Don’t fall for the numbers game

Don't fall for the numbers gameYou will be pitched today and most days by an agency that will tell you that they can get you x number of followers in x number of days. They probably can. Don’t fall for it!

I’ve just spent hours fixing a client’s Twitter feed that was the result of this disastrous way of thinking. Their feed talked about just about everything except the industry that they’re in. A set of spam followers were blasting their feed with marketing message after poorly-worded marketing message. Most of their followers seem to have been added through an auto-follow but hadn’t posted in years. They had countless more followers that had relinquished their accounts to spammers who created so much irrelevant noise on their feed that it was nearly impossible to hear the real conversation.

Many agencies, in a quest for ROI to show their clients, have locked on to number of followers and people being followed as the only number to pursue. Granted, that is an easy ROI to strive for, just set an auto-follow, find other users who also auto-follow and load ’em up.

A more difficult number to promise a client is that they will have x number of relevant conversations on any given day, that they will share compelling content that sets them up as a leader in their industry, that their target demographic will seek them out because of their presence on social media, and that current clients will connect with and share their content with their friends and colleagues.

On my client’s behalf, I dumped nearly 2,000 followers from their list. Not a single one of those followers noticed. I joined conversations on the feeds of dozens of other organizations in their industry. I asked questions, we made connections, and many of those connections responded with a follow and a RT of our content. We shared ideas, content, and relationships – and will continue to do so.

Why would you not want to follow and be followed by people in your industry? Your conversation should be with people who speak the same language, people who have something to offer. On your page/feed, it’s a conversation that you initiate and lead.

If your target market is 40-something, nail-polish loving, prissy-primping females, why would you even care if 16 year old gear-heads follow you? Why would you cast your net out to gamers and hikers and manly men? Have a conversation with the people who are in line with your image and industry. If you are in the beauty industry, you wouldn’t attend a networking event for truck drivers – what in the world would you talk about –  what color nail polish goes with a Model 587 Peterbuilt truck? It’s the same in social media. Make your page/feed, the networking event for people in your own industry. Find the people who you are interesting and who are interested in what you have to say. They are the ones that will share your content, like your page, and recommend you to their friends.

Which looks better?

100% of your 10 followers engage with you every day and you are so busy having a conversation with them that content flows easily from the discussions

or

only 10% of your 100 followers try to engage with you every day but you’re too busy trying to find varied content to attract more followers that you don’t have time to connect with that 10%?

Either way it’s 10 people, but doesn’t the first scenario just feel more right?

Who is your target and what conversation can you have with them today?