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Good morning internet fans. Ryan Perry. Simple Biz Support. Today is Wednesday October 28th. It’s amazing. November’s almost here. It is Wednesday, therefore it’s Social Media Wednesday, and therefore I do have Sarah Giometti with Provaro Marketing. Good Morning, Sarah!
Sarah Giometti: Good morning, Ryan. How are you?

RP: I am doing good. There is wet stuff outside. I don’t know what this wet stuff is. I haven’t seen it for… I don’t know. How long? But apparently somebody left a sprinkler head on or something because the streets are wet, there sidewalks are wet. It’s crazy.

SG: Yeah. I think just enough for it to… Of course, it’s too early in the morning for me to think. Evaporate. There we go. Just enough for it to all to evaporate.

RP: Yes. Which is fine. For those that don’t know, we’re in northern California. We’re pushing a four year drought now. Something like that. Any little bit of moisture, we get excited these days.

SG: Well maybe it’s because we’re hoping it means we’re going to get a bunch this winter. If we get it, every little bit helps. But if it’s rain now at the end of October, which is not our normal rainy season…

RP: Yeah, I just saw a thing yesterday. Yosemite posted it on Facebook that Death Valley got like three inches in a few hours. It’s like a thousand year storm for them and it just wiped the place out because they don’t get rain like that and just the mud slides and just crazy, crazy. We could probably talk about weather all day because rain is that exciting to us in California. However, people may be more excited about how to grow their following on Twitter. We’ve actually got nine tips that we’re going to give you today to help you grow your Twitter base and what’s really amazing, and I’m going to give away one of the tips, and that is if you just actually post content on a regular basis, people will follow you. And I find that really amazing but it does work. It’s really that simple.

SG: Yeah, it really is and that’s one of the nine tips. So we’re going to start even more basic than that. Fill out your profile.

RP: I can’t leave my egg? I can’t just change the egg or leave the egg up there and have a generic background?

SG: No. No. So if other people see your profile photo as the generic egg photo, they assume, A, you’re not involved and you don’t care about your Twitter account or any of your followers. Or B, you are a troll and/or spam and/or a fake account. So you must have a profile photo. Now, I have two Twitter accounts that I manage. One for my business, one for me. My business profile photo is my logo. My personal one is my professional headshot. So those are pretty much the only two options you should do as a business owner is pick one or the other. If you are your brand, it’s okay to use your headshot. I know Ryan’s is him. He’s chosen to use him as his brand and run one Twitter account whereas I separated the two. So do what you think is best for your brand and your business, but definitely make sure you have a recognizable profile photo. Then you also need to make sure you have the banner and it’s branded properly with the proper message and image and colors and your logo. Especially if you use your headshot for you profile photo. You want to make sure your logo is up there and make sure your website’s there, your bio is there, information about your company. ‘Cause people might look at that, most likely would look at that before they follow you.

RP: I think that’s a really important one because I know I get a lot of people that follow me daily now because I’m very active on Twitter. And when I say very active, I use some automation tools. So my very active is also very efficient and the very first thing I do, I look at the image and then I look at their description. And if it’s not relevant, I will… I’ll send them a thank you for following me, but I will not follow them back.

SG: Right, you want to make sure your information tells people who you are, what you do, so you attract the appropriate followers. The next tip is to tweet more. That’s what Ryan was saying when we started off is putting regular content out there and posting consistently. The recommendation is 10 to 30 times per day and most people have a heart attack when they hear that. However, like Ryan said, we use automation tools. You can use something like Post Planner, or Bundle Post, or Hootsuite. You can use all three to curate content and post it out on a regular basis so you are making it efficient but you’re putting content out regularly even when you’re busy because that allows you to spend your Twitter time to interact live. To retweet people, respond to people, follow back. That kind of stuff. So that you automated your posting, it’s a lot faster for you.

RP: Alright and just a little caveat, you have to use something in order to be effective. Unless you’re totally bored and you just have the time to live on Twitter, but if you’re actually running a business with all the different hats, you have to be efficient. Automation is okay, you just have to make sure it doesn’t look automated. That’s one of the keys.

