How do I increase my social media following?
... asks everyone...literally.....everyone. *face palms*
In this social age of retweets, shares and the potential to literally make a year's salary based on your following (yes, people are actually doing that), we understand the above question is a completely valid one. Not to mention a frustrating one, as building a digital presence (the organic way) doesn't happen overnight—unless you go viral, which means you're actually a unicorn and have much bigger issues. Nonetheless, growing an organic following can be especially important for brands who are looking to build awareness, target their core audience and ultimately, generate leads and sales.
We just love the sound of double taps and cha-chings—how 'bout you?
How to Grow Your Social Media Presence
Regardless of whether you're an individual or a business/brand, with the right recipe, you can successfully grow your numbers to exponential levels.
Check out our top 11 tips listed below!
1 - Post Consistently
The goal here is to remain consistent at whichever frequency works best for you. Some experts say you must post a certain number of times each day to build a successful following. We say, it's trial and error and there is no one-size-fits-all method. However, as long as your posting schedule is consistent, you should be able to grow your following.
2 - Engage, Engage, Engage
Logging on to your accounts, posting, then running like hell will NOT increase your following. Sorry, that method just doesn't cut it in 2017. You have to dedicate time to engage with your core audience in order to grow your following. Ever heard the saying, "you gotta' give a little to get a little?" Well, that's never been more true when it comes to social media. It's a two-way street and believe it or not, your followers—future consumers—want you to meet them halfway.
Be sure to respond or at least "like" all comments, and all answer questions. Doing so will make you more personable rather than just a brand, which will gain your followers' trust and help you get sales.
3 - Launch Contests and Giveaways
One of the easiest and most effective ways to grow your following is to launch contests and giveaways where people are incentivized for engaging with your brand. When all else fails, try this method because let's face it, everybody and their mama loves free stuff. You know it's true.
The key here is to make it easy for followers to participate, so with that being said, try to steer clear of complex instructions, contest rules, etc., or you'll minimize your chance of getting the engagement you desire. We find that a simple, "like and tag a friend" method works best for us. Try it out and see how it works!
4 - Add Value
Provide your followers with knowledgeable, value-worthy content as often as you can. This can feel like a whole lot of work, but your followers will appreciate that you're investing in them and in return, will invest in you. Additionally, providing content that is value-rich will position you as an expert in your field, helping you attract new clients, consumers, etc.
5 - Know Your Core Audience
Before implementing a social media strategy, you have to make sure you're speaking to your target demographic; but to truly accomplish this, you have to know who your audience is.
Where do they shop? What movies/tv series are they watching? Which hashtags are they using/searching? Which profiles are they following? I know this seems a little "stalkerish," but finding out every single thing you can about your audience will be your guideline on how to connect with them. By learning their preferences and behaviors, you'll be able to successfully meet them where they are in the digital space, making your social media marketing a little bit easier.
6 - Transparency is Key
In this digital age, access to a breadth of information is just way too easy to attain, and quite frankly, your followers are way too smart for any foolishness. So don't even think twice about being misleading or telling any half-truths because they will not hesitate to call you out! We've seen it happen too many times to count.
The key here is to be as transparent as possible. Take it from us, your followers will appreciate your honesty at every turn—not to mention, if they think you're keeping it real, they're more likely to trust you and spend with you.
7 - Tell Your Story
So here's the thing, no one wants to be "marketed to" anymore. Period. We, the consumers, like the freedom to make our own choices and don't like to be told how to spend our money. But most importantly, we want to know who you are before we spend our coins with you.
So how does a business manage that? The answer is simple, tell us your story, who you are as a brand, what your core values are, etc., and allow your target audience to connect with you. Remember, it's not always about what you're selling, it's about how you make people feel.
8 - Call-to-Action
A lot of people get discouraged because their posts do not receive the engagement they think it should. There's nothing worse than taking hours to create a piece of content, come up with a fire caption, just to post it and receive less than 11 likes. Like come on, man—is this thing on?!
But what we fail to realize, is that sometimes we have to ask our followers for what we want. When drafting your caption, pose an open-ended question, ask for feedback, run a poll—literally anything to prompt a response. Sometimes they're not engaging because you simply haven't asked them to. Did we just blow your mind or what?!
9 - Content is King
Quality content reigns on social media, and that's like, a fact. It's all about what you're saying, and what value you're adding, because anything else is just fluff and your followers ain't got time for that. Don't worry too much about quantity, as your followers would prefer to see a few high-quality pieces of content than an overload of crap. The higher the quality, resolution, and value, the better your chances of increasing your following.
10 - Use Hashtags
Don't miss the opportunity to use brand-specific and relevant hashtags when posting content, especially on a platform like Instagram. Using mid to high-performing hashtags will increase your visibility and help potential customers find you. Think of hashtags as like the SEO of social media. The more you can hone in on the hashtags your followers or potential customers may be using to find profiles like yours, the more likely you are to be found and followed.
11 - Be Clear In Your Messaging
When developing your social media strategy, really sit down and think about what you're saying to your followers. Does it align with your brand? Is there a strategy or call-to-action behind it? Does it match your brand voice? Does it speak to your core values, culture? If not, trash it.
Simply put, your messaging should be clear and concise across all platforms, because if not, you'll leave your followers confused about who you are—and if they don't know who you are, they probably won't follow you and they certainly won't buy from you.
We hope this helps! Xx