If You Want Followers Be A Leader

I got that nugget of wisdom from Marty Weintraub @aimclear at this week’s Search Engine Strategies Conference in New York.

That is true in all of life. And it’s true in social media.

One of the top few reasons I go to search engine marketing shows is to expand my reach in Twitter.

I know that every time I actively tweet a search engine show I’m going to significantly increase my followers and overall engagement.

You can see it here:

The 2/6 time period was the Online Marketing Summit in San Diego and the 3/21 is the Search Engine Strategies Show in New York.

My tweets go up. And my mentions go up.

But notice the 1/9 time period. That was the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. I tweeted a lot but I didn’t see a significant increase in mentions. I didn’t know it at the time. But looking back it’s clear. I’m not an expert in consumer electronics. People that follow me don’t follow me for electronics. They follow me for Internet marketing information. That’s where I’m an expert.

Also, here are my follower counts before and after each of those shows:

Before the Consumer Electronics Show: 2166.  After the Consumer Electronics Show: 2167. +1

Before the Online Marketing Summit: 2195. After the Online Marketing Summit: 2247. +52

Before Search Engine Strategies: 2282. After Search Engine Strategies: 2324. +42

I love these followers because they are perfectly targeted. They are in my industry and have an interest in this topic.

Being regarded as an industry expert is a significant part of my marketing strategy. It makes selling my company to people who follow the work I do online much easier.

If you want to gain a following in the social sphere you have to be a leader. You can’t simply retweet what others say (although that is important too). You have to produce content that is original and thoughtful.

That’s how Twitter suddenly becomes difficult. Anybody can come up with 140 characters. A leader will come up with the right 140 characters.


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