If a tweet is sent and no one is around to read it, does it make an impact? This isn’t a philosophical question: the answer is resoundingly “no.”
If you’re not part of a community on Twitter, you’re likely not seeing any real engagement with your content. Here are ten tips for building a community that will add value to your Twitter experience.
1. Tweet consistently
This applies to both timing and topic. The more regularly you tweet throughout the week, and the more on-topic you are (whichever topic that may be), the more targeted followers you will attract.
2. Be helpful
Give before you ask. Offer to help someone – whether they have asked a question, need a favor or they are simply new to Twitter – and they will remember you. Do this enough times, and you’ll build a loyal following of folks who know where to turn when they need something.
3. Search for them
Use Twitter’s advanced search or a Twitter directory to search for people that you’d like in your community. You can search by topic, keyword and more to discover who’s tweeting about the things you’re interested in. Then, follow a handful of these accounts each day, and you’ll be surprised by how many follow you back!
4. Leverage existing connections
You probably already have an offline community, especially if you’re tweeting on behalf of a business – so use it! Let your in-store customers, the people you email, and everyone you’re connected to professionally know you tweet by adding your Twitter handle to store signage, your email signature and more.
5. Build a strong brand
Communities flourish where they have a distinct mandate. So if you have a strong brand presence, one that matches your offline or other digital presence, you’ll be more likely to attract and keep followers who are eager to engage with your brand.
6. Know the lingo
Understanding the basics of Twitter is a must when building a community. If you’re unsure of what RT or DM means, you can take a look at Twitter’s glossary.
7. Respond to all @replies
No community member likes to be ignored! Don’t forget to respond, in a timely manner, to everyone who interacts with you on Twitter. This will show your community that you are engaged, and not simply using Twitter to broadcast one-way messages.
8. Start a hashtag chat
Hashtag chats are all the rage these days, with brands, celebrities and experts coming together with their communities to discuss a single topic on Twitter. Chats can be one-off, or they can be scheduled regularly. They are a great way to build a community, as they promote engagement, networking and learning. We have resources for you if you’re looking to start a hashtag chat, or if you want to just dip your toes in first and join an pre-existing chat.
9. Promote others
Even if you are the center of your community, you won’t last long if all you do is self-promote. Try promoting others by retweeting them, sharing their content and introducing them to one another.
10. Network with influencers
Influencers can amplify your message, and get it in front of a large, targeted, engaged audience. Try building relationships with a handful of influencers in your industry to tap into an even larger community.
(Thumbs up image via Shutterstock)