“They only have 15 Twitter followers though…”
Chances are, if you are a brand on Twitter, imagining that the above comment was made about your organization could send shivers down your spine. While many might scoff at its relevance, your follower count is a reflection of your credibility. The more people you have tuning in to your Tweets and listening to what you have to say, the more authority you have. A brand with too few followers is a brand that no one pays attention to on social.
Gaining more Twitter followers is certainly a measurable goal, but who these followers are can carry more meaning than how many there are. Of course, as mentioned in our master guide on how to attract more Twitter followers, you want to concentrate on gaining quality followers, rather than just a large but meaningless number. In building and participating in an engaged Twitter community, you will establish your brand’s account as one of value and organically see your follower count grow.
In our recent webinar—Proven Ways to Get More Twitter Followers—Sandra Vega, marketing manager at Twitter and Grace Franck, digital marketing manager at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, explain how engagement is the number one key when trying to build your Twitter following in the name of both quality and quantity. Here are four key pieces of advice from the webinar about how to focus on engagement as the main method of increasing your Twitter follower count. Watch the webinar on demand to learn more, including suggestions on the kinds of Tweets that will drive interaction best.
Bonus: Download the free strategy guide that reveals how Hootsuite grew our Twitter following to over 8 million users and learn how you can put the tactics to work for your business.
Follow people likely to engage
With over 320 million users, and nine out of 10 who have engaged with or about a business, Twitter is the perfect place for your brand to connect with customers. This kind of engagement is unparalleled, and offers huge potential for growing your following.
While it’s a no-brainer that you’ll need to follow others on Twitter in order to get followers yourself, who you follow makes a huge difference between an engaged and passive community. To find potential followers who will add value to your Twitter presence, Vega suggests you:
- Search for keywords or hashtags relevant to your brand or industry
- Monitor conversations happening around relevant topics
- Follow users engaged and participating actively in this conversation
As a perfect example of these principles, The Solomon R. Guggenheim leveraged the power of relevant hashtags through the #MuseumWeek2015 campaign.
Through following this hashtag, Franck and her team were able to find an already active community and insert their organization into the conversation seamlessly. With this campaign, they saw over 1,500 Retweets and Favorites, and their account was featured on numerous media outlets. Through making social listening a priority and monitoring Twitter conversations, Franck was able to participate in a highly relevant worldwide conversation and organically connect with her target audience.
Create content that drives interaction
While anyone can post a generic inspirational quote on Twitter and hope for some mindless Retweets, to generate deeper connections with your audience you need to truly highlight what is unique about your product or service. The best way to encourage engagement here is to, as Vega stated, “make the most of your assets.”
What makes your organization special? Showcase these qualities in easily shareable and interesting ways. The number one way to do this is through visuals. Vega notes that Tweets with rich media get 313 percent greater engagement, and 52 percent more Retweets—numbers that can’t be scoffed at. With the ability to add GIFs, Vines, or attach up to four photos per Tweet, the possibilities are endless.
While it may be an understatement to say that The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum is a highly visual organization, Franck cleverly utilizes not only the artwork but the architecture and legacy of the building itself. In using the hashtag #FrankLloydWrightFridays, the organization celebrates the architecture of Wright, who considered the Guggenheim one of the most important buildings of his career.
Through highlighting this unique and tremendous asset with her formula for a perfect Tweet (image + hashtag + link), Franck is able to build a consistent social strategy with a dedicated audience who check into the Guggenheim’s Twitter feed on Fridays to join in the conversation around Wright and engage with the organization’s posts.
To make the most of your brand’s assets as an engagement method, Franck suggests that you:
- Listen to what people love most about your brand
- Explore potential storytelling angles about your brand, whether regarding mission, history, culture, or the service you provide
- Aim to develop a consistent strategy around these brand qualities
Now that your engagement and follower levels are naturally growing, it’s a good idea to keep tabs on and measure the impact of your Twitter efforts. As Franck states, “data is power,” so monitoring not only the number of followers you have, but their overall value in contributing to Twitter conversations offers important insight. It’s also recommended to monitor what Tweets are getting the most traction, as you can inform your content strategy based on findings there.
As a colossal example, Vega highlights the finding that 80 percent of Twitter users are accessing their accounts from a mobile device. In recognizing information such as this, you can better plan your future strategies to be optimized for mobile viewing and interaction, which will naturally result in greater engagement.
Franck stands by the principle that you need to “know your audience in order to grow your audience,” and tracking Twitter engagement allows you to do this. Her team tracks every Tweet with a UTM tag which allows them the ability to measure the success of each and every piece of content they post to Twitter. Through tracking methods such as these you can ensure your Tweets are garnering the highest levels of engagement, and in doing so, see your following grow in not only quantity, but quality.
Learn more from Twitter experts
To learn more about ways of increasing your Twitter following, watch the webinar recording below.
Marketing Manager, Twitter
Sandra Vega is a marketing manager at Twitter who helps small and medium-sized businesses in North and South America reach their business goals with Twitter. She is the voice behind @TwitterSmallBiz which shares the latest Twitter tips and resources. She graduated from Smith College with a B.A. in Sociology. Originally from Santa Barbara, CA, she now calls the Bay Area home.
Digital Marketing Manager, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Grace Franck is a Digital Marketing Manager at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York. Through digital storytelling and integrated online initiatives, she has contributed to the growth and expansion of digital marketing and social media over the past four years, extending the museum’s mission to engage both local and global audiences in a conversation about art. Her prior experience includes the Museum of Modern Art and Unilever. She received her degree in Business and Communication from Universidad de San Andrés, Buenos Aires, and Ecole Supérieure de Commerce de Paris.