There has been a lot of conversation recently around increasing your social media followers on G+. In May we relaunched our BritMums G+ page and wanted to share how we organically built up our followers. Part of our growth was as a result of being chosen to be on a “featured” page presented to new G+ users – we were chosen because our network has more than 4,000 bloggers that represent 7,000+ blogs and because we have an active blog that was recently ranked #1 in parent blog influence by EBuzzing.
While Google doesn’t feature individual bloggers on that page, there are other techniques you can use to grow followers. We hope you can glean some ideas from what has worked for us to use in building followers in your individual networks.
- First, do not be tempted to buy followers. Most bloggers we know wouldn’t even consider engaging in this practice – buying followers to increase your number. There has been lots of talk about this and we want to make clear that BritMums does not support or engage in this behaviour. Full stop.
- Decide what is different about the social media platform in which you want to gain followers, and base your strategy around this. We decided that Hangouts were one of the most interesting features on G+, and started to create content using this technology. For example, we created Hangouts after some of our most popular BritMums Live sessions, you can see some examples here, here and here.
- Create an compelling profile. This is key and should not be ignored. Clearly tell people who you are and why they should pay attention to you. With BritMums, we highlight that we’ve been a pioneer in the parent blogging space since 2008. Our blog and social networks reflect the voice of influential parent bloggers. Lots of people want to hear what our network is doing, and that includes G+ profiles that are not mums or dads!
- Don’t be shy, ask people directly to follow you. We heavily use all our social media channels (we have 11k+ followers on Twitter) to promote our new G+ page and invite people to see unique content there. We are happy to see so many of our Twitter followers on G+ too.
- Be a pioneer and one of the first to engage a new platform, and then help others to do the same. We created a G+ Master Class to help bloggers quickly get to grips with G+. We held G+ workshops at BritMums Live, the UK’s biggest and most influential blogger conference. We’re always trying new techniques, planning competitions, and generally supporting others on social networks. People like our friendly, helpful attitude and in return they follow us back and recommended us to others.
- Ask people with similar profiles to share their Circles with you. This is a quick way to discover others you might want to follow, and to quickly add them.
- Be an influencer. People want to follow people who they feel are influential, so they can be in touch with varied opinions. How do you become an influencer? The best steps are to create a plan (plot out your moves and how are you spending your social media time, including analyzing what kind of content gets the most traction for you), be prepared to devote time to it every day, follow other influencers and learn from what they’re doing, and engage with your followers and commenters.
- Take the time to network with other influencers. This can be bloggers, networks, or even companies that create social media networks! When influencers recommend you or your page, it can have a snowball effect (something we’ve seen to dramatic effect). We have been lucky enough to be featured by Google as a page to follow, and this, combined with our other strategies, has helped to rapidly increase our followers.