The original version of this post was published on April 19, 2014 on SwitchandShift.com by Ted Coiné.
A Social CEO’s Perspective: 10 Ways to Earn 100,000 Followers
Social media results come from three things in equal measure: good karma, daily practice, and a ton of experimentation to see what works.
I wrote an earlier version of this article when I had recently reached the milestone of 100,000 followers on Twitter. Now that I’m nearing 400,000 do you know what I’ve found? This advice has stood the test of time…
1. Have Fun
The number one rule of business, and of life: if it isn’t fun, you’re doing it wrong. That goes double for social media. Seriously, folks. Enjoy every minute of it. Don’t make it work! Instead, give it another four-letter word: PLAY!
2. Remember: It’s Just a Number
Instead of followers, we should call each other “people.” Insofar as I improve the day or even the moment of a “person,” that’s what’s important. Chasing numbers is like chasing dollars: how much is enough? When will you ever be satisfied? That’s not why I’m here.
3. Have a Goal
In other words, know why you’re engaging in Twitter. My original goal was to build an audience for my next book. So having a lot of followers makes sense for me – but maybe not for you.
Maybe you’re just here to meet people with shared interests. Maybe you’re here to learn. You don’t need a zillion followers for any of those things. So I won’t judge you for having 60 followers; no one else will either.
4. More Social. Less Media.
There’s no freakin’ way I could tweet all day every day just in hopes of selling a few extra books “at some point” in the distant future. The nice thing about Twitter, and the reason I’m so hooked, is all the rewarding interactions I have throughout my day, week, month, and year. The more you actually interact (rather than broadcast), the more addictive Twitter becomes.
Don’t rob yourself of the best part of this adventure: be social.
5. Sow Good Karma
Be nice. We each have it within our power to make the world a little bit better or a little bit worse with every single thing we do. Use your time Tweeting to make the world just a hair better for those with whom you interact.
6. Dance with the Date That Brought You
I hear there’s a trend for people to gather a sizable following by following back, then dump most of those followers so they’ll look like a celebrity. Not cool. If you build a following by establishing a reputation as someone who follows back, who respects his followers and is grateful for them, then see Tip Number 6 and don’t be a jerk when you approach celebrity status.
7. Build Real Relationships
As you build your personal network, you’re going to find some remarkable people on Twitter. Folks who share your interests and folks who make you think and laugh, spread out all over the world. Cultivate those relationships. Enjoy them. “Tweet-friends” today become “face-to-face friends” tomorrow.
8. Klout? What’s Klout?
Do you really want to let someone else decide what behaviors to encourage and which to penalize you for? To sum up your online existence with a single, inherently superficial number?
You’re better than that.
9. Your Network is Better than Google and Wikipedia
You know what I do when I want to properly attribute a quote or find the title to a book I heard about that I can’t find on Amazon? I tweet out a question! In seconds, my question is answered, with links and helpful advice and… it’s sometimes overwhelming! This is the secret joy of networking – and it has become one of my favorite aspects of the Twitterverse!
10. Give Ten Times Before You Ask Once
This concept is not just for Twitter. In the Social Age, your reputation – good or bad – gets amplified. Build a reputation as a relentless giver. Next time you launch a new product, career – or maybe a book – your friends will line up to ask how they can help you.
Now, go build your network. Explore. Kick the tires. Test boundaries. Make mistakes. Don’t ever be afraid of failure. Be afraid of timidity. Be afraid of never leaving your comfort zones.
Ted Coiné is the Chairman and Founder of SwitchandShift.com, which works with leadership to focus on the human side of business, and he is host of The Human Side TV, where he interviews the most fascinating minds in business each week. One of the most influential business experts on the Web, Ted has been top-ranked by Forbes, Inc., SAP Business Innovation, and Huffington Post as a top mind in the fields of business leadership, customer experience, and social media. Ted is a three-time CEO and a popular keynote speaker with over 350,000 followers on Twitter – and growing rapidly.
Together with Mark Babbitt, they will be releasing their book A World Gone Social on September 22, 2014.