Are You Following Everyone?

The more people you follow on social media, the more people follow you back, right?

Mathematically, it may be right.

From a marketing perspective, wrong.

Even if everyone you followed did follow you back, that doesn't mean they are the right people to follow.

A marketing expert on Twitter recently tweeted "don't make it a goal to appeal to everyone online." Great advice! It's more effective to appeal to those who are truly interested in your topic.

A couple hours later, though, they tweeted "follow random people . . . there's a chance they may follow you back . . . you may sell them something later".

I disagree. Don't just follow anybody hoping they'll follow back. Even if they do, they'll probably unfollow you when they realize your tweets aren't relevant to them after all.

And the goal of following people on social media should never be to "sell them something later". The goal is to Be Social and Get Noticed. If your followers get real value from your messages, they'll know how to find your book, product or services to buy.

That's why we are very selective about who we follow on our client's behalf. We look for people to follow who show an interest in our client's topics. We do this in two main ways:

  1. We review the bio/description to see if they have an interest in that topic.
  2. We review their tweets to see if they are tweeting about that topic and using related hashtags.

It's much better to have fewer, but relevant and engaged followers. We help our clients with engagement by:

  • Checking notifications to see who is engaging with and messaging a client, and responding as needed
  • Retweeting relevant content from Twitter lists we've helped create for a client
  • Sending thank you tweets to selected followers who retweet a client's tweets

Don't follow everyone, or just anyone - only those who want to follow you! Want to know how we can help with that? Just ask.

Focus on Interacting With Your Followers

The recent changes on Facebook affecting Pages mean that social media managers like myself need to be sure our clients focus more on interacting with people.

Facebook started out as a place to share with friends and family—a place to interact with people. That's what these changes are all about. Focusing on that interaction. In time, Facebook became a place for businesses as well. Businesses all jumped on.

This change reinforces why it's so important not to rely on social media platforms as your main marketing tools. Any of these social media platforms can change and we have to change with them or stop using them. It's your website and blog and mailing list that you can control and those should be the foundation of your marketing.
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3 Ways to Expand Your Twitter Network

Twitter is still a major part of my social media marketing efforts. More traffic comes to my client's websites from Twitter than anywhere else. It's a great place to engage with others, start conversations, and have your content shared by your connections.

How can you expand your Twitter network so you have more connections to engage with and share your content?

  1. Mentions. Using the @ symbol to tag someone else and talk about what they are doing. When you share your connections' valuable and relevant content, they will reciprocate. Their followers see that you have valuable content and may follow you.
  2. Hashtags. Use hashtags to find profiles interested in the same topics you are interested in. This is particularly helpful if you're attending an online event where everyone is using the same hashtag to tweet about the event. As an example, each time the Nonfiction Writers Conference has an online conference, they use the hashtag #NFWC. Find other people using the same hashtag and connect with them.
  3. Lists. Create Twitter lists. Lists are great tools for finding content to share within a certain topic, and to find other people interested in the same topic. When I'm notified that I've been added to someone else's list, I then see who else is on that list and follow them as appropriate.

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