It’s the age-old social media question: How do I get more followers on Twitter?
The truth is, there is no simple answer.
Some people stumble upon making a post that just happens to go insanely viral and gain a slew of followers that way. Others happen to be somewhere offline at the right time and catch something incredible on camera for their 15 minutes of fame, which drives a large number of people to hit the follow button.
But that’s like hitting the social media lottery. You really can’t plan or schedule a tweet that you can guarantee will go viral.
So, what can you do? Let’s go through some simple tips to grow your following on Twitter.
This seems obvious, right? Tweet. Post content to your account. Contribute to the Twitter community.
People follow accounts because they’re interested in what that user is tweeting. Tweet on a frequent basis, and you’ll see your follower count grow, as there’s more content to grab people’s attention.
Obviously, don’t tweet nonstop garbled nonsense. Provide value, whether that’s entertainment or information. Throw some multimedia into the mix: Share links, embed photos, upload video.
Life happens; we all need breaks and sleep. I’m not saying you have to become a machine firing off tweets every hour on the hour. But if your last tweet was that “Happy New Year” post ringing in 2017, don’t be surprised that you’re not gaining a following in the 2020s.
An active account will see gains to their follower count.
Pay attention to what’s happening
Twitter asks each user — right there everyday at the top of their feed — “What’s happening?”
That’s because Twitter is a platform for current events. You don’t have to be a newsophile or run one of those “BREAKING” accounts that share news outlet links all day. Just pay attention to what other users are talking about and what topics are listed on the platform’s trending topics.
Maybe there’s a way to tie your niche into what the day’s trends are? If you tweet a lot about horror films and the trailer for the latest big scary movie just dropped, that can work in your favor and provide some inspiration about what to tweet.
If you have something of value to add to a conversation that’s trending…add to it!
But don’t spam
Yes, trends can help users find your tweets. But don’t be an asshole about it.
Don’t even think of spamming a trending topic by stuffing those keywords into your completely unrelated tweet. That won’t attract new followers and will probably turn some of your current followers into unfollowers.
The same goes for hashtags. Don’t clutter a hashtag search with your tweets. People use those to follow events or certain topics. (As a side note, you should probably look into whether you’d like to use hashtags at all. They’re quite passé.)
You won’t gain followers with off-topic self-promotion cluttering people’s feeds. In fact, you’ll lose them.
Be aware of when you tweet
There are hardcore social media professionals that analyze their Twitter data and dive into the hour and day of the week in which their content receives the most engagement. You can really crunch the numbers if you’d like.
But you don’t have to do that. Being aware of how society functions doesn’t require you to be a big data person.
If you’re growing a following on the West Coast, it probably doesn’t make sense to fire off your best tweets at 8 a.m. ET. If you’re running an account tweeting out business tips, you probably don’t want your quality material debuting on Labor Day.
Obviously, there are plenty of niches that are evergreen, meaning you can tweet whenever you’d like and find engagement. Just don’t be surprised when those 3 a.m. tweets you’re blasting out on a Sunday night from NYC mostly get replies from a bunch of Australians passing the time at the end of the work day.
Actually set up your account
Just having a Twitter @ handle isn’t enough.
Change your avatar to something unique to you, even if you don’t want to use your own photo. Add a header image while you’re at it.
Also, fill out that bio. No, really, fill out that bio. Include information that will inform people about what they’ll get from this account, what your experience is in.
Are you a football fan? Let people know. Will you be sharing your latest original knitting patterns? You have to put that in your bio! You’d be surprised about how much one’s profile determines whether another user will follow them or not.
A complete profile also helps Twitter accurately place your account within its search results so other users can find you.
Don’t be a bot
There are some great automated accounts on Twitter that share some quality, funny content around the clock.
But, unless you have some creative idea for a themed-account that can be run by a bot, don’t do it. Automating replies or DMs to thank new followers is not that. Be a real person and don’t use bots or automated systems to tweet for you. Interact with people where it’s appropriate so they know you’re a real person.
And if your Twitter handle is the default first name and bunch of numbers Twitter suggests for you, for the love of God, change it. You look like a bot.
We’re not talking about those “follow back” trains where you reciprocate with someone who follows you so you eventually end up with 30,000 followers and 30,000 people you’re following. There’s no value in that for anyone.
Follow accounts that you find interesting, even if they don’t follow you back. Curate your own Twitter feed so you can find the value in what others are tweeting about. You’ll discover interesting content yourself.
From there, you’ll end up interacting with these users by replying to their tweets to discuss what they’re posting. This will help you grow in your niche among fellow members of that Twitter community. You’ll probably end up eventually getting a follow-back too, but this way you’ll have earned it, and your new follower will actually pay attention to what you post in the future.
And last, but not least…
Grow your account organically
Do not buy followers. Just don’t do it.
There are a slew of websites out there where you can drop money and gain thousands of followers in just a few hours. How are all those wonderful Twitter users finding you? They’re not. Many of these websites take advantage of hacked accounts or set up tens of thousands of fake profiles to provide the illusion of being a popular Twitter user.
Ever see a Twitter account with hundreds of thousands of followers, yet each tweet gets no more than one retweet and two likes? It’s because they’re faking it with paid followers. It’s inauthentic, and real people who do find your account can see right through it.
Powered by WPeMatico