Everybody always wants more Twitter followers, but few people actually implement one of the simplest strategies to attract them.
I’ve gained a few new particularly influential followers of my personal Twitter account in the past couple weeks and thought I’d share how that happened. It’s a simple tactic that can be done by anybody and while it doesn’t work 100% of the time, it works often enough to make an impact on your Twitter success.
It’s a ridiculously simple two step process:
Step 1: Every time you come across something interesting, tweet a link to it or reference it in a tweet and recommend it to your followers.
Step 2: Look to see if the person who created it has a Twitter account, and reference their account name in the tweet you post, giving them credit for what they created.
That’s it. I know it seems obvious, but it’s amazing how few people actually do this and it really works.
What winds up happening when you do this is that the person you tagged in the tweet inevitably gets a notification when you’ve mentioned their name and it leads them to check out your tweet and your account.
Because you’ve sent some attention their way, they will likely be appreciative and usually will either favorite your tweet (good for you), reply to your tweet (better for you), retweet it (even better for you), or follow you (the best for you in the long term).
This can be a powerful tool not only because it can attract attention from more people to your tweets, but also because it allows you to target specific influential people who you might want to know that you exist.
For example, if there’s a booker, or journalist, or YouTube star that you want to be aware of you then look for opportunities to share things they’ve created and tag them in the tweets.
Here’s a few examples of tweets I’ve recently posted where I did this and what came of them.
Example 1: Drew Curtis and Fark
After listening to a recent episode of the James Altucher podcast in which he interviewed Fark founder Drew Curtis, I posted the following tweet.
Some great thoughts from @drewcurtis about the Internet, business, & the business of the Internet http://t.co/j8feqn3hwl
— Josh Spector (@jspector) December 22, 2014
Sure enough, Drew Curtis saw the tweet and retweeted it to his 12,000 followers. On top of that, the Fark account (with 25,000 followers!) also retweeted and favorited the tweet. Fark also followed me, which was great considering they only follow about 700 people at this point and hypothetically have the opportunity to share future things I post with a lot of people.
This reminds me of one more suggestion related to this. As a general rule, you’re better off tagging the individual author of an article as opposed to the publication because that person is more likely to see it than the overall publication.
For example, if you share a Buzzfeed article you’ll want to find the Twitter account of the author of that article instead of (or in addition to) just tagging @Buzzfeed.
Example 2: Gary Vaynerchuk
After reading an interesting blog post from Gary Vaynerchuk, I decided to share a link to it and reference Gary in the tweet. Here’s what I posted:
"I collect people." A smart take on business aspirations from @garyvee http://t.co/HrXkf5Q9fZ
— Josh Spector (@jspector) December 10, 2014
Sure enough, Gary wound up seeing that I had mentioned him, replied to my tweet and followed me. He’s following about 7,000 people, but I’m still honored to be in the mix and be followed by a guy with over a million followers and one of the leading voices in the world when it comes to digital marketing.
Example 3: Four Bands
I wrote a simple post on my blog highlighting a few songs from newer bands that I had recently discovered and decided to tag the bands when I shared a link to the post on Twitter. Here’s the tweet:
5 Songs I’ve Been Listening To Lately – @TheHunts @EdTangMusic @AndrewMcMahon @fieldreport http://t.co/gIXG0mEe6O
— Josh Spector (@jspector) November 3, 2014
Sure enough, three of the bands favorited the tweet, one retweeted it, and one of them followed me.
The Point Is…
While these three examples are certainly random and they’re not the kind of thing that is suddenly going to catapult your career, the point is that there are really easy opportunities to get people’s attention and start building connections that can directly add value to whatever you’re trying to do.
The next time you come across something interesting in your travels, take a moment to share it on Twitter and take another moment to tag the person who created it in your tweet. Do that consistently and you’ll be surprised at what can happen.
And if you want to try it out, why not go ahead and tweet this article and tag me?