50 strategies by experts to increase your Social Media followers in 2018
The most critical and most often asked question about Social Media is ‘How to Increase my Social Media followers’? It’s a question everybody wants the answer to.
While you can find numerous tips and strategies out there, most don’t seem to work when actually applied. A lot of articles also supply you with out-dated information. Social Media is constantly changing and evolving, as evident from the new Twitter Automation guidelines, or the Facebook Data Privacy Changes which of course spill over to Instagram too. So in 2018, you need information that applies to the current state of Social Media.
We wanted a clear picture of what works for the Social Media in 2018, so we decided to get some experts to guide us on this topic.
We sent out the question – ‘What is the best strategy to increase your Social Media followers in 2018’ to a host of reputed Social Media bloggers, who are experts in their fields and have built their media presence from the scratch.
And here’s what 50 Social Media experts had to say:
“Instead of focusing on growing followers, change your philosophy to instead focus on helping your existing audience as much as you can. If you work toward providing them with much-needed information and engaging content, they will appreciate it and become ambassadors for your brand without having to be asked.
The quickest way to do that is to use Live Video. Through Live Video, you can easily share your thoughts and valuable information, while at the same time conveying your personality, style, and voice. Seeing you on screen, talking and teaching, allows your audience to get to Know, Like and Trust you exponentially faster.”
“In 2018, it’s still the same as it’s always been – have a professional profile and post great content.
Also, reshare other people’s content and make sure your content is captivating and shareable, with all the right size images.
And engage with your followers, with influencers in your niche and follow the people who follow you.”
“Get started right away, and don’t wait to develop a full-blown strategy. It takes time to build a following and the sooner you get started to better. If you want to continue to reach your market in this social media age, the marketing focus needs to be on building relationships, and metrics need to expand beyond ROI (Return on Investment) to include ROR: Return on Relationship™.
If you are not engaging in your field of expertise on Twitter someone else is, so the first issue is that you are missing that opportunity and handing it to others. Second… if you are not talking about your business, your customers and prospects probably are, and you are not there to participate, engage, interact and most important for your business… listen and lead.”
“I would ask you to tell a story, rather than merely trying to sell. We have reached that point in the digital era where people seldom get the opportunity to get spoken to.
At this juncture, if a brand understands what they need, and offers them a solution, then the customers would look up to it, for a long time.
Alongside placing their trust in the brand, they will also become an evangelist and speak for it as well.
The art of storytelling must be a wholesome combination of
- Pointing at the consumer problems (& make them think)
- Discussing the details without overdoing them (win their agreement and not their frowns)
- Starting with the pitching of solution (that germinates their trust on your brand)
These stories will attract engagement, followers, and business as well.”
“Put the effort into engaging with your audience.
Reply to their comments, ask them questions, help to share their content.
It’s not all about promoting yourself – it’s like life in general, if you help people (without any expectation of getting something in return), they’re much more likely to help you…”
“Businesses of all sizes need to inject personality, customization, and attentiveness into their social media strategies. Long gone are the days of auto-posting tools and cross-posting, no active time spent on social media platforms engaging with other users, and not showing the human side of the brand and the people behind it.
All of the social media streams are crowded places now, so in order to establish and grow a devoted following on your social media channels, you need to approach your social strategy from the standpoint of you as a human connecting with other humans.”
“The best strategy to increase your quality of social media followers is to be present online, to engage your audience and to be unique and authentic! Your strategy should include a daily presence on all platforms and not just to post, but to also answer questions, react to other people’s content and to engage with your audience. People want to follow and connect with people they know, like and trust so put yourself out there for people to get to know you!
Go live on Facebook and Instagram, tweet at people, get active in Facebook groups, post to LinkedIn. Share stories, anecdotes, videos, and pictures of topics you are passionate about as well as share valuable industry information to position yourself as the subject expert. Lastly, expect this process to be a marathon, not a sprint. Nearly no one builds an audience like this overnight!”
