Social

The commonest question am asked about Twitter

Well how do I start this? Okay. Most times, many of my former school mates, friends and even some people I’ve met online always ask me this one question: Mugi, how did you get all those followers, MANN?

I have been privileged to go through all the stages and cycle of owning a Twitter and what always happens to most people. The cycle is usually: you get to hear of this thing called Twitter, you are excited to hear about it, you then create an account/sign up. Most of us have even been guilty of what am going to mention next; – 😂 soon as you join, you proceed to follow celebrities, well because they are who Twitter suggest for you, anyway. I do remember in my days when I joined (May 2013), was in my senior two and I was so much into hip hop in that upon I joined Twitter, Future Hendrix was among the first five accounts I followed, followed by Pitbull, Chris Brown and Justin Timberlake since I liked his ‘Mirrors” song. Back in the day, growing an account really “costed a rib and lung”. All am saying, it was too damn hard.

One day, still around 2013, while in the school staff room, I requested my computer teacher for help with their laptop to check do research for an essay; but my underlying want was to check on the number of my Twitter followers. I saw I had clocked 18 followers. Y’all should have seen how excited I was. To be honest, I lowkey felt like a celebrity. Man, 18 followers for someone of my age then was something huge gweee. Anyways, I then deserted the social networking site, because I did not have much to do with it anyway except follow award shows, and share my views about topics on XFM. The deserting stage is the final stage in everyone’s Twitter journey/ story; till all of a sudden you realize Twitter is the in- thing and all of a sudden you have access to all these memes, news updates, giveaways etc.

As of today, my account has close to 12,308 followers. How did I make it this far? Well, I’ll share a few tips and ways to grow an account. But before we even go into it, one thing you must know is that; “the journey to growing an account is like any other journey in life, and requires this thing called P.A.T.I.E.N.C.E.

Signing Up/Creating an account:

This is pretty much basic. All one has to do is visit the Twitter website and sign up. Or you can do through the Twitter mobile app. You’ll be asked basic details about you like your name, email address , date of birth (for age restriction purpose since persons below 13 are illegible to belong on there, plus the D.O.B helps Twitter display your birthday when it has reached), plus a profile photo (though on Twitter its called an Avi, but its all the same. Its still a picture). Also, during this sign-up process, Twitter will also ask you to check on your ‘Interests” (tick tick through them). It could be sports, music, news and politics etc. This allows it to make suitable and rightful people within your interests reach to follow. I guess that’s why during my time, Future and the likes were suggested; because I had checked the “Music” option.

Twitter can be quite lonely by the way. More so when you have just joined it. it always looks like everyone who’s there knows the other and then there’s you. The app therefore always suggests that you “Invite” people from your contacts list/ phone book to join the platform as well, so it can be a little comfortable around for you, so you feel at ease.

It is also good to follow at least 15 or more people the day you join Twitter. At least 5 of those will follow you back. Assuming they have done so, or not. Here are my few tips on how to grow your Twitter account regardless.

  1. Do make sure that you have an avi (profile picture). This aside, have a short biography about you. A bio is that immediate space under your profile picture on Twitter. A bio could be of you describing the type of work you do, or your football team, or causes you believe in, or the name of your business/ what you deal in. It could be about anything you find interesting or makes sense to you. Whatever the case, a bio always attracts people to Timelines/ accounts. For example, in mine, I do talk about “my love for music, radio, food, two of my favorite artists Khalid, and A Pass, plus the kind of work I do- which is marketing and digital content creation”. That way, the short bio is likely to bring in like minded people, who could share similar interests or something of the kind.
  2. Engagement is Key. Engagement is like interaction with the people you follow, those who follow or even those with whom you may not follow each other. Engagements come in various ways; i) retweeting their content, liking it, or even sending a reply or quote on their posts/ tweets. Alternatively, you could reply to those who reply to your posts, follow those you find interesting, or really knowledgeable, or humorous, do the retweeting and liking as well where you find it necessary. Another form of engagement is asking questions. It could be on what people think about a certain item, product, movie, song, or topic, food, mobile app or pretty much anything. Engagement is one thing I must say has been my biggest boaster of my follower count. You could ask for recommendations about what series your followers are watching, what they are having for lunch or anything. Always remember to be as engaging as possible.
    Image Courtesy: Techjaja

