15 Tips to Get and KEEP More Twitter Followers

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When it comes to Twitter, I don’t think I have met anyone who does not want to get more quality followers. There are some who claim that quality matters over quantity, but honestly – that’s just not true. (And the people who make that claim tend to have a smaller number of followers…just sayin’!)

It’s not that quality doesn’t matter. Far from it!

It’s that quality and quantity aren’t mutually exclusive.

Now – the folks who argue against quantity at all costs do have some valid points. Let me bring a few of them up.

If you are just adding people without a reason, that isn’t going to help. In other words, if they aren’t your ideal prospect, why have them as a follower?  Similarly, if you are buying followers, that is putting you at a huge disadvantage! For starters – that’s against the Twitter terms of service, and the same holds true, if they are not your ideal target market, they aren’t going to care what you share on Twitter.

But honestly – adding lots of Twitter followers who aren’t interested in your product or service is just wasting your time and theirs. If you are new to Twitter, you might even end up skewing your ratio of following to followers in such a way that you are limited from following the people who might be most interested in your products or services.

How to Get – And Keep – More Valuable Twitter Followers

1. Complete your bio

Any time I make a list about how to get more Twitter followers (or more friends on any social media platform), I always start with the bio. I feel like I must sound like a broken record, and that anyone who’s followed me for any length of time thinks I’m repeating old ideas.

Except – there’s still a LOT of people on Twitter with incomplete bios!

Not only does it make it harder for people looking for your product or service to find you, but it just plain looks bad because it looks like you do not care!

Complete your profile with keywords related to your niche and you will quickly notice an uptick in your follower count simply because people can find you.

2. Include a professional profile picture

Very few people I know follow people without a profile picture of themselves. (I would say no one, but there are probably that random one who still will ) But seriously – the vast majority of people you want to follow you on Twitter are not going to follow you if your picture looks like that default “egghead” that Twitter gives you when you first sign up.

Ideally you should use a professional quality photo, and make it the same one you use on all of your profiles. Make it easy for people to know it’s you online.

3. Use your real name as your username if it is available

This is getting harder with the many people on Twitter, but it is worth a try. If your real name isn’t available, try a combination with your middle initial, or add _The_ or TheReal or something similar in front. If you absolutely cannot find a version of your name that still is understandable, try something related to your industry. (@SocialMediaKen or @FitMamaJill are just a couple of examples.)

4. Create a Twitter landing page on your website and link to it from your bio

When you send people to your website from your Twitter profile, a nice touch is to create a landing page just for them. Something along the lines of “Hello, thanks for coming over here from Twitter…” etc. Include this link in your profile so it’s visible in your bio – many people will not click through to your full profile. This is a great way to build your mailing list – include your amazing opt in offer to make it easy for people to subscribe. Remember – make the next step you want people to take crystal clear!

5. Make it easy for people to follow and tweet you

Again – it sounds obvious, right? But you would be surprised how many people don’t make the “Tweet This” and “Follow Me on Twitter” buttons on their websites easy to find! Make sure you have social sharing buttons on every post and page that people might find valuable and want to share. Make sure it’s obvious how to follow and retweet you right from your website.

6. Create content people want to share

Make sure your content is valuable to people and worthy of being shared! This is the number one way to make sure that you actually keep the Twitter followers you have worked hard to attract. If your content is interesting, people will naturally want to share it with their friends, many of whom will follow you as a result.

7. Make your Tweets stand out – be funny, poignant, or otherwise unique

If your Tweets are like everyone else’s, they are just not going to stand out from the rest. There are some inspirational quotes that everyone uses, some articles that everyone shares, etc. Do not be just like everyone else – otherwise your Tweets will be ignored.

8. Keep your Tweets short to make them retweetable

Make it easy to share your Tweets by making them short enough to retweet without having to be heavily edited. You especially do not want the “via @yourusername” to be cut off the retweet – that takes away the value for you!

9. Do not overuse hashtags or @usernames

This is one of the things that causes the biggest loss of followers (this and over promoting, which I will get to in a moment). Actually, this is usually a subtle form of over promoting, and it makes your Tweets much less enjoyable to read. Use no more than 2 hashtags per Tweet, and don’t append a long list of usernames to a single Tweet (especially on the memes like Follow Friday). Most do not follows someone just because they came through on a #FF Tweet. Okay, maybe the bots do.