“The best social media growth strategies haven’t changed that much in recent years; in order to grow consistently and organically, you need to, most importantly, be active and everything that that entails:
- Post something every day – preferably several times a day,
- Engage with users and followers every day,
- Join groups,
- Curate amazing content,
- Use more visual content like photos and videos, and finally,
- Be strategic – post at times of maximum impact, create content that will get you better results that are based on your own social media analytics, and continue to follow your analytics to be able to optimize your social media content and overall presence based on your results.”
“First, I’d ask why you’re trying to increase your social media followers in 2018. It sounds simplistic, but more followers isn’t necessarily better if you don’t have a plan for engaging them and converting them into customers. Why go through the trouble if the only thing you get out of increasing your social media promotional efforts is a higher follower count that makes you feel better about yourself, but doesn’t actually do anything for your bottom line?
If you’re serious about social media because it’s proven an effective sales tool for you in the past, or because you see the potential to develop a community space in your niche, then the best tip I have is to make sure you’re providing value in every interaction and every piece of content you create. Note that I mean real value. Longer isn’t necessarily better, and asking questions isn’t valuable if no one’s listening. Ask yourself critically whether you’re providing genuine value. Any increase in followers you’re able to achieve will be a by-product of the impact you have on people and the value you bring to their lives.”
“People choose who they want to follow very visually these days, especially on Instagram. We’re working to make all of our clients’ Instagram accounts more stylized, using mood boards and color palettes to coordinate the images we post. A beautiful, consistent Instagram presence welcomes new followers from the first glance at their profile.
On other platforms, make an equally good impression when people visit your profile: make sure your header images are up-to-date, your bios are complete and of value to visitors, and you’re using all of the features available to your account, such as Featured Boards on Pinterest. People make very quick decisions about whether to click the Follow (or Like) button, so make it easy for them by giving them all of your info upfront.”
“The best strategy for me to recommend is one that is relevant to your industry and has genuine content from you. Each platform, LinkedIn, FB, etc have their own target demographic so it is best to focus on the one closest to your demographics so you can optimize the time spent developing your following. Too many people waste time and money on social media platforms that have no relevance to their product or service.
It’s important to determine if your social media efforts are geared towards selling your product or service or are focused on creating brand awareness. Personally, my social media introduces me to followers and allows me to be part of their daily routine. At some point, I will get an interview, ask to be on consumer forums, field business opportunities or a speaking engagement. I rarely get or ask for direct sales from social media. This allows me to be more genuine with my people”
“We are in the age of connection in 2018, people want to connect with people they find inspiring or who regularly share information that is helpful to them in some way either personally or in their business journey.
The best way to increase your social media followers is to show up regularly on your platform of choice, share your best knowledge freely and engage with your followers in a meaningful way. When new people find your profile and see you provide great value and are engaged they will naturally want to follow and connect with you.”
“One of the most important things you can do to grow your social media is by paying attention to your data. Take a look at your content and see what is getting the most shares. Study your analytics and figure out what social networks are bringing in the most traffic.
If you can’t measure, you can’t improve. By looking at the numbers, you’ll be able to see what social networks yield the best results so you know what you should focus on.”
“The best way to have friends is to be one! I have a simple 3 step plan for this:
1. FOLLOW FIRST
2. FOLLOW BACK
3. FOLLOW UP”
“I’d say focus on collaborations.
Build relationships with others in your field and come together to offer maximum value to a shared audience.
This is an excellent way to your visibility and as such your followers.”
“Social Media channels have evolved a lot and old strategies for growth don’t work anymore. Also, there is no “one size fits all” growth strategy for all channels. Here is what I would recommend for channel-specific growth:
Facebook: Facebook is pay to play platform so get creative at running awareness Ads to attract the right type of fans.
Instagram: Influencer shoutouts work great. Find relevant influencers in your niche and ask them for shoutouts.
LinkedIn: LinkedIn is the new Facebook. It’s not a resume and job site anymore. If you post daily content and engage with your audience, you can still grow organically.
Twitter: Twitter has changed rules on automation so a lot of tools that worked in the past are not safe anymore. Use Twitter ads to attract the right type of followers.”
