First and foremost, Twitter is NOT a popularity contest. Let’s be straight about that. A perceived low number of followers really means nothing. Okay, so Katy Perry is approaching 100 million now, but she’s definitely NOT a small business looking to engage with its customers.
The problem when you’ve just started out on Twitter is that it can be a rather daunting place. You’re not quite sure who to follow first and have no idea where your own first followers are going to come from.
Forget that for a moment and send your first tweet. Even if nobody is going to see it, go ahead and do it anyway. Think of it as your introduction to the Twitter world.
Your first tweet should be short and sweet. Something like: “Hey everyone! We’re now on Twitter. Looking forward to engaging with new followers once we’re all setup.” You can even add an image to make your tweet stand out that little bit more.
[Recommended read: Twitter’s 140-Character Update: What You Need to Know]
With your first tweet now firmly under your belt, it’s time to start following some people. Who you choose to follow will inevitably depend on your industry and your business, but remember that whoever you choose will have a bearing on who follows you back. Some good examples of people to follow might be friends, colleagues, professionals in your industry, other local businesses, and even current or prospective customers.
Mayvin Tip: Follow businesses that are similar to yours and who are nailing it on Twitter. Study their tweets, especially how they are engaging with their followers and the types of content they are sharing.
Obviously you don’t want to just copy them, but it’s an exercise that will give you a really good, first-hand insight into your own potential.
Also, Twitter’s own ‘Who to follow’ recommendations can be a great way to connect with new people. It currently appears to the right of your main Twitter feed (on the desktop version):
Finally, let people know you’re now on Twitter. If they follow you on other social media channels there’s a chance they’ll want to connect with you on Twitter too. That’s why you should make sure that links to your new Twitter profile are featured in your newsletters and other correspondence.