Have you ever feel the need to get more followers in a social network? Well, most of us have and we cannot excuse for that: it’s human nature to get recognition. Social networks have integrated the relationships and the interactions we have with the technological aspect of our lives, and that’s why we feel the need to use them all day.
But today we are going to focus on Twitter. This social network started as an informative tool but very soon became a social network to share any type of content. As it grew, its very purpose was vanishing to make room for spammers and other users, so it appeared the necessity to improve the tool to make it more relevant, However, people still use it the wrong way. So that’s why we wanted to publish useful recommendations, tools and apps to help you make your experience better.
Getting High quality followers
The next ways to get followers are the ones we choose as high quality, since they are clean and easy ways to obtain followers who would like your content and engage with it, meaning more retweets, mentions and follows. By implementing all of these you’ll see a high impact on your following / followers rate, without affecting your timeline and the quality of your tweets.
Making a giveaway
A giveaway can be done for any reason: because of the anniversary of your blog, because you hit a milestone or just because you’re a great guy. Giveaways consist in selecting prizes (or a prize) and create any kind of contest with it. The sponsors tend to like giveaways because they get exposure to their products and the bloggers win because they have a product to offer. But regardless of the purpose, giveaways can be used in addition to get more visits, get more subscribers or get more followers in social networks. if you’re planning to make a giveaway, remember that a great way to promote it is through social networks, and twitter is probably the quickest one to achieve great results.
Giving freebies in exchange
Freebies in exchange for followers might sound a little bad because people is not subscribing because of a true interest in what you do. Although it is an amazing way to get followers, the downside is that you’ll have to keep giving freebies if you want your followers to be interested. let’s say that with this method you won’t get that much engagement.
Showing who you are
The more information you put to complete your profile gives you a personal halo (although we know it is a person who is behind a Twitter account) obtaining followers by the way. Use your bio field to show a short description of you, add links to redirect followers to sites, profiles or blogs where they can find more information about who you are and what you do. In fact, high quality followers give relevance to a user with a well written and descriptive biography. Most of this people receive a notification through email indicating them who started to follow them, so having a descriptive biography will help you get followers in return. Adding your city is also a good idea if you’re promoting a product or a service which targets is a local community, a town, a city or even a state.
When you create a Twitter account it is required for you to provide a little description about yourself, a link and a photo. Many people don’t do this but those who does tend to have more quality users than those who don’t. This way of achieving followers, as basic as it sounds, is very effective, but it works hand by hand with other ways. You cannot expect that people starts following without tweeting anything.
Including a profile photo
Photos are probably the easiest ways to give a human aspect to your Twitter account. It works great for the first impression a person has on you and it should preferably be a frontal photo. there’s no standard on what you should use, but a cool image, with some creativity like a nice effect or an interesting background is always a good option. There are some other recommendations to follow. For example, you can also put the logo of your company to give it a professional look; regarding to changing your profile picture very often, it could have a negative effect because people tend to associate you or your company with an image, and if you change it regularly, they’ll assume you’re unstable.
On the other hand, According to a test performed on 9 million Twitter profiles by the marketing company HubSpot, accounts with photos tend to have 10 times more followers than those who doesn’t.
Including a link
Adding a link to your Twitter account makes it look very professional and appealing. if you’re the founder of a blog or a website, do not hesitate to promote it on your Twitter profile by putting a link. This part of the extensive study by Dan Zarrrella from HubSpot shows that people with a link in their profiles have an average of 130 followers, while those who doesn’t have an average of 20 followers.
Following the leaders in your sector
Identifying the opinion leaders of your sector and adding them could make them notice you and could gain an important follower. By your side of course, you cannot avoid the fact you need to interact with them. Retweet the posts you find interesting and useful for other followers, mention them when you found something that belongs to them in their websites or blogs. although there is a downside. Let’s be honest: this is a strategy that could take a long time for you to view results. Very few of the important twitters notice individuals unless you get somehow popular in the same field they are. And this is not a matter of arrogance: do you imagine handling one by one every mention, retweet or direct message by yourself having thousands, even millions of followers? You have two options: whether you hire someone who does that or handle it yourself doing noting else but that. However, you can achieve recognition from this users by posting interesting and relevant content on your website and letting them know by a simple mention or hashtag. Once these important twitters notice you, you’ve obtained a powerful ally, and the followers behind them.