“1) Post interesting and helpful content targeted toward your audience
2) Know and understand your audience and solve their problems
3) Engage and build relationships with your followers and those you follow in return
4) Use relevant hashtags
5) Use automation sparingly. It’s a reality for most of us, as we don’t have time to stay on social media all day long. But don’t “hit and run” by just posting and never engaging. Respect your followers and cultivate real relationships.
6) Remember that relationships build trust, and trust facilitates buying
7) Don’t try to game the system — the follow/unfollow games some users play only irritates others. Anyone with a sizable following in 2018 knows when they are unfollowed. This annoys me and when a business does it, I’m less likely to engage and follow, and will probably never buy.
Just do it the right way with quality content and the real people will be interested in what you have to say.”
“Influencer marketing is one the best ways to attract followers and build your own audience for 2018 and beyond. With all of the competing voices out there, its one of the best ways to cut through the noise and get to your ideal audience. Even better, you don’t need a lot of influencers to do it, you just need to find and select the right ones.
These are the influencers who have an audience you want to reach. Once you do, begin cultivating relationships with them. You do this by giving value before you ask for it in return. When you do ask, they’ll be happy to help you. So be sure to cultivate relationships with influencers because you’ll be able to work with them over and over again.”
“Exit-Intent PopUps – When a user is leaving my website, I have a lead-gen popup that gets them to subscribe to my newsletter.
After subscribing a Facebook like button appears for them to click.
This gets good results!”
“Your strategy to increase social media followers should employ the following methods:
• Launch a campaign with a specific call to action
• Create a paid promotion targeting lookalike audiences. A lookalike audience is a group of people who could like your page because they have similar interests to those who already do like your page.
• Use content marketing to share educational resources for your audience. This helps boost engagement when your audience shares your content with others and thus, increases followers.
• Create an overall paid promotion, keeping in mind this will be less than 10% organic visibility to followers”
“Make sure you invest enough time in creating and implementing a separate strategy for each channel.
Measure and analyze your results and iterate.
Experiment around what works best for each channel.
Research what social channel makes sense for you to reach out to your target audience. Not every channel is applicable for every company.”
“Focus on consistently creating highly shareable content – and promote them through outreach and paid social ads. Content formats that work really well when it comes to social sharing are visual content, videos, and long-form guides.
The more people you reach through your posts, the more you get your brand out there (and attract more potential followers). In Facebook marketing, you can easily invite people who are engaging with your materials to follow your page.”
“Our team will be using Retargeted ads from one channel to another, Using our ever green blog posts and using that content in video format to engage users more.”
“It really can depend on the business but the bedrock of most good social strategies is a solid content marketing strategy.
Create great content and then share it with your channels”
“Some of the best strategies for increasing your social media followers, that has worked very well for me, and some of the sites I look after follows:
Twitter – Participating in events or activities focused on a local issue, or your niche always get regular genuine followers. You should also post new tweets with great pictures regularly. Just retweeting other people’s tweets does not work very well.
Facebook – The users of this platform are not as discerning as Twitter users. Lots of new posts with great pictures will get you a lot of followers on Facebook. It has worked very well for Hope Spring water FB page.
Instagram: On this platform you have to post a lot of pictures with loads of hashtags with each picture. The more pictures and hashtags, the more followers you will get.
Participating in groups, where you each bring other group members social media page to the attention of your audiences is also a great way to grow your social media followers.”
“One of the best ways to increase Social Media followers is to create engaging content. Infographics, data and statistics enriched content, list posts are some of the best types of content that get a lot of social shares. And this, in turn, can help improve brand visibility leading to more followers on varied social channels.
Another technique that I make use of is posting frequently and at a consistent time, this helps enhance user engagement. Also, I make sure to use the correct hashtags (#SocialMedia), as most readers use them when searching for content on social platforms, thus helping me further improve my social reach.”
“I am focusing on Facebook, because that’s where my clientele can best be found since I work with individuals and not businesses.
My favorite strategy is to join groups where my target market hangs out and interact with them and eventually invite them to be added as friends.
I have created a friend’s list just for them. I also created a group lately that focuses solely on what I help women with.”
“It is easy to blow up your social media following. This strategy has worked for me first on Twitter and more recently on Instagram. Find an influencer in your niche and follow their followers. Most will follow you back. The problem will be that not all will follow you back. This might throw your ratio out of alignment.
