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Former makeup enthusiast and bookworm. Currently adopting a minimalist lifestyle. Contact me at phylliciarobert@gmail.com for inquiries.
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Sunday, June 28, 2015

How To: Steadily Gain Loyal Followers On Twitter

Hello hello there…

Today I will be sharing with you tips and trick on how to build a solid follower base on Twitter. Now, this is no “get thousands of followers quick and easy” kind of thing. As with anything worth its’ salt, building a loyal audience on Twitter requires time and effort. If you are willing to do the work, then keep on reading.

Before I start, I would like to share with you a little bit about my experience with Twitter.

In 2014, I had 200++ followers and one day on a whim I just decided to try and build the bulk of my Twitter followers. I didn’t have any strategy at all aside from following almost everyone that was recommended to me by Twitter with the hopes that they would follow me back. Sure enough, my followers increased to 500++ in a month 

Then I hit the 2000 mark on the number of people I was following.

You see, Twitter has a policy where a user cannot follow more than 2000 people until they themselves achieve 2000 followers. This is so as to prevent spammers from following thousands and thousands of other users unchecked. Since I couldn’t find a way around that brick wall I grew bored and decided to forget about Twitter.

Between then and now, I noticed that I would get new followers fairly regularly. In fact, I get an average of 5 new followers a week. The weird thing was, my number of followers seemed to have plateau between 590++ and 600++ when I should have achieved about 800 -1000 by now. This month out of sheer curiosity, I did a little research online and found the reason for that.

Turns out now people are pretty obsessed with getting thousands of followers on Twitter and Instagram. Some people use apps and websites while others even resort to buying followers. The majority however would follow random people on Twitter then use sites such as Unfollowers.com to un-follow those who do not follow them back.

There are also those who would un-follow people even if they ARE being followed back. This is so that they would have a higher follower to ‘followee’ ratio. More followers give the impression that they probably have interesting things to say and are worth checking out.

That disheartened me a bit because it’s like lose-lose situation. Even those who ‘help’ each other by following one another randomly are losing out. If you are following for the sake of it and not because you are actually interested in that person’s tweets then nobody is really listening to each other. It’s kind of like having thousands of people in a hall all talking at each other with no one actually bothering to listen. 

So, I asked myself this question: How does one gain large number of followers on Twitter without losing one’s self? Or even better, how do I gain LOYAL followers? I decided to come up with a 'strategy' by doing some research, adding a few ideas of my own and executed it. It’s been 2 weeks and I have since gained almost 300 followers and reduced the number that I am following by about a quarter. 

Here are my tips and tricks on how to gain followers without selling your soul:

1.Establish the Purpose of Your Account
It is really important to take a few minutes and figure out what is the purpose of your Twitter account. Are you just going to post about your day, use it as a tool to drive traffic to your blog or a place to post inspiring quotes,etc.?

This is an important step because it helps to determine your content, the people that would be most beneficial for you to follow and your target audience. In short, it is the ‘lighthouse’ that guides you as you navigate through the waters of Twitter.

2.Set Shot-term and Long-term Goals
The next step is to create short-term and long term goals. This helps to motivate you to do the work required towards achieving them. It also enables you to measure the success of your methods on your own terms in a clear manner.

3. First Impressions Always Counts
A good Twitter profile is essential because it gives a potential follower his/her first impression of you. It makes the difference between that ‘Follow’ button being tapped or not. Create a Twitter profile that reflects you at a glance, make sure to have a photo and fill in the description bar with a summary of YOU.

My profile..

4. Be Active
This is a no brainer. On Twitter, absence does NOT make the heart grow fonder. In fact, you will just be viewed as dead weight. Nobody in their right mind would waste their follow ‘quota’ (which everyone is trying to keep low anyway) on someone who is rarely around to interact.

Also, start as you mean to go on. It is very easy to be overly enthusiastic and be on Twitter 24/7 and then burn out within one week or less. Instead, stick to a frequency that you can consistently maintain. I recommend a minimum of 3 times a day (once in the morning, afternoon and night time). This enables you to respond to any notifications ASAP and have an active presence overall.

5. Add Value To Your Tweets
People go on the Internet for 2 main purposes: to find a solution to their problem(s) or/an to be entertained. In order to get and retain followers, you need to provide content that fulfills one or both of the above criteria while being relevant to the purpose of your Twitter account.

For example if you are using Twitter to drive traffic to your blog, merely posting blog links and follow-me-on-bloglovin’/like-my-facebook-page Tweets is a one-way ticket to Yawnsville. To add value, post interesting articles, jokes, quotes and such that is relevant to the niche of your blog.