SG: Right but you want to have a schedule and that’s where automation helps. You kind of want to be predictable because if people like your comment and they kind of know when you post on a regular basis, they’ll know when to jump onto Twitter to find your stuff if they haven’t added you to a list. So posting consistently on a regular basis on a schedule and that’s actually tip three, is using a schedule so that you’re predictable and you make sure you don’t miss times you don’t accidentally have a four hour gap or a six hour gap because you are posting on a regular basis every day all day and using a schedule scheduling tool to make it more efficient. Ah, the fourth tip is using your connections.

SG: Promote your Twitter account on your other social media accounts especially if you’ve done something like you started off with Facebook your Facebook is going really well you have a nice community on there and you decided to jump into Twitter, promote it on Facebook and say, “Hey we’re now on Twitter please come follow us over there.” Because a lot of people… Most people have more than one social media account and some people even if they follow you on Facebook they might actually prefer to live in Twitter and so you can pick up some really active people but you are also leveraging people who already know you like you and follow you and pick them up and add them to your Twitter followers.

RP: Yeah. One of the the things that I thought was interesting is I also learned that you can actually export a user profile. So as an example, if your very active in LinkedIn you can actually export your profile you… Not your profile but the people that are following you and then upload that to Twitter and then they’ll match e-mail addresses and you can send them a request, it says,” Hey, follow me on Twitter.”

SG: Yeah. So there’s a lot of opportunities to-to pick up from your other networks and bring them in and I just used the Facebook example. But the LinkedIn example is a great one too. It’s a teeny bit more complicated but if you can figure out how to do it and follow along there I’m sure Google, they’re step by step instructions and that’s the way to get/gain followers that are valid useful followers to you on Twitter…

RP: Right. And what I really like about that is if you already have a relationship built up in these other social media channels and people aren’t aware that you are on Twitter, it’s a real easy thing for them to go,” Oh, yeah I already know like and trust you I’m going to go ahead and follow you on Twitter, also.”

SG: Right. So tip number five is get involved in Twitter chats. And I know you asked,” What’s a Twitter chat?” A twitter chat is kind of like if you went to a town hall meeting in person for… If people talking around a certain topic, you just doing it virtually on Twitter. It’s usually around the hashtag at a specific date and time, there’s usually a moderator or a handful of moderators that are… They put it on and they’re… They’re interacting with people and the rest of the community you do on when you are in Twitter you do a hashtag search for the specific hashtag used for the Twitter chat and you interact with people in that Twitter chat who are using that hashtag. Some of the rules are when you are starting to get into it obviously follow the moderators who put it on. Don’t promote your services unless you are asked to because this is their event and so you’re really using it for exposure and to gain the new followers so that then you can interact with them on your own Twitter feed. They also might be liked-minded people to you. If it’s a topic that relates to your business, because a bunch of people that you could go look at their profiles and possibly follows so it’s a great way to go to follow people and find followers by participating in it but actually listen but don’t take it over, don’t hijack it.

RP: Right. And you what would be cool, is if twitter had like back in the AOL days where we could go into a chat room. If you could kind of create your own little chat room where you had a link and it took you into a separate account and you just had a constant stream of conversation, that I think that would be kinda cool. But essentially, they don’t have that, so the only way you can follow it, is you really if you are going to to do a chat, Twitter chat, you want to make sure that you have a unique hashtag. So test the hashtag. Test the hashtag out so that you’re… You don’t want to get your information doubled up with somebody else that’s already using that same hashtag and then you got to really make sure you push it out so people know where to find you on Twitter.

SG: Right. Yeah, you definitely want to make sure the hashtag’s never been used before or if it was used maybe one time a long time ago but its not an active hashtag that people are using so just for start join on somebody else’s chat that’s part of the industry and get involved. And that leads into number six to find new followers is follow influencers and retweet their stuff, respond to their tweets and interact with them cause through that you’ll get exposure to their followers who may have interest in you. So by… And you’re also showing the influencers that you’re engaged and interested in them and you’re active on Twitter so that they’ll put, they’ll engage with you as well.

RP: Yeah. And that one’s huge because they already have an audience of like-minded people so it’s really easy to get yourself in front of them and if they’re really cool like post planner, they’ll actually send you free Swag. So I just got a link from them, yesterday, they’re going to send me a free T-Shirt so…

SG: Great.

