Columnists Ann Glynn Tips and Tricks to find and keep Followers on Twitter

Tips and Tricks to find and keep Followers on Twitter

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This month we’ll discuss how to find & keep Followers on Twitter, and what importance “FollowFriday” plays on Twitter.

A little while back I received a lovely e-mail from Roslyn Zelenka of RainForest Design, who has been reading the Twitter articles and suggested that in my next column, it would be helpful to her if I would write about how to find followers on Twitter.

As a point of reference for Roslyn, I visited the Rainforest Design website (http://Rainforestdesign.com) so I could learn a little bit more about the company and use them as a case study for this article.

Rainforest Design markets their handmade cameo products as: unique, inspired by the flora and fauna of the Tropical Rainforest. The cameos are carved from the Queen’s Helmet shell (Cassis madagascariensis spinella) found in the waters of the Caribbean, also known as “Sardonyx”.

Then I went to their Twitter site (Cheers to Roslyn - they actually had one set up before they e-mailed me!) and looked at their Twitter feed to check out the overall quality of the feed.

And I have to say, you guys are not doing too bad of a job for yourselves.  Could you maximize your presence if you hired a social media expert to manage it for you?  Certainly you could, and I’m sure that’s something you want to consider in the future if your budget allows.  But overall, your tweeting is current, relevant to your product, interactive with other tweeters and enjoyable to read.  Great Job!

Now to answer Roslyn’s question, which was how to find followers on Twitter.

Finding followers for a specialty product such as hand carved cameos is going to be different than finding followers for a more generic category such as jewelry.

I would start finding followers by doing a search on Twitter for “Cameos,” “Cameo,” “Cameo Jewelry” and anything that might be closely related to that type of product.  In this case, I can save them the work, because I did the searches for them and came up with a big, fat, zero.  So finding other followers under the category of “Cameo” on Twitter is not an option for RainForest Designs.

The next step would be to reach out to their existing followers, the ones they are already interacting with.   This is where “FollowFriday” comes in handy.  “FollowFriday,” or “#FF” as it is often referred to on Twitter is a great concept and used to recommend Twitter users to each other.  Think of it as a personal recommendation or introduction, but on a much larger scale.

A recent Follow Friday “Tweet” from our @gjbpartners account looked like this:

@geekgirlworld Thanks for the #FF mention. May your Valentines Day weekend be filled with lots of love and happiness

With this tweet, we were thanking our Twitter follower @geekgirlworld, who had given us a Follow Friday mention.  It’s important to acknowledge a Follow Friday mention because the person mentioning you on Follow Friday is recommending that their followers become followers of your “Tweets”, therefore, you do want to make sure to catch that as soon as possible and thank them for it.

A little appreciation goes a long way in the world of Social Networking.

Another way to grow the Twitter follower base for RainForest Design would be to send out an e-mail to the current RainForest Design customer base announcing their presence on Twitter and invite their customers to follow them on Twitter.

And because RainForest Design exhibits at trade shows, they also have the option of collecting Twitter user names right on the trade show floor and following new Twitter users instantly.  This gives them a huge advantage and creates a lot of good will as they are interacting with potential clients in the course of the sales process.

Okay, Roslyn, I hope I’ve given you some ideas on how to find some followers on Twitter! Now that you’re working on finding them, let’s take a look at what it takes to keep them.

#1) Make sure your Tweets are relevant to your products and/or services and keep them professional. This doesn’t mean you can’t interact on a personal basis with your followers, but it’s not advisable to discuss or share your personal information on a business account.

#2) Keep your Twitter account current. Post on a frequent (at least once per day) basis, with information that is interesting and relevant to your account.

#3) Interact, Interact, Interact! Keep in mind this is Social Networking, with an emphasis on the word, Social.  That means when your followers communicate with you directly, unless it is a generic message, you should always respond.  I know it isn’t easy, believe me, because we are getting close to 16,000 followers on our @gjbpartners Twitter account and it’s hard for us to keep up with the communications we receive every day.  However, we do keep the lines of communication open, and we do quickly establish e-mail contact with those Twitter users who are seriously looking for information from us for our services.

#4) Avoid controversial topics. Save your personal thoughts on things that might turn off a potential customer for your personal Twitter account.  Keep your corporate Twitter account focused on business.  The only exception to this rule would be if you have built your business selling a controversial product.  Then, feel free to promote the product, along with your thoughts, because obviously your audience is buying the product because they agree with your thoughts!

#5) Use your Twitter feed as a smart and friendly marketing tool. This means you don’t want to put out 10 “sales-related” tweets in 1 day to your Twitter base and flood them with sales pitches.  Use Twitter to inform them with your knowledge and expertise, and every once in a while, delight them with your tremendous sales and values!

In closing I’d like to say I did get a chance to meet some of you at the Atlanta Jewelry Show.  It was great to put a face to the names on some of the e-mails I have been receiving and be able to answer some of your questions in person.  I’d also like to let you know we will be out in Vegas for the JCK Show, so if you’ll be attending that show and would like to schedule some time with us, just to sit down and chat, we’d love to take some time to meet you face to face and answer any questions you might have, too!

Feel free to call me at 504-615-1191, or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it and let me know if there is a particular day and time that might fit with your schedule and we’ll make sure to meet with you while we’re there.

And if Vegas isn’t in your plans then you can always call me at the number above or e-mail me with any questions, comments or concerns you might have about using Twitter, or about structuring Twitter to support all the aspects of your business model.

 
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