6. Network With Others In Your Niche
It’s always a great idea to build network with other Twitter users in your niche. The easiest way to find like-minded users as well as get to know them better is through Twitter chats. 

Usually these chats happen at a set date and time with different individuals hosting them each time. The host would pose a question and participants would answer them. Everyone will be able to see the questions and answers by including the chat hashtag in their tweets. 

By joining these chats, not only would you be meeting people who would be able to relate to you and your interest, you will also be able to learn from each other and be inspired. You might even gain friends for life!

7. Be Friendly and Sincere
Be friendly with other users on Twitter be it the people you follow or your followers. If you like their post then favorite it and re-tweet with a little blurb on why you like it. If they talk about their day, respond if you have something positive to say. Be sincere and be the person that you are offline.

Also, always welcome and thank your new followers. It will make them feel good to know that you took the time out of your day to compose a tweet expressing your appreciation.

Sincere friendliness is a rare thing on Twitter so it does go a long way at catching a person’s attention. Don’t be friendly with a hidden agenda though. Insincerity reeks and people will be able to sense it a mile away.

8. De-clutter Your 'Following' List
De-clutter the list of people you follow. There are a lot of sites that you can use to do this such as Unfollowers.comCrowdfireapp.com and Tweepi.com. It’s really up to you whether you want to un-follow everyone who is not following you back or if you’d like to manually un-follow only those who do not fulfill your specific criteria. 

De-cluttering doesn’t only leave you more room to follow people who are in your niche, it also lessens the bulk of tweets you receive daily, enabling you to concentrate on tweets from people who you'd actually like to interact with.

9. Zone In On Your Target Pool Of Audience
Your content determines your target audience. One way to find your potential audience is through the influential Twitter users in your niche.

Websites such as Unfollowers.com and Crowdfireapp.com has a ‘Copy Follower’ option in them. The thought behind this option is like this: Let’s say you are in business and you’d like to gain followers who are interested in your product. All you have to do is key-in the name of your competitor’s Twitter profile in the search bar of this option. The site would then give you access to their followers with whom you can interact and hopefully drive to your Twitter profile as well.

Using that same idea you can go to the prominent Twitter accounts in your niche and follow/interact their followers and attract them to your Twitter account. Now some people might view this as an underhanded thing to do so it is really up to you whether you want to do this or not.

10. Gain Visibility
Let’s face it, the Twittersphere is an ocean upon ocean of information. Even if you have awesome things to say and share, being someone who is just starting out makes it difficult to get noticed, let alone getting your voice heard. So how do you go about gaining visibility in the Twitteruniverse? The answer is hashtags and mentions.

I highly recommend making a list of local Twitter accounts of brands and products as well as their frequently-used hashtags that are relevant to your niche/field. This is so that whenever opportunities arise and it is appropriate, you can mention a brand’s twitter user name and use the hashtag in your tweet.

Hashtags are a wonderful thing. When you click on a hashtag, you will find all tweets that use that hashtag and see what people are talking about in relevance to it. Most (if not all) companies have a set of hashtags relating to their brand and name which they use to know what people are saying about them. 

In a nutshell, hashtags allows big names to find your tweets and inadvertently, YOU. What’s more, if they like your tweet, they would respond to it by replying or even re-tweeting it to their thousands of followers! Jackpot!

I mentioned Nescafe Malaysia as well as used some of their hashtags, #NESCAFEMoment as well as #BlendandBrew, on Twitter and they replied to me! 

Nescafe Malaysia's Twitter account has 28.1k followers.

 Now the beauty about mentions is that whenever you mention a Twitter user name, that user will be notified about it. The downside is, well-established brands probably have hundreds of mentions each day and they won’t go through each one. So your tweet would probably still blend together with the rest.

This is why it is important to use both hashtags and mentions. Not only will the hashtags enable you to be found, you are also drawing attention to your specific tweet through mentions. It’s kind of like calling a person after sending them an email. It increases the probability of your email being noticed and not lost in the sea of emails of the receiver. Does that make sense? I hope so.

So there you have it, my tips and tricks on how to gain and build a loyal follower base on Twitter without resorting to desperate measures and dirty tactics. I really hope that you give them a try. It might be a bit slower but hey, slow and steady wins the game right?

Also, I would like to apologize if I seem judgemental on those who use er, alternative methods on gaining followers. I am just a big believer in being honest and true to oneself be it online or offline. When you do that, you tend to draw people who have things in common with you. I have met quite a few people on Twitter that I click with and I couldn't be happier. 

What are your tips on gaining Twitter followers? Share your thoughts in the comments section below and don't forget to check out my Twitter. If you like what you see, don't be shy in hitting that 'Follow' button. :)