RP: And I know Mari Smith is following you these days too which is kind of a big win for you.

SG: Yeah, that was when I saw that pop-up. I… Cause she puts out really great content and so I tweet a lot of her content because she puts out really great content which is useful to myself and hopefully my followers. ‘Cause she is… She’s a social media expert specifically on Facebook is her primary place of expertise and she often has rolled out information pretty much the exact same time that Facebook rolls out information. So definitely follow the influencers and interact with them and they’ll follow you back when you can you build you possibly can build a relationship with them.

SG: And that leads us into number seven, which encompasses a few of the others where it’s keep the followers engaged. If someone Retweets you, thank them. Interact with them. Social media’s about being a community. So, if you keep them engaged, you’ll keep the followers you have. And you’ll also pick up followers through other people seeing that you’re thanking people for Retweets, you’re consistently posting, you’re interacting with them, you’re commenting on their posts that you like, things like that. So, you’re showing you’re active and interesting, and you’re putting out good content, you’ll not only keep your followers, but you’ll pick up followers from their following groups. So, that’s a really easy one is just follow all the other steps, and it should work out really well for you.

SG: Eight is, learn from the best. If you’re new to Twitter, and you’re putting all these things in place, you followed an influencer, watch what they’re doing. Watch some of the activity they’re doing, how often they’re tweeting, how often they’re responding to people, what conversations they’re having. Are they doing Twitter chats? Watch what they’re doing, and emulate it. Obviously, don’t copy the content they’re putting out there. But you can emulate their strategy to have an effective strategy, and revise yours to match. And so, see what, find out what tools they’re using, how often they’re tweeting. Ryan and I mentioned… We use Post Planner, we use Bundle Post, Hootsuite. I use another tool that retweets. Any time somebody retweets me, I have an automated thing that somehow retweets it, even when I’m sleeping and busy. So, do some research and see what tools the experts are using, and utilize that to have a really effective strategy, and…

RP: I just want to make one comment there is that, a lot of times, people feel like, “Ah, I don’t want to copy somebody, and I’ve gotta do my own unique thing.” The problem is, you mentioned Mari Smith that, a lot of times, she posts information the same time that Facebook posts information. She knows what’s going on well ahead of when we do, because she’s got the insider secret. She knows if there’s something new that’s rolling out. She knows about it months ahead of time, because she’s probably part of the testing, and the beta testing, and all of that. So, they’ve got a heads up. So, by the time you try and figure it out, it could be three months down the road, and it’s old news. So it’s okay to follow other people. Obviously, like Sarah said, put your own spin on it. You don’t want to copycat somebody, but these people got the inside track, so follow them.

SG: Yeah. And I’m saying emulate their strategy, and see what kinds of things they’re doing… Not copycat what they’re posting out, every tweet, everything that they do. But since we’re about… We’re pretty much out of time, let’s quickly do number nine. Promote your Twitter handle in other places. Put it on your business card, any print material that you might have. If you’ve got a storefront, put it the front window, or on the checkout counter. Put it in other places, asking people to follow you on your different social media platforms… So that as they’re getting your material, or in your store, they have an opportunity to learn that you’re on Twitter, and follow you from there. Maybe offer them some discount for following you… For the first-time followers, or something like that, to get them engaged.

RP: Yeah. And two of the places that I use it, I love digital ’cause it’s easy to click, is my email signature. I have all my different social media accounts, and then also, my YouTube channel, ’cause that’s a big one for me. All my YouTube videos and the description, I have a link to my Twitter account.

SG: Yeah. So, think outside the box a little bit for where you put it, but put it in a place where… We’re digital, so having your email signature makes a lot of sense. You just want to be careful that your email’s not super long, or image heavy. People will get picky about that when you’re going back and forth… But thinking outside the box, a way to put it out there on places other than on Twitter itself.

RP: All right, perfect. Well, with that, we are out of time on today’s episode of “Social Media Wednesday.” Those are nine really basic simple tips that you can start using today to grow your following on Twitter. Sarah, as always, I appreciate your time, and we’ll see you next week.

SG: Thanks, Ryan.