You want the number of people who follow you to be less than the number of people you follow. People like to follow a winner. That’s the bandwagon effect– what’s popular (in this case, who is popular) must be good. I used unfollow tools like Followers, Commun.iT, and Crowdfire to help keep my ratios in check.”
“When ever people talk about building followers the first word that gets thrown around is “engage” or “engagement”. The idea is in order to build a following people must feel engaged. This is possibly the best means of building an audience but also is the most commonly misunderstood means. Engaging isn’t only about producing content that people will click or like, but it to true engagement.
This means reaching out to people, following them, asking them questions, addressing their content, liking what others write. Engagement means being active with the people who you want to follow you. When you show interest in others they will show interest in you. Remember it is “social” media.”
“Collaborating with others in a similar or relevant field to yours is one of the best ways to increase Social Media followers. Collaborating with other like-minded individuals or businesses will enable you to tap into their social media following and make sure your brand gets in front of the right audience.
Working with an authority figure in your niche (or even just a mention from them) can be worth its weight in gold. Word of mouth goes a long way both offline and online in 2018.”
“This depends on many factors – such as what your budget is and which platform it is.
It is important to note that the number of followers doesn’t really matter if there is no engagement.
For Facebook, I would recommend using paid ads to get followers fast – however, you have to ensure that the accumulated followers are in your target audience. A combination of videos and paid ads work well in 2018.”
“Think of your social media platforms as a huge online networking party with different rooms. Social media is all about engagement, you must spend time interacting with people online, just as you would at a networking party. Posts can be automated, but human interaction cannot, which is the element that lots of people ironically leave out when it comes to business online.
Don’t be that person at the networking party that just talks about themselves, be the one that has conversations, gets to know other people and connects them to the resources they are looking for. People remember how you make them feel online AND in person, it’s the same, we are all humans! So if you’re particularly helpful, you’re going to stand out!”
“It’s all about creating value in the shortest period of time that you can. In 2018 more than ever before, it’s become more important than ever before to make a solid impression in a short period of time. This year is filled with more social networks than ever before leading to more distractions.
The window of opportunity to make an impression on potential followers is shorter than ever. The key is to create valuable content that will appeal to an audience relevant to yours. “
“The best strategy to increase your social media followers doesn’t change from year to year. It stays consistent throughout time. In order to generate social media followers, you need to do a multitude of things.
You need a trustworthy profile photo, a compelling cover image, a social media intro that combines your personality and your expertise, a bio that allows others to relate to you and content that goes above and beyond and displays your expertise mixed with a lot of personal stories. But this is just the foundation. You also need to start conversations with others, connect with their material and be proactive in building relationships.”
“You have to focus on building relationships. If you think of potential followers as friends you just haven’t met yet, then you will behave differently. You won’t start out by asking them to share a post or buy something from you. You will ask them how you can help them. You will read their posts and share their content. You will introduce them to your existing friends and encourage your current followers to introduce themselves to your new friend.
After a while, the follower will usually do the same. They will feel compelled to visit your site or check out some of your social media posts. They will share some of your content. They may even feature you in a round-up post, invite you to write a guest post, ask you to appear on their podcast, or invite you to participate in a virtual summit. You never know.
I’d like to give an example. When I was young people were more neighborly. If someone new moved into your community, you would take them some food or a plant. You would offer to help them move in or tell them where they could buy the best groceries. You might offer to watch their kids or run an errand. Then when you needed a favor you knew you could call them up and say hey I really need some help. So, stop thinking of your social media networks as faceless numbered followers and start thinking about them as new friends and neighbors who you can’t wait to meet.”
“Lately, I focused a lot on Twitter. There are many ways to grow your followers but it’s important to make it in a genuine way so you get engagement as well. One of the problems that I noticed is that many people think that Twitter is dead. The truth is that Twitter is still a powerful platform but you have to return to the basics.
