried hundreds.
I’m going to share how I’ve used it to build a following, and how I pretty much automate the growth of my Twitter account.
If you’re not yet a full member, here’s the link:
All the best,
The Online Hustle