Identifying the important twitters will also help you identify the audience you want to reach, saving you time when searching this target audience. It will always be beneficial to give value to users with a higher audience than yours. by doing this, the followers of this users might eventually know you and follow you if they like what they see. another advantage by following relevant users is experience. this people have learned a lot of useful tricks that they use every time, even in subtle ways. the know how to identify hashtags, know the best times for tweeting. know their audiences asking questions and making polls. So, from profile design to tweet content, you can learn what they already know to get quality followers. Some services like Twellow and WeFollow, featured later in this article, work perfectly to find this users.
Following users with your same interests
Users with your same interests will most likely be interested on the content you tweet and follow you. Search for your niche and follow people who tweet content related to your interests. Following irrelevant users or spammers may hurt your reputation, remember anyone can see who you follow an the followers/following ratio: you should maintain a balance bettween them, it does not look good at all if you follow 1000 people and are followed by 50. It does not look good the opposite way either because people might think you are arrogant, so keep an eye on it.
This is something that has worked great with WebDesignShock’s Twitter account. If you tweet links and talk about web design, as we do, then look for people who does the same and whose descriptions tell something related to it. this is not only good to rise the chances a high quality user follows you, but you’ll get valuable information from their tweets.
be consistent with your tweets and with the content you post because if you have managed to attract a follower but after a while you start tweeting irrelevant, personal or misleading content, they may unfollow you, and even less, share your tweets with their followers.
Using real time twitter search
The real time Twitter Search is an interesting tool to help you find quality followers, but this way is related to the last ones on following the leaders in your sector and following people with your same interests. This is because by following them, you get in touch with users interested in the topics they post; since Twitter recommendations focus on relevant and most followed users, it is highly possible some of their followers start following you if you interact with this recommended users.
But be aware that not only those recommended users are important. The very search results show people commenting and posting about the content you’re interested. And is very possible those people end up following you if you engage with their content, mention or retweet them.
Integrating Twitter everywhere
Adding your Twitter profile URL to other social networks, your mail signature, your website, blog or portfolio so all your clients, prospects and colleagues will see it.
Promoting your account
Place a widget on your blog with your last tweets and whenever you can, add your account URL to the articles you wrote inviting people to follow you.
Use your Twitter URL when you comment on somebody else’s blog or website. You can actually replace the URL of your blog for your Twitter URL, so if people liked your comment and they click on your name they’ll be redirected to your Twitter account instead of your website, which will help you get more followers
Optimize your blog for Twitter by putting a visible button for people to follow you. The more visible it is, the more followers you’ll have (remember, visible does not mean bigger.) Optimizing your RSS is also a good idea. If you use WordPress, there’s a great plugin called RSS Footer which allows you to customize the footer of your RSS feed articles. This is a good place to locate a Twitter link to your profile, encouraging people to follow you if they like your content.
As well, if you create content as a guest, writing articles in third party blogs, it is all right if you put at the end a link to your blog and also your Twitter link, giving you double visibility.
Do not spam
If you reach 5 tweets in one minute or share the same link 10 times a day you will lose followers for sure. Share quality content and value the followers you already have.
Interacting with your followers
Do not forget you are on a social network and that the nature of it is to generate conversations; be thankful with the mentions, retweet and comment others’ tweets.
Retweet every interesting thing you read, answer things someone else asks, and comment things people say. This will help you getting noticed and, even if those who you mention or retweet don’t follow you, might mention you back saying thanks, and that gives you visibility to their followers.
Make your account worth following. Interact with others users and always try to help them with any problem they have. Tweet interesting content, like articles, videos or any other thing you think your followers would like to see. Create an original background to help you get noticed, write a real and professional biography and use a real photo.
Another thing is you check the answers of users with more than 1000 followers compared to those with lesser numbers you’ll see that the first group tends to answer more the inquiries of other people. they do respond with more frequency, but it does not mean they use Twitter as a chat.
Don’t talk about yourself
Data obtained by Zarrella is very clear about this. The results have shown that those with more followers do not talk about themselves very often. Will you listen to somebody who just talks about himself? if you’re a publication, share once in a while, links and content from other sources, so you help people to have different perspectives of what you do.
The next infographic shows 5 well investigated ways to get more retweets. This can work as a useful way to measure the engagement of your audience. It basically shows that if you use links, use the expression “Please ReTweet,” if you do not talk about yourself as we said before, if you share news and if you tweet about Twitter, you will for sure obtain more retweets.
Once you’ve set up a bio small bio, what you need to do then is to identify yourself, putting the kind of business you work in, or the field that is your specialty. According to the guys at Hubspot, there are some words that have a greater followers’ ratio: while being an official gives you an average of 200 followers, founders are located around 180, speakers have 170, experts less than 150 and gurus & authors under 100 followers.
