Make the Most of Your Social Media Strategy

twitter reachAre you unhappy with your number of followers? Do you sometimes feel like you’re Wile E. Coyote, and Twitter is your Road Runner—always one step ahead of you? There is hope. Yes, the Twitterverse can be big and complex. But with the right know-how and a little time spent on planning each day, you can navigate your way through the network and gain more followers in no time. Here’s our 7-day guide for improving your Twitter reach.

Day 1: Look for Useful Content

If you Tweet it, they will come. People will follow Twitter users who post helpful or engaging things, so one of the best ways to attract a fan base is share things that people are interested in. But, given that there are so many hours of the day, and you can probably only spare a few minutes for researching, how can you find the right kind of content? Google Alerts. An aggregator is a quick and easy way to find just the right resources. With its help, you can Tweet nothing but the freshest content to your followers, without having to drain your time researching.

Day 2: Search for Good Industry Contacts

Over on Social Media Examiner, readers have suggested a range of good sites for finding relevant contacts. There’s WeFollow, for finding influencers, and ManageFlitter, for searching user bios. Of course, there are always the high-profile thought leaders, too. Just because they’re industry rock stars, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to engage them. If you catch their eye, your followers can increase exponentially. Web developer Brad Knutson writes on his blog that he won lots of followers for a client when he Tweeted a question at an industry leader, and the person didn’t know the answer to the question. Their exchange circulated the Twitterverse and won the client a whole new following within the course of a single day.

Day 3: Schedule Tweets at the Optimal Times

According to an infographic by Buddy Media, Tweets posted between the hours of 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. receive 30% more engagement than Tweets posted at other times. This holds true even for Saturdays and Sundays. If you come up with a brilliant, hilarious, ReTweet-worthy thought in the middle of the night, don’t log on to Twitter, unless your target audience is halfway around the world. Write it down and Tweet it during business hours instead.

Day 4: Identify a Twitter Chat

Twitter chats are scheduled Tweet-fests centered one a certain hashtag, led by a moderator, and scheduled to take place at a pre-arranged time. The format of these chats vary; some are pure question-and-answer sessions where participants pose questions to one person, while others are an interview between the moderator and a guest, with the audience allowed to ask questions afterwards. Still, others pose questions to the audience, and here’s where you can really shine. If you share a useful insight during the chat, you may just find yourself with some new followers tuning into your Twitter for more info. For a list of current Twitter chats, check out this resource.

Day 5: Tweet Media

Even though Twitter may not let you show visual or video content quite as easily as Facebook does, posting different media is still a great way to reach people. With Vine videos now upon us, your next viral video might just be a few button presses away. Think of a way to show people your business, and ask a question that will get them talking. For example, you could shoot some footage of fun company goings-on and ask a question like, “What does your office like to do for fun?”

Day 6: Make a List of Possible Hashtags

The Buddy Media infographic reports that Tweets with hashtags receive twice as much engagement as those without. However, only 24% of the 320 companies surveyed included hashtags. Look at Twitter accounts relevant to your industry and see what hashtags they’re using. Brainstorm your own list of hashtags and keep them handy when it comes time to Tweet. Making a list can make Tweeting easier. How? It will prevent those times when you sit at your keyboard, experimenting with different hashtags and trying to make your Tweet fit 100 characters, which the infographic marks as the optimal Tweet length. Another takeaway from Buddy media? Use no more than two hashtags. Three or greater is just overkill and drives down engagement.

Day 7: Sign Up for a Account allows you to create your own personal newspaper by culling from the content on your Twitter, Facebook, and Google+ accounts. Essentially, you’re aggregating the content you find interesting, then creating a customized, digital newspaper out of it. can tweet the link to your paper and include the Twitter handles of the people whose content is included in the paper. This may pique their interest and get them following your account.

You’ll notice that a lot of these tips involve planning, instead of actually using Twitter—i.e. we advise you to “Look for Useful Content” instead of “Tweet Useful Content.” This is to make increasing your Twitter fan base less overwhelming. It’s easy to tell a person to improve their web presence with a WordPress blog. The real challenge, though, comes in learning how to master all of the different WordPress tools. So we’ve divided our advice into seven easy actionable steps that won’t take forever and a day. Spend just a few minutes each day implementing these steps, and your follower numbers will look much better.

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