Everyone has to start at zero. Whether your business is new or new to that platform, building a social audience from nothing will require some work. Audience building won’t happen overnight. But the work you put in must yield a return, or it’s all for naught. Yes, it’s intimidating to start from zilch and cut through the noise. Every platform is crowded, so what’s going to make your brand stand out? How will you earn those sought after follows and likes?
Expanding your audience isn’t about colossal growth. It’s about smaller victories that will happen when you commit to a well-conceived growth plan. We’re sharing some surefire tips to help you go from zero to social media hero.
Leverage Audience Pain Points in Content
Regardless of your industry, your audience has pain points. You are, of course, the answer to those challenges. But you won’t get many followers if your social media posts are all commercials for how awesome you are. Just like in the real world where no one wants to be around the person who only talks about herself, users don’t follow brands that don’t offer them relevant, interesting content.
So, you’ve got to be subtler. Deliver content, both original and third party, that explores their pain points. For example, if you are a clothing company that sells wrinkle-free, suitcase ready, machine washable clothing, your ideal customer is a regular traveler, female, aged 25 to 45, who has disposable income. Think about that buyer’s pain points: wrinkled clothes that don’t pack well or the expense of dry cleaning. You could then tailor posts around those specific points. Write posts about how to shrink dry cleaning bills or one about never having to iron again.
When users see content that isn’t an advertisement and speaks to an issue they have, they are much more likely to follow, like and even share.
Partner with an Influencer
Social media influencers are critical to growing an audience. They typically are very active on the platforms they choose and have high follow numbers. The key is to find one in your industry that has followers that fit your ideal buyer. Does it work? The data says yes.
- According to Google, 70% of YouTube subscribers trust influencer opinions over other celebrity types.
- 86% of females look to social media for information prior to making a purchase.
- 71% of buyers are more likely to make a purchase when there is a social media recommendation.
So, after you find someone who makes a great ambassador for your brand, reach out to them. Just know that it won’t come free. You’ll need to work out a deal. This could mean free merchandise or actual payment. Depending on your budget, you probably aren’t going to get the top influencer. That’s fine. Find one that fits your brand and budget. With an influencer supporting your profile, you could see substantial growth in a short time.
Get Active in Groups
LinkedIn and Facebook both have groups on just about any topic. Find ones that fit your brand and are likely to have your buyer type. When joining a group, you can’t go in full promotion mode. It’s about sharing content that has substance and offers value. Post original content, ask questions and engage with other group member content. This gets you seen by more profiles so the chance they’ll check out your profile and decide to follow increases.
Make It Easy to Be Followed
Another way to grow your audience is by making sure almost every interaction you have or piece of content you post highlights your profiles. Make it super easy for anyone to follow you. Also, the more someone sees something about your social media accounts, the more inclined they are to click. Here are some ideas:
- Links to your social media profiles should be on every page of your website (either a footer or header).
- Include links to social accounts in your email signature. Include language like “Follow Us for Awesome Content, No Fluff.”
- Follow influencers, stakeholders and thought leaders in your vertical. Each profile gets a notification of your follow. They might decide to check it out and follow you back.
Start Growing Now
If you feel yourself getting frustrated on how to develop your audience, remember that every profile had to start at zero. The most important thing you can do is commit to a strategy and execute best practices like the ones we’ve offered. You also have to be consistent in carrying out these actions.
As your audience increases, you can then adjust your strategy to keep growing—see our in-depth guide on growing audiences here. You’ll also have to keep your current followers, too. Just because an account is a follower today doesn’t mean they will be tomorrow. Keep in mind that social media is always evolving so you should as well. Stay tuned to PopUSocial for more tips and ideas to expand your social media reach.