Social media is not going away. While the site may change, from Myspace to Facebook to Instagram, the world has integrated social media into mainstream culture, and it’s here to stay. As a business, it’s vital to utilize the resource that social media presents. Solidifying a brand and growing your online presence is crucial to staying viable in online and in-person markets. However, it’s unlikely that your social media efforts will reap any reward if you don’t have very many media followers. Before you start looking into ways to buy social media followers, be sure you are following these tips on how to get more followers on social media without breaking the bank.
Why Is This Important?
Before we delve into ways to boost your following, it’s important to understand why it’s a good business practice to do so. While your number of social media followers may seem like a superficial concern, it’s quite the opposite. A large number of followers gives you a broader network with which to work. The people who follow you will share content with their friends, who will follow you in turn. Word of mouth has become word of thumbs. Higher social media follower numbers also give you privileges that further legitimize your brand in the eyes of your audience. For example, Instagram gives you a “swipe up” feature in your stories so that you can link website content right where people are swiping. However, you don’t get this feature until you have at least 10,000 followers. Content that’s liked or saved by a large number of people is also more likely to show up on “for you” and “suggested” pages as well.
#1 Integrate Social Media and Website
The first and easiest step in your quest to boost social media followers is making sure that your social media accounts are promoted on all the media outlets that you own, i.e., your website, email list, and blog. This doesn’t cost you money but encourages anyone visiting your website to follow you socially as well. Having a sidebar with the icons of your social media accounts is especially helpful, as it lets users follow you right when they decide that they’re hooked on what you do.
#2 Solidify Your Voice
Assuming you have your brand established (if you don’t, do that now), the next step is to solidify your brand’s voice on social media. Decide how you want your company to interact with customers. Will you have sarcastic and witty banter? Will you be sincere and serious? Though many people may be running your social media accounts, it’s vital that all the media sounds like it’s coming from the same person, and that one voice needs to reflect your brand and business ethics.
#3 Amplify Customer Service
Many members of the younger generations turn to social media for customer service questions and issues, both because it’s more convenient and because their complaints and accolades are seen by all of their friends and not just the customer service rep. Because of this, social media accounts need to focus on helping people. Building kindness between business and followers creates repeat and loyal customers and signals to others that you’re the kind of brand that values their patronage.
#4 Engage With Followers
Use your cohesive brand and voice to engage with the people who follow you. Answer comments and check DMs frequently. Repost and share content you’re tagged in, and comment on group discussions and message boards (when appropriate). This fosters a connection between you and your followers, builds loyalty, and shows that your brand is approachable online. Many users get a thrill out of being recognized by brands and celebrities, and they’ll start to talk you up on their own feeds.
#5 Ignore the Trolls and Avoid the Bots
While the main goal is to get real followers, understand that there are plenty of undesirable accounts on the internet. While bots technically boost social media following, they delegitimize your following a little bit. Other followers see these accounts and know that you’ve probably paid for your followers, and it’s not a good look. On the other hand, trolls are very real people with very real accounts, but their main goal is to provoke or enrage others online. You can identify a troll because they’ll complain abstractly or nonspecifically, only wishing to get a response so they can fight with you. Ignore them, and they’ll go away.
#6 Use Hashtags (Correctly)
Hashtags are a great way to engage with followers who may be interested in what you have to offer but who have never heard of you. Hashtags can be anything, from a generic topic to a very specific name or phrase. Use them sparingly inside your social media copy, or tack as many as you’d like on the end of a post. Many Instagram-successful brands and influencers insert hashtags as their first comment to keep the photo’s caption clear. Before you hit the pound key, however, be sure to do some research. Some words and phrases might mean something you didn’t consider, and showing up on the wrong side of the internet is a mistake that it’s hard to come back from.
#7 Use Automated Posting
Whether you’re a social media manager or a one-person business, a great way to grow a social media following is to use automated posting to manage all your social media accounts in one place. Several sites do this, and they allow you to plan your week’s posts and schedule their release. This allows you to be strategic about posting and gives you time to proofread and double-check your work. Using automation also ensures that your posts go out at peak social media hours, which is a fantastic way to increase traffic and boost your following.
If you’re still wondering how to get more followers without buying them, the condensed answer is to be genuine. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the job or exhausted from online chatter, let Sites by Sara handle your social media marketing. With extensive experience and research in social media practices, Sites by Sara can help enhance your online brand and boost social media followers. Contact us today to get started.