5 Ways to Grow Your Social Media Following

Posted by Murray Sye

on Fri, Jan 10, 2014 @ 07:38 AM

In order to build your social media database, you need to build your following. The rate at which your following grows, whether you're a widely known consumer brand or a small software business, can be most challenging and time-consuming for social media marketers and users. You can solve this challenge by understanding what content is appropriate for your business and who you should be sharing that content with.

by Laura Gilchrist

Simply put, content is the root of attracting new social media followers. The content you post on social media platforms travels well beyond the current followers you have. Just be careful not to confuse growing your social media following with seeing success on social media. Focus on people and not clicks. While gaining a following is critical, having real, human conversations with those followers is just as critical.

In order to grow your social media following, you need to create content targeted to those people. Here are five ways to connect with the human behind the profile.

1) Have some fun

When people are browsing a social network like Facebook, they're often looking for content that will add some entertainment or amusement to their day. Eric Nakagawa, the creator of "I Can Haz Cheezburger," says the goal of his social presence is to simply make people smile for five seconds a day. There's no reason your brand can't do the same when appropriate. Oreo does this very well.



2) Create visual content

Visuals are processed at 60,000 times faster in the brain than text. Think about visuals on every social level. What image are you including in your blog posts or website that will eventually be shown on social? What images are you creating to share on your Facebook page? How are you scripting tweets to tell people you're sharing an image? Invest in ensuring your images are as great as your messages.


3) Educate your audience

Social media users are looking for easy-to-digest content when browsing their feeds. But despite the needed brevity in your social content, users also love retweeting or resharing content that benefits them and their audience – or simply makes them look smart. If they see value in a data point or influencer quote your business posted, they will gladly repost it to share their newly gained expertise to their own networks. That, in turn, will help extend the reach of your content.


4) Encourage employee sharing

Your employees have networks that can help increase your own following. Social media users are following your employees purely because of the content they share, industry they're in, or relation to the user. Send your employees "lazy tweet," pre-crafted tweets that they can simply copy and paste into their own streams. If they're handed the message, they'll be more willing to share, which will result in a more streamlined effort and help new followers discover the original curator of the message: you.

GaggleAMP is another effective way to involve your employees. GaggleAMP is a social marketing platform that lets companies amplify their social media reach by leveraging individual employees (or customers and partners).


5) Interact with followers

Spend time researching who your influencers are, whether they're customers, industry experts, avid fans, or active community members. Then find ways to mention them in order to incorporate their Twitter handle or Facebook Page in your message, giving them a reason to reshare or retweet your content to their following. In this way, influencers spread the word about your brand, helping you earn new followers, and possibly leads and customers. Yahoo!

Stay in touch with your influencers over time. If they are true fans of your product or service, guage when to invlove them further. For example, if you're about to launch a new product, you could reach out before the public announcement to give them the inside scoop for sharing. If you're not sure who your influencers in your following are, try using a tool like HubSpot to pull a list of influencers from your database.


HubSpot's lists tool is a simple way to gather your influencers. Simply create a list with criteria similar to those show above, and a list will populate with all users in your database who match that criteria.

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Flicker Photo Credit: by Laura Gilchrist

Written by Murray Sye

Murray is the CEO and Creative Director with the award-winning
Toronto HubSpot agency partner, WhiteSpace. You can
connect with Murray on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn.

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