10. Use good manners – respond to @mentions

By responding to people who have tweeted to or about you, you are showing basic manners of conversation. You would not ignore someone who is talking to you in person so make sure you are not doing this on social media. Twitter really is just a great big ol’ conversation! So make sure you are treating it that way.

11. Do not use too many abbreviations or make it too hard to understand

Do you greet someone by saying “Hi, how R U 2day?” Well, maybe it sounds the same, but you get the point, I hope. Twitter abbreviations make you look less professional. Find a way to be concise and use complete words when at all possible in your Tweets.

12. Share others’ content

It is like the golden rule – treat others the way you want to be treated. If you want others to RT you, take the time to share their content too. Make sure it’s valuable to your own followers, but be as generous in promoting others’ content as you would like them to be with yours.

13. Make your content easy to share

But – make sure you are also producing lots of great quality content of your own. I cannot tell you how many times I have gone to share someone’s content and discovered only retweets of others’ content. Make it easy for people to share your original content.

14. When you share others’ links – include a brief comment why

Do not just RT someone without including a brief comment. This will help your followers know why you think it is worth sharing with them.

15. Do not over promote yourself – use the 80-20 (or 90-10) rule

This might be the best tip of all – make your content valuable and don’t over promote yourself. Some people  go by an 80/20 guideline, others by a 90/10 rule. Either way – promote yourself no more than 20% of the time, and make sure you are providing content that is valuable to your audience at least 80% of the time (and maybe more).

Whew! There’s a lot of great info here, and I am sure you will find several tips to help you gain and keep more quality Twitter followers who are interested in what you have to offer.

What is your favorite way to build your following of quality people on Twitter? Leave a comment below!

Comments

  1. says

    They are all really good tips. #4 stands out the most for me because it isn’t something that I thought to do. But it makes good sense. Thanks for that.

  2. Olumuyiwa Okeowo says

    It has opened the unlimited opportunities available to me through you and Twitter. Tx.

  3. says

    The main thing is if you are sharing content on twitter. You should have targeted audience to retweet your tweet and to share your content. For example if you have twitter followers related to fashion or beauty niche and you are sharing content for vehicles. It will not gonna worth it.

  4. says

    I am a little more lenient when it comes to who I follow on Twitter (as compared to other social media outlets) because I have learned that some folks (mainly those in the publicity and media industries) tend to hide behind other Twitter handles. Also Twitter is SO fast paced, and sometimes when your content is shared, it might be shared to friends of friends who may need your services.

    I definitely agree with your #hashtag comment. Using more than 2 or 3 can render a tweet meaningless!
    Look what Shelley Webb just posted..Are you in Social Media Overwhelm? Of course, you are!My Profile

  5. says

    Thanks to advice like this from you over the past several months since joining the YCD Inner Circle, I am using Twitter more and seeing results. You rock Kim!

  6. says

    Thanks for this lovely post! I say you definitely hit the major points. But one thing I’d like to add is that you just don’t add your profile picture so people will follow you. It’s also important to make a brand of yourself. It’s important that we use the same picture, or at least an image that doesn’t look too different from each other from your other social media accounts. This way, people can easily identify you.

  7. says

    This is simply awesome. This info is really it. I have realised that short tweets, good use of one or two hashtags and or a couple of mentions really creates a wow effect and takes tweets beyond your regular followers thereby attracting more interested followers.
    No. 4 is one I’m just coming across and will get to work on quickly.

    Your info is very valuable for any serious minded person. Truly, content is king.

    Thank you.

  8. says

    Top post Kim, some great and awesome tips here and use them all myself.

    BTW I was just wondering on your gravatar to the reply’s you give to your commenters.
    Just a heads up anyway!

    I am going to be Rehashing my Twitter bio and Design since the new profile came into play!
    I purchased a new short domain recently to go with my blog and added it to bit.ly.

    What I do now is add that to my twitterfeed.com and promote my favorite bloggers inclding
    you! So now when a blogger on my list publishes a new post It post a tweet with title,
    link from my custom short domain awesome hashtag in #SharingAwesome and of course
    I @Mention them

    I find that a great way of promoting others and of course promoting my stuff when I like!
    Anyway loved this post have shared it out!

    – PD
    Look what Phillip Dews just posted..Are you Engaging Effectively?My Profile

  9. says

    Hello! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but after browsing through some of the posts I realized it’s new
    to me. Anyways, I’m definitely pleased I found it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back often!
    Look what benefits of 5-HTP just posted..benefits of 5-HTPMy Profile

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