Posting relevant and useful content
Share quality content like links, photos, videos and alike. Focusing your tweets in one topic is great, although you can also share occasional opinions. Even if it is a comment on a movie you like or dislike or what you’re doing right now, so you show people a more human face and show other aspect besides the professional, even if it is not related to your audience at all.
Share interesting content and be nice, it’s necessary for you to understand social networks were created for sharing. Every time you find interesting or valuable content, share it with your followers, they’ll cherish it.
Give visibility to your profile
Use the URL of your Twitter when you comment on blogs or websites, on your email signature or when you use another social networks. sync your account with Facebook, LinkedIn or Google plus.
Retweet a lot to get your account noticed. Tweet regularly is vital since it gives you visibility on the general timeline and the possibility to get retweeted more often. Making your account public is actually an obvious thing but it could be interpreted as the first step you need to take to start gaining more followers, and invite the readers of your blog to follow you. If a person visits your blog and the next day does not, you can achieve more engagement through social networks.
The lists of Twitter are ways to group people and expert users in different topics, the fact that many users have included you in lists gives your profile a greater recognition and prestige about those topics you tweet about. use lists to organize people you follow. ask to be added in those which match your specialty and follow users already in them.
There are a lot of list in Twitter which reunite accounts according its topic. you can follow these lists and check their timeline in order to see if there’s someone interesting to add.
you can create lists to chose accounts which provide the best information for your area. People who are sector leaders and even other users tend to post relevant content in every area. Having a list with them in it, you’ll find important information easily.
You can create different “sector lists”, for example, if you check the Twitter accounts of different design experts, you’ll see they classify information in they field, so they use a list for graphic design, photography, web design, etc.
Lists can be used also to segment people you don’t really want to follow. Although it is important to follow people in Twitter so they can follow you, there are times those people’s timelines are not as relevant to you as you want them to be. Sometimes you just want to appear as a follower of people or businesses related to your sector. So it is useful to create a list for those people.
List can be used to for recommending people. people who check your profile can see your lists, and if they liked them, they can start following that list. If you are an expert in social media, for example, you can add your profile to a “social media” list and recommend people to follow that list, that way you’ll get promotion as an expert in social media.
Hashtags (#) are a way to catalog tweets according to topics. if you follow topics of your interest you can identify new accounts related to you. If you use Twitter to get news from the sector your part of, you can follow the respective timeline for every hashtag. that way finding people to follow (and possible followers).
If there’s a trending topic or a relevant event of which you’re part of, find out what is the official hastag and tag every tweet related to it. that way, people interested in that topic will find you and you’ll get followers. Do not use more than two tags per tweet, since it not only occupies space of your tweet, but makes it look unappealing and stuffed.
Using the FF (Follow Friday)
Finding interesting accounts can be easily done by recommending them on Fridays. Follow Fridays are a popular yet not that respected practice among Twitter users. Popular because of its purpose, not respected because of its excessive use. Create relationships with your followers every week, interact with them during the week in order to be remembered and mentioned on Fridays.
The way of implementing this is by using the hashtag #FF and then recommending the profiles you think would be relevant for your followers.
Adding your profile to a directory
We all know getting quality followers for starters is a hard job, but for that reason some Twitter directories were created, so your content reaches audiences in the fields you specify. Here are a lot directories for you to add your username, the category were you want it to appear, and some other features, like the location and the website. Here are the most important Twitter directories you can use.
From the founder of Digg, this one is a very organized and user friendly Twitter user directory. It has featured categories with featured users in every one of them. It not only list categories but organize them according to the most popular ones, the top users and also the top cities using the service. You do not need to login to include your username and to put five categories, and you’ll be listed in no time.
Twellow has millions of accounts linked to the website. User can search by name, location or categories, getting in return the related users, their Twitter stats, and their tweets You create an account and login to include your username or you can login through Facebook.
Just Tweet It
A complete Twitter users and applications directory where you can add your user name to be added by others.
This is kind of a different directory, because instead of being full of users, is full of lists. it has more than 2 million users listed.
Twibs is a Twitter directory which focus mainly in promoting business. there is a wide range of categories, from blogs to large companies. It has a medium audience, but still worthy.
This directory allows users twitting in your same location find you. It has the options to follow and help the users communicate they started following you in a tweet.
This website is one of the most easy to use directories out there. you can just submit your username without the need of registering. Then you can browse by categories to find interesting users to follow.
Hashtags is not a place where you can list you account username. What you can do is searching for any hashtag and the app will give you an estimate of global uses for that hashtag. Also, just below it shows you the Twitter users using the respective hashtag. This is a great way to find people with your same interests.