Using too many tools and automating everything is not good. Yes, you can use tools like HootSuite, AgoraPulse or Buffer to schedule posts, but make a habit of spending 20-30 minutes on Twitter daily interacting with your followers, thanking them for the for retweeting your content, tweeting spontaneously, sending gifs etc. By being genuine and authentic, I managed to gather over 10k followers on Twitter and this number grows everyday.”
“It’s hugely important when building a social media following that you grow an audience who loves your stuff! You want to connect, build rapport and have them watching, reading & consuming anything you publish. Over the last few years a lot has been said of stories & useful content never has that been truer than it is today.
People want to be educated, entertained & connected with at an emotional level. How can you connect?? One of the tools I’ll be using this year in a big way is FB Live. Nothing beats live interaction for connecting and getting to know your audience in a super personal way. But in all honesty, the tools you use to connect are just that – tools. If you consistently ask yourself the question, ‘how can I connect with my audience at a meaningful level’, how can I add value, be useful and create content they look forward to seeing?’ – you’ll be on your way!”
“Be present where you are. Rather a few social media channels where your target market is, and then be there and connect with them, rather than be all over and not being present. In my business it is Facebook and Instagram, and I love being in touch with my audience.
When you are present you will discover that you will connect with them in a new a deeper way that will lead you to for instance create content that fit them much better than what you are used to. Content that fits them 100% and content that will make them love you even more and recommend you again and again.”
“The best strategy to increase your followers is to post and engage on your social media channels with ‘consistency’. It is just like in blogging or SEO or in almost any other online marketing platform.
Whatever your marketing plans, make sure you are consistent with the content you post and in your engagement levels with your followers. Users not only want fresh, interesting, and useful content they also love it when they feel connected with your business/brand/celebrity name.”
“The biggest thing I suggest focusing on is authenticity. Truly, just being yourself and letting your freak flag fly is what’s going to attract tons of people to your blog & biz — and not only that, but they’ll be the right kind of people. People who love you, love what you do, and can’t wait to work with you and buy everything you’re selling!
Don’t be afraid to get a bit vulnerable on social media. The “perfect life” facade is dying away, and most people are looking to make connections with real-life people, not millionaires who ride around on yachts and drive Bentleys. Show up on social media every day, come as you are, and share meaningful, authentic content that helps your audience grow and succeed.”
“Focus your energy on one social network. If you want to grow an audience, you need to pick one social network and focus only on that one network.
The biggest mistake I see entrepreneurs make with social media is to attempt to build a following on every single channel. Naturally, it’s impossible to run your business and be active on every social channel. Most entrepreneurs invest in tools to automate it for them and completely remove the “social” aspect from social media.
Instead of automating lifeless activity to five channels, get fully engaged on one channel. Share helpful content multiple times a day. Follow your peers and ideal customers and engage with their content. Ask thought-provoking questions and respond back when someone comments. Focusing your time and attention on one channel will grow your audience much faster than spreading yourself thin over multiple channels.”
“The best strategy to increase your Social Media followers in 2018 is to keep in mind What, Why, and Who in mind. What you intend to do? What is the purpose? And who is the audience you are targeting? Engagement will automatically start happening if you are clear about these facts. Then you will be always focused on creating meaningful posts that will start bringing in more tractions, engagements, and followers.
Also, depending on the social media, you need to design your posts accordingly. Like, a post without an image will have fewer chances of transactions than the posts having an image. The image obviously has to be relevant to the post. All size posts and images will not fit on all social media platforms.”
“I’d say it’s all about being consistent and engaging with your followers without being salesy. Just be yourself and share your story in content that feels natural to you. Whatever content you’re creating for social media can be repurposed and re-published in various forms.
E.g. you could write a status update that shares your story, have a designer create a couple of graphics for Instagram and Pinterest from it, maybe have an animator create a short video for Facebook and Youtube, or just republish bits and pieces on Twitter. I find it a good move from platforms like Facebook to penalize click-bait / comment-bait posts.
To me, this opens the door for having truly meaningful interactions with your audience and to build a relationship with your followers. That’s the beauty of having a small following. You can get to know your followers on a deep level. Good luck answering all the comments you’d get on an Instagram profile with 200k followers.”