3. Being regular (having a consistent online presence). Like you’d find it hard to have to keep up with a TV show whose release dates are never certain, and have chances of being cancelled minus you even being in the know, it’s kind of hard and tiring to keep staying on your tenterhooks over something whose occurrence you are not sure of. In the same way, people would find it hard following someone say, we are in July 2020, but the person last tweeted in April 2018 as opposed to someone whose last post was on 17th June,2020. Don’t know if you are getting my point, but bottom line is, do have a steady presence online. This does not mean you shouldn’t have a normal life outside but rather being on Twitter all time, NO, just create time for both. Have a balance.

4. Do follow back people who constantly engage with your content. Those who are always retweeting, or liking, or commenting on your stuff you post. It creates good rapport or a good relationship between them and you. Of course, you could be like Nah, Mugi, it is just Twitter. Yes, perhaps you are right. But again, do remember it is a social networking site, and there is a potential that on this platform, could be your next employer, business associates, girlfriend, husband or even best friend. This brings me to something that had almost skipped my mind: which is:

5. With a regular presence does mean you have to keep posting stuff. The biggest mistake many folks of our time do is jump onto whichever topic is trending so as to also have a say, or for relevance. It is not bad to share a view about a topic that is setting the internet ablaze, however as you do this, make sure you are saying facts or also be ready for criticism or being called out by those who might not agree with whatever you are posting. Which is why I usually advise and actually do practice myself, let a topic pass. No one is holding you at ransom to share about it. the light side of jumping on the bandwagon of topics is it brings in major engagements in terms of retweets, likes and stuff, but like I said, it does have a dark side to it. Me as me, I’d recommend you set yourself a niche when it comes to content. (a niche is what a lay man would call, specializing; for example, you could be good at football/series and movie recommendations/ politics/ or music/ or making great analyses of events. Simply stick to that. It brings in like minded people; as earlier stated somewhere above here… At the end of the day, it is about socializing not a public show off of knowledge.

6. This is the least recommended option but well, there is also something called “Follow Trains” which is basically a scratch my back, I scratch yours kinda situation. What happens with these is that someone posts asking people who wish to grow their following to comment their Twitter handles under that tweet, and follow whoever has replied there and do the same for those who do follow them. This allows your account actually soar. The main disadvantages with it are; i) you could easily lose your account incase of a Twitter purge, since most times, during this process Twitter deletes bots/ fake accounts; of which many of these trains survive on the existence of bots. ii) many times, you will be so focused on growing your following, instead of focusing on your already existing genuine followers. Remember, no number of followers can ever be enough. You just have to settle where you are and keep engaging with those you have, and the following will grow steadily.

 

Common misconceptions about Twitter:

  1. The more followers the better. This is partially false because like stated at the end of my 6th tip, no number of followers can ever be enough. When you make 100, your mind will crave to make a thousand followers, when you hit 1K, then the mind will keep craving a following of at least 10,000 followers. It is better to settle where you are and build on that. Numbers are a necessity in scenarios where you wish to become a social media influencer where a 10K follower account maybe a requirement, but even those with 2,000 or even 1,000 actually do qualify to identify as influencers. You just have to keep your engagements and content guard up there.

2. Also, retweets or the number of likes you get off the platform should not define you. At the end of the day, the main thing was to communicate your message. Retweets may be a major concern when you are participating in a giveaway and do need their count as a vote, or when you are an influencer and your client wishes to see big engagements.

3. It is okay not to have what to post sometimes. These off days do happen to everyone. This is where you simply just scroll through the timeline and simply engage with other people’s content instead.

4. The unhealthiest way to grow your account is trolling, body shaming, or ever involving yourself in any form of cyber bullying anyone. You may find it fun; it may bring in engagements, but do remember, it is not cool to do to others what you wouldn’t be comfortable being done to you. It not only costs your victims mentally but also destroys your online reputation. Just imagine being remembered as the guy’ lady who’s the reason someone feels insecure on Twitter or online or even depressed (or any other form of mental breakdown because of you).

That’s been it. thank you for the read. Wish you golden success with growing your accounts, lads and ladies. Found this helpful? Feel free to and tweet me your thoughts: I am @Mugibson on Twitter.