This site is a geo-directory of blogs, websites, businesses and Twitter accounts. It has a simple interface and it’s only available in the US, Canada, Australia , UK and new Zealand.
Twitter cannot do many things by itself, so a lot of applications have been created to fulfill those holes. Here some of the best apps to help you get followers and clean your accuont from those who are not relevant.
This is a great (and I mean really great) tool which shows you the engagement you have with your tweets. But that’s not the best part because if it was the purpose of the tool, it would be completely useless: the great part comes by the time of twitting, because Timely will analyze the best times of the day to send your tweets and will schedule them automatically to be publish at that specific times. Timing your tweets is by now the best option to maximize engagement, getting more retweets and more followers by the way.
Klout is an extension for Google Chrome, that works by adding a grade before any tweet ever published. It ranks users by the influence they have, and assign a number between 1 and 100.
With this tool you can see which people are following you to follow them back. But it works more as manager for followers and people you follow. you can add and unfollow people from the application. You need to be registered to use it.
This web app allows you to look up for key words in the biography, you need to subscribe to FollowerWonk to be able to follow from the application itself. Once you input a keyword the app will show you a list with data like username, followers, tweets and a score, suggesting better users to follow.
Friend or Follow
It is an application which helps you find followers with accounts similar to yours, so you can follow them. You just need to authorize the app.
This tool is very useful to unfollow inactive accounts, those who share the same content once again and those who do not interact. Twit cleaner analyze your contact list and catalogs them according to their behavior, allowing you to stop following unwanted people.
Medium quality services
We classify some services to get followers as medium quality because you’ll get them in a way that is not usually recommended but they are still relevant followers, or those who will retweet your content and share your profile by mentioning it.
Hummingbird is a desktop application that helps you get more followers easily. it works as an auto-follow service, giving you the possibility to search people with the same interests as you and follow them. if they do not follow you back in a few days, the software will drop those profiles. you have to pay to get the app.
Twollow is another service that, according to itself, its approved by Twitter. it basically works as the last one, where you search for followers using keywords and the application gives you back a list with many users. you can follow and then unfollow them in an automatized way. It is a paid app.
SocialOMPG is a service that allows you to follow twitter users and admin those who don’t, so you can unfollow them. You can also schedule tweets, track keywords, save and use tweet drafts, clean your DM inbox and erase spammers, among other options. It has a free limited version and a paid one.
On low quality followers
Social networks have become a way to express and most importantly, spread ideas faster. but many people tend to fall into the trap of likes and followers. and lets be honest: we all have thought, even once, that an article with a lot of likes is a cool article and a user with many followers is popular. Many still think that, but popularity is (and must) not be measured by the amount of followers one have, but for the quality of the content. we recently post an article featuring some of the best content creators on Google plus. Many of them have very few followers, and that’s not because the content they post is irrelevant, in fact, the reason we added them to the article is because of the amazing content they publish. Do not underestimate candidates to follow because of the amount of followers they have. A good thing to do is to check their timeline first: if the content they post is useful to you and may be useful to others, then that user is a good option. Other relevant characteristics are the frequency of the posts that user shares.
Having a lot of users is not a good idea because they are not listening to what your saying. Auto-gathering services which claim to increase your followers count are a bad idea mainly because they create noise and chaos on your timeline, and perverts the informative purpose of Twitter. Secondly, as said before, users are not listening to you, so if you pretended to use it as a marketing tool, you are losing time.
Lastly, Don’t despair
Time plays an important role here. The apps, tools and recommendations we’ve shared here are very useful and proven ways to obtain followers for your Twitter profile, but they won’t make you popular right away. You need to work hard and interact with others very often to get real recognition. There are other ways to obtain followers. One of them is paying for followers. Services like twitaholic basically charge you to get followers, which is nothing but paying for a relevant position in a relevant place of the page (or advertising yourself if you haven’t noticed.) This way is a useful one, since other Twitter users with the same interests as you get to know what you’re offering. this is no different than advertising your brand or product, and although we haven’t done that and will not do it, it’s a respectful and normal way. very often we will find other pages which sell users like cattle. this way is not recommended since you wont be acquiring quality followers, instead of filling your timeline with garbage.
So the last recommendation is to be patient. unless you create something really amazing or become a rock star, you’ll have to walk the long road we all walk. remember that you’ll get more quality followers by applying these recommendations. What are you waiting for!
Note: feel free to share your advances on getting Twitter users in the comments, you can share screenshots and the link to your Twitter account for us to learn from your advances.