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iClick Media's guide on "How to increase your Twitter following?"

It is easy to setup an account on Twitter and post twits. Within minutes, you should be getting followers, if your content is what your followers want to read. However, to achieve critical mass is not easy. Getting from zero to 10 and to 100 is fairly simply. To get to 1,000 or even 10,000? Now that requires skill, patience and content.

Before we even go to the tips, let's be aware that numbers is but numbers. Chasing numbers (especially Twitter followers) can be futile. In fact, many accounts that you see whom have thousands and thousands of followers, may not actually have that many followers.

On the other hand, if you can get real followers on Twitter, that can really improve your optimisation efforts on Google and Yahoo. Read the post on Search and Social marketing merging together here.

Below are some basic tips to increase your following on Twitter.

1. Only tweet and share information on things you have a deep understanding of. Your knowledge in that field can result in exponential growth (through Re-Tweet or RT in short). Your users or followers will recognise your specialised knowledge and skill.

2. True reflection of who you are versus your Twitter account. If you are tweeting about soccer stars in Singapore, choose a name such as @SoccerStarsSingapore. Don't expect reliable soccer information to come out from say a @BonJoviFans do you? Choose names that are short and to the point. As with uniform resource locaters (URLs), the shorter the name or phrase, the less tendency users have of having a typo error.

3. Account Information. 1 of the most important things to fill up is the bio under your account name. If you missed that out, other users might think you're not the real thing. Even if they think you might be, without the bio information, you are missing out on a huge chunk of potential eyeballs. Brand value? No good.

4. Use Twitter, share information and follow people. Twitter is not 1-dimensional. Do not expect 10 following but 10,000 followers. It just doesn't happen that way. You have to be engaged on Twitter, follow people, read about them, re-tweet those messages and etc. Get involved and your followers will follow you if they think you are sincere. Do. Not. Spam.

5. What to do with complaints? With social media such as Facebook and Twitter, you can never avoid a customer complaint. However, having said that, never ever ignore that complaint as though you've never seen it. Your customers will remember. They in return will make sure you regret not "seeing" that complaint. Instead, take the complaint offline and address their issues. They will be happy. You will be happy. They will spread the good words about how you manage their issue. Everyone's happy.

6. Don't bombard links to everyone. You've seen many accounts such as #thenewpaper or #cnn tweeting relentlessly on your twitter. They have the authority and users actually like reading the latest news, instantly. However, your account is not a news agency nor a publisher. Don't keep on spamming links to your site. Instead, you can tweet about non-business tweets such as your lunch, about the weather and etc. Your followers are human beings too. They appreciate your tactfulness. ;)

7. Links, links and more links. Yes, occasionally you may post links to your own website. Besides doing that, you can add links from other websites that you find are related to your tweets and generally are light-hearted and interesting. Stick around in Twitter and don't post and run.

8. Register and that's it. Do not just register for an account, tweet a "Hello world" and leave it dormant for months. Users are not likely to trust tweets from such accounts. Besides, how do you grow a Twitter account when you're not twitting?

9. Professional Twitter Marketers. If you've engaged professional agencies to handle your Twitter account, make sure you trust them. Give them information to tweet. Work hand-in-hand with them. It is never 1-dimensional nor 2-dimensional. It should be multi-faceted. Get your staff to work together with the agency.

10. Being retweeted. Always remember that being retweeted gets you more followers, tweeting loses them. Try to spread content that is interesting so your message gets re-tweeted.

iClick Media