Getting Twitter followers is easy. Throw 20 bucks into some sketchy app and you can pick up a few thousand followers faster than you can say Jack Robinson.

just say no

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Getting the right Twitter followers are not easy. Sure, big follower numbers look great, but what are those followers really doing for you? Chances are, outside of killing your engagement, nothing.

bareley get 30 likes

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In my two+ years working in digital marketing and having worked with a number of different businesses, brands, and organizations on Twitter, I have picked up a few tidbits that might also help YOU build your Twitter following, the right way.

Stalk Your Competitors

When searching for people to follow on Twitter, and who is likely to follow back, your competitors could be your best friend, and you could be their homie. Fo’ real. Okay, maybe not homies, but taking advantage of your competitor’s accounts can be a helpful resource. Let’s discuss an example.

Say you are an Orthopaedic surgeon in Northern NJ. As someone who has worked with a handful of clients within this industry, I know that there are many doctors and groups in this category that are active on social media. Rather than just going through Twitter and following those who come up in your “suggestions” or as discussed above using an app to get a thousand fake followers  for a couple bucks, you should go through their followers and see who their fits into your target market and demographic.

Chances are many of their followers, and followings, will fit into your target audience, and if they follow back great, if not, you can always unfollow them after a few months (that is also a good way to maintain a good follower to following ratio. If they are in your target market, they are more likely to engage with your posts in the form of link clicks, retweets, and likes.

Stay Local

Searching for other businesses around you, and not just your competitors, can be helpful as well.

For example, if you are a company located in Montville, NJ, chances are, the people following other businesses in Pine Brook might have some sort of interest in your content or services.

By doing a simple Twitter search of Montville, NJ, and then clicking on Accounts, you can see a bunch of accounts that are related to Montville. The first one that comes up is the Montville Patch, which has 835 followers.

Simple logic tells you that every town in New Jersey has one of these Patch pages, and they are all locally targeted, so chances are that many of the people following this page will actually be from/in/around Montville, NJ, and are more likely to follow your Montville, NJ business than Joe Schmo from Boise, Idaho.

Search Yourself and Show Love to Fans – Be Diligent!

You will not always be @tagged in mentions of your business or brand. Some people are more social media savvy than others, so it’s important to always be searching your name along with key branded terms.

For example, for our client JAG Physical Therapy, I am frequently doing searches for “JAG Physical Therapy”, “#JAGPT”, “#JAGPhysicalTherapy”, and “@DrJAGPT”. There is a reason for each of these search terms – sometimes people check in at JAG via yelp or swarm but do not tag our Twitter account, people use our branded hashtags, and sometimes people tag the JAG President and CEO in Tweets but don’t tag the JAG account.

jag physicalImage via Twitter @MSGNetworks

These are all important engagements that one, we wanted to interact with (RTing, liking, and responding) but also making sure to follow these people as they have already engaged with your brand in some capacity. As previously stated, if these people don’t follow back, you can simply unfollow them in the future.

Advance Search

Twitter Advance Search is a great tool for you to enter even more hyper-local conversations. You can narrow down how Twitter will search your terms in 6 different word categories from “All of these words” to “This exact phrase”. Advance Search is basically taking Tip 3 to the next level, and can prove valuable for your business. Let’s run through a quick example:

Our client, Home Point Financial Corporation, is a mortgage lending company with branches in 12 states. We control some of their Rhode Island branch pages (Centerville and Cranston).

Through Twitter Advance Search, you could do a search of “mortgage” in Cranston, RI, and see what comes up. From there you may find people in Cranston actually tweeting about mortgages, whether they are people simply sharing valuable content that you can share yourself, or are somebody in the area actually looking for mortgage, and from there you have a potential lead.

Twitter Lists

Twitter lists are important for keeping active with your current Twitter audience. Going back to JAG for a moment, I created lists with some of their sport industry partners – athletes, HS sports, Pro sports, and college athletics.

twitter list

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It’s important to be monitoring what your partners are tweeting out on a daily basis in case there are relevant tweets that you can engage with or share to show love to your partners. This can lead to them in the future sharing some of your content, and helping you further build off of their extensive followings.

Have any other helpful tips for building a brand’s Twitter following, the right way? Let me know! Tweet me @harris_baker with your thoughts!

And remember, folks:

in case of fire

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