Four simple steps to increase your Twitter followers

You’ve just created your Twitter account and are raring to go. Your list of contacts has been uploaded and you have begun following your favorite accounts. But do you still feel you’re missing something? Why doesn’t that follower count go beyond a crawl? Fret not! Here are a few simple steps to set the ball rolling.

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  1. Write a strong bio: What a lot of people miss out on is writing a strong bio. Your bio is what attracts people to follow you on Twitter. When users are browsing through hundreds of Twitter accounts, you just get a second or two to get their attention. Your Twitter bio is like condensing your CV to within 160 characters. So, make sure that you give it your best.

Pro-tip: Ensure that your Twitter Bio explains your interests, has keywords that touch upon your profession or expertise, and has a link to your website/blog. If you’re still feeling stuck, this Twitter Bio Generator might just help you generate your Twitter Bio.

  1. Follow your competitor’s followers: Search for your competitors’ twitter accounts or accounts that focus on similar topics/interests such as yours. Then, check out their followers and follow them one by one. The logic is simple: these people have followed a Twitter account because their interests match. So, if your Twitter bio accurately reflects your interests and expertise, there is a very high probability that they will follow you back when they see your following notification! Remember to avoid obvious spam accounts and those that don’t seem to reflect your interests.

Pro-tip: Now, think about why you didn’t follow certain accounts and then revisit your own Twitter bio. Will potential followers ignore following you because your description is unclear/sounds spammy? Would you follow someone who has a similar description as yours? Take a step back and revise your Twitter bio again if needed.

  1. Build an impressive Twitter feed: Remember that apart from your own tweets and retweets, the content of whom you follow determines what will be seen in your Twitter feed. So, pick and choose whom you follow. If you begin following random Twitter accounts, your Twitter