“Be social. Interact with people on Social Media. Comment, like, share. Don’t spam. be a huge asset to the community. For instance: At GlobalOwls we help nonprofits, marketers and designers. We need to be able to have great conversations with them on social. Others from the nonprofit, marketing and design community will see it and find us helpful and genuine.
People are obsessed with sending their messages because that’s what we did with television. On social we have the power to have one on one conversations which are much more meaningful and genuine. Be patient. It’s better to have 1000 real followers than to have 10.000 not so real followers.”
“One of the most important reasons for any brand or person to be on social media is to not only share great information that will build awareness around your brand (to hopefully sell more products or services), but to inspire others to live a better life.
It doesn’t matter what category your business is in, people will follow you if you make them smile.
So, if you want to build your following on social media, give people a fantastic reason to follow you, which means sharing information, inspiration, and engagement that lifts people up.”
“At BIZBoost, We have an in-house rule of simplicity, that is “Give & Get.” It comes down to the basics of “Creating & Contributing Mutual Value” within a community who gets you. But first, you got to build a community. Observe, Analyze, & Come up through a dimension of diversity. Relationships first, human to human.
That’s the only Long Term Key Performance Indicator of a brand/company’s Social Influence, Authenticity, Authority, & Buzz Worthy Impact. Target Audiences with Efficiency, take time to research & study the Social Psychology, & Apply the Neuropsychology within your Social Media actions in Total Symphony, with Precision, Discipline & Peace of Mind.”
“Don’t post out for the sake of it! This is especially true for Twitter. When I check my twitter feed, all I really want to see is all of the good and relevant posts, so I often find myself unfollowing people that are constantly filling my feed with junk.
And while I do notice an increase in followers when I post, it’s usually due to my post being of good quality.”
“Obviously, you need a comprehensive marketing strategy which includes a social media strategy, but my belief is that in today’s market, the absolute most important thing is providing value to your audience. Whatever the strategy is, it’s got to start with creating and providing valuable content to your audience. If people don’t want or need what you’re putting out, no strategy will work.
When you think about your own social habits, it makes a lot of sense. You’re scrolling through the newsfeed on your social platform of choice – what type of content is powerful enough to make you stop and click? Unless it’s something ultra-relevant and valuable to your specific needs, you won’t even notice it. If you want to get noticed on social media today, you need to invest the time to figure out who your ideal audience is, and what they want from you.”
“Social Media is not optional anymore. So, since you are going to do it, it’s important that you have a plan and strategy for what you do. You can’t afford for it to take all of your time but you want it to be results-oriented, so you get more clients and customers without having it take all day or costing you lots of money because you have your business to run. So, to get the most bang for your buck and to increase your following in 2018 do the following 5 things consistently:
1) Focus on the channel your audience hangs out on
2) Post daily with content that solves your audience’s biggest problem
3) Track which posts get your best engagement, do more of that and less of the ones that fall flat
4) Always reply to anyone who comments on any posts you make
5) Rinse and Repeat. Consistency is the key to success and don’t give up!”
“Be real, provide content that matters to your audience, be emphatic and passionate about what you do and avoid direct selling unless you have a special offer in a special occasion.
Social media is all about sharing and expressing your thoughts and ideas. Share interesting content and talk about trendy topics in your niche.”
It really depends on the social network you want to grow. The best strategy on Pinterest is completely different than on Twitter or Instagram. The first step should be to decide which social media platform is the right one for you and your business.
The biggest mistake people are making is trying to grow every single social media platform at once. Try one or two, find out if there’s your audience, learn how to attract them, master it, automate it and then move to the other platform.
But sure, there are strategies that work for every social platform and it’s crucial for your success to follow them.
- Be authentic
- Be helpful
- Talk to your target market! (This is especially important. Don’t try to serve everyone, you’ll serve no one.)
- Structure your content (publish updates, polls, surveys, ask questions, host contests, etc..)
- Be consistent!!! (Create a content calendar, schedule the updates in advance and stick to it!)
So there you are, 50 experts, with 51 effective strategies to apply. So go on and apply these strategies to your Social Media accounts and see the follower count grow and multiply in a healthy and organic manner. Do share your Social Media strategies in the comments.