If you are a celebrity and already have thousands of followers–you won’t need this.
But if you are a regular person trying to get your message through to as many people as possible, then read on.
Social media has taken the world by storm. Whether you are a corporation, politician, or a not-for-profit organization–Twitter is a great tool. Within minutes you can have people talking about what you are saying, simply by posting 140 characters or less.
But if you are like many of us lone tweeters, the only people we have following us are our parents.
So how to get more followers?
There are many ways you can improve your Twitter following, but many cost money. If you do a search for ‘social media’, you are sure to get many sites telling you just what to do–but if you aren’t so tech-savvy, you may find yourself lost in the web.
After going through the process myself, this is what I did:
1. If you don’t already have one, register for a Twitter account.
-Very simple, just go to twitter.com and sign up. It’s completely free and step by step. This is the platform where you will post your messages to the world.
2. Set up Google Alerts.
-Go to google.com/alerts and register. You can enter in search terms for alerts on topics that interest you, just the same way that someone will be able to get alerts on your blogs/tweets (I will explain more later).
3. Get a Twitter Feed account.
-Same thing, go to twitterfeed.com and sign up. This is an automated way to ensure that your messages don’t get lost in the world wide web by automatically posting messages every hour (more to come about this).
4. One more account you will need. Bit.ly shortens long urls into little ones so that you can maximize your 140 character tweet.
Now that you are all signed up:
5. Go to your Google Alerts account.
-Go to ‘manage your alerts’
-Hypothetically speaking, lets say you are interested in dog toys. Hit ‘new alert’, enter in ‘dog toys’.
-Under ‘deliver to’, change from ‘Email’ to ‘Feed’.
-It automatically changes the frequency to ‘as-it-happens’, but you can still change how many results you get up to. Click ‘create alert’.
-Right click on the word ‘Feed’. Copy the link.
6. Go to your Twitter Feed account.
-Hit ‘dashboard’, then click on ‘Create New Feed’.
-Under Feed name, put ‘dog toys’, then paste the link you copied from Google Alerts below in the ‘RSS Feed URL’.
-Click ‘Advanced Settings’. You can set how frequently you want posts to go up and how often it searches. Typically two to four/hour is appropriate. You can change this at any time.
-Under ‘Post Content’ include the title only. It would be too long to include the description too, remember we are only dealing with 140 characters.
-Check the ‘Post Link’ box and shorten link with ‘Bit.ly’. Click on ‘bit.ly settings’. Because you have a Bit.ly account, you can put in your account info.
-Go to your Bit.ly account. Click on your name (log in name you created for the account).
-This brings you to ‘Settings’. Copy your API key and paste it in the ‘API Key’ box on Twitter Feed. Hit ‘Continue to Step 2’.
-Under ‘Available Services’ on your Twitter Feed account page, click on ‘Twitter’. Hit ‘Authenticate Twitter using OAuth’
-Then hit ‘Allow’ when it asks for access to Twitter. This is so that Twitter Feed can publish articles, found in Google Alerts on to your Twitter, with the links shortened by Bit.ly. Hit ‘All Done!’
You should be all set up now. So every hour or so, Twitter Feed will look for relevant articles on Google Alerts and post it on your Twitter. This should generate followers as you will be posting up articles that people who are interested in ‘dog toys’ will want to read. Also, you can post your own comments about the articles so that you aren’t just pointing your followers to others, but actually expressing your own ideas on ‘dog toys’.
If you have a blog of your own, you can post shortened links to your site. Simply copy and paste your long link into the ‘Shorten Link’ box on your Bit.ly page. Then copy and paste the shortened link onto your Twitter message with a short headline about what the article is about.
Once you get the hang of this, you can also look into Social Oomph, which is another social media site that sends out automated welcome messages to new followers.