I am very fortunate and grateful to receive emails every day from readers and blog fans asking me all types of questions which vary in nature. Some are personal, asking for advice regarding a problem or situation, others are compliments (which make me feel good knowing that what I do is appreciated and liked) and some are more technical.
I’ve already given advice to new and upcoming bloggers and also explained how to get more blog post shares which was well received.
Just recently a few persons contacted me and asked me the same question: How to increase followers on my Social Media Accounts.
Instead of sending an individual message to each person, I thought this would be a great post idea that many more people would be interested in and likely benefit from.
Now I may not be a blogger with millions of followers but I’ve learned quite a few things in the past four years that I have been blogging. The road has not always been easy, a lot of trial and error, but so far so good…I think!
What I am about to share with you is from my personal experience. It is very different from person to person but I believe it is valuable information!
Here are my Top 10 tips on how to get more followers:
Again this is not something new and you may have read or seen it in many sites. Producing Quality Content will get the attention of a lot of people. Now you don’t have to write in order to win an award, appear in an online magazine or top travel site, if you are then well good for you!
I have tried many different types of writing styles through the years. Some have worked while others not so much. However I always put my own voice and I am incorporating more my sense of humor into it.
I’ve written very short posts around 250 words with photos all the way to around nearly 3000 word posts such as my Zip lining adventure in Costa Rica a few weeks ago. You may or may not know this but I am a writer and can write until my fingers hurt. Well that is the creative side that takes over :) Therefore I’ve had to limit myself not to be long-winded because as you know attention span on the internet is really short.
As long as you have fun writing for your readers, entertain and educate them, that is all that truly matters. Some people write first for the search engines (SEO which is a whole other topic) in order to appear in the top Google results. For me it means that if it flows, then it’s just fine.
As you know I am a photographer, so I add as many photos as I can to accompany the text and sometimes I think I include quite a lot which can make me think if I should add watermarks or just leave them as they are.
Overall, I just say write from the heart and do it because you have fun and are passionate about your subject. If not, people will know and notice it.
You can start working more on that. You will notice that your readership will start increasing.
- Be yourself, everyone else is taken
That is another true statement! Don’t try to imitate someone else; you are special, unique, one of a kind. Incorporate that into your writing, social interactions and just be you.
It takes a lot of energy to imitate another person and frankly, a waste of time and some will take that into account.
Be real, honest, reliable and trustworthy. That alone will speak volumes for you!
- Add personality to your updates
I know that you have to keep your accounts “clean” and be well-behaved because you never know who might be reading your updates.
Adding personality to your updates has a lot to do with what I said above in point number 2.
You can almost imagine what it would be like to meet you in person. At least I speak my mind and WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get). I do add humor and give my two cents except that you don’t hear my laughter.
People will be drawn to you and will remember you. Trust me on that one. I had been speaking with a few people on a regular basis and I had the wonderful opportunity to meet some of those individuals in person in Toronto during TBEX! It was better than I ever imagined.
Just be you! Being different is great :)
- Always be honest, people have instincts and they will pick up on that
Honesty is the best policy correct? It applies both in real life and online. We have a 6th sense and we know who is honest, has good intentions, manners and who is not after something they want or need.
There have been some people only talking to me in order to get information or used me literally. Some have contacted me only when it’s convenient for them or leave thoughtless comments so that I notice them. Like seriously?
Fortunately I have been wise enough to detect that and distanced myself from them. It has to be a two-way street. If not, just move on!
- Never compare yourself with others
This is something that I find truly important as you start in the community. It is very easy to be overwhelmed or get discouraged very easily because you are at the bottom right where we all started!
Some may think: “How in the world am I going to get to where X is?” or “how can I get there faster? Is there a shortcut?”
Well let me tell you that there is no magic recipe for that…from what I know.
One thing I can advise you to do is simply to be PATIENT! As the old adage goes: “Time makes things happen” and trust me it really does.
Plan your week, month and year in advance if you can, stick to it and work every single day because if you’re in it, you have to dedicate a lot more time than you thought you would. Remember why you started? Well, this is a true passion which will be the fuel necessary to propel you forward.
Sometimes you may think you are sacrificing quite a few important things but in the long run it will all be worthwhile and very necessary.
- Don’t stress about numbers
This is a biggie and most important aspect of blogging don’t you agree?
Numbers is what most people are after because obviously they do speak loud and clear but they do not make or break you.
Both of the persons who wrote me (and I thank them for inspiring me to write this) were asking precisely how I managed to get such a large number of followers on Twitter.
Now let me tell you the story behind it (and bear with me). Back in 2009, when I started being more involved in Social Media, a group of female entrepreneurs, Women 2.0, kept talking about how great it was and we were all invited to follow each other. Back then I had been using Facebook because my old classmates, friends were looking for me, did find me and pulled me in. So I decided to join a few professional groups and they raved about Twitter. So I joined in and didn’t even know how it worked. I started following those brilliant minds and from then on, it just kept growing! Obviously I changed to my love, my passion which is travel and as they say the rest is history!
Now my Facebook travel page does not have the same amount of followers as Twitter which is ok, I do not force anyone to like the page or continuously have pop ups on my blog to drive them nuts! All is fine with me. I’d rather have a small group and know those who are genuinely interested in what I do and share!
The same goes for Instagram or all the other social media accounts. I am very grateful and truly happy that they are always on the rise but I really do not stress about it. Carpe Diem. I simply let things run their natural course!
This leads me to my next point.
This is something that I find appalling and disturbing. I discovered earlier this year that some people (and I will not name names) have unbelievable numbers and mind you we started at almost the same time.
Having 20 000 followers on Instagram while they find time to like my photos? Hum, how is that possible? How about paying people to view your blog every month so that the numbers are enough to impress companies or PR or Tourism Boards? Oh my gee!
What about Facebook likes that I see are mostly from the same country? It sure gives you something to think about right?
I just don’t approve of any of these but if those people think it’s fine, no harm done, well ok.
Having an engaged audience, whom you know (like their passions, dreams, name of their family members, birthdays, where they live, what kind of coffee they like, where they are going next and asking them how they are of if they need help) means more to me than anything else.
Knowing that if I created a difference, gave them a piece of advice or if I inspired, educated or entertained them by making them laugh is just priceless…Really.
- Share other people’s content
Sharing other people’s content because you really like what they do, write and the way they put it is the best way to build relationships online.
I don’t know if you remember but I wrote about my experience with Triberr and I invite you to read it again if you haven’t.
Being forced to share something is not ideal and frankly it is exhausting.
I made a list of the people I regularly read and share their latest post or if something catches my eye and believe it has a lot of value that you may like, then by all means I will distribute it without anyone twisting my arm or telling me I will be asked to leave a group if I don’t (Triberr once again)
Also I don’t like it when people retweet if you mention them. Serial retweeters should be banned, simple. It’s like if I write a message and I re tweet it or share it again? What’s the point?
If two persons support each other it’s great to continue, however some people are only one-sided and never share any of your posts. I suggest you to stop and give others a chance. Those are my two cents.
- Always respond to your readers, good or not
It goes without saying that your readers are the blog or site’s lifeline, the reason why you do what you do.
Answer them whether it is by replying to their tweet, comment, email, whichever way, simply do it.
They take time of their schedule to come visit and read what you’ve got to offer and the very least they deserve is a response.
As of lately I’m getting a lot of automatic responses from some of the bloggers & writers I’ve been following for years and some never respond which makes me feel like a number and unimportant. It’s very sad that it has become very impersonal and robotic.
Great for them that they are now superstars in their own right but you know humility goes a LONG way.
Ah I’m forgetting my critics or haters.
Yes, believe it or not, the more you grow the more some confused or lost fans, as I call them, come out of nowhere and try to put you down with their cruel words or remarks. Oh I have already a couple of negative persons contact me or sent comments directly and trust me it did hurt at first and wonder what I had done or said to them in the first place!
One travel blogger was so arrogant and made me feel like I didn’t even belong to be in the same room with her, wow. That was quite shocking but its OK; I don’t care if we are not in the same social and economic circles.
Life is a boomerang and whatever you give out will always come back 10 times.
My advice is simple; never forget who was there from the beginning and who believed in you. ALWAYS be kind, nice and helpful!
- Be grateful and always say thank you
As I just said above, remember those persons who were there to support you right from the very beginning, through the good days and others not so good!
I can personally attest that there are still many awesome people who will be looking out for you, help you when you need them and even become some of your best friends in real life (hello Marian a.k.a @travelshopgirl!) They are like unexpected but very welcome blessings :)
It may feel as if everyone is fiercely competing against each other and in reality it is. One will do better, have more, get more opportunities while you are going at a snail pace and may want to throw in the towel.
Well, I am here to tell you what I’ve learned. The only person you have to compete against is you!
We are always evolving and with time you will see that you are the one who decides to change, improve, become disciplined and just be a better version of yourself!
Oh how things change and quite honestly, I prefer what I do now than when I started back in 2011.
I forgot to tell you to always keep learning. Things change incredibly fast and one must stay up to date with all that is happening in the technological world and you know it.
There lots of amazing sites that I’ve subscribed to like
Social Media Examiner
and so many others. Attend as many free webinars online as you can, download free PDFs loaded with tons of useful and priceless information. There are endless resources and best of all? They are absolutely FREE, so take full advantage of that.
I am already excited and very much looking forward to the next phase in my life and professional career!
I hope you enjoyed reading my Top 10 Tips on Increasing Followers!
As I leave you I say…
Until next time!
Tashi Delek, All the best,
Do you agree with any of the points?
Did I miss something or what else should I add?
Let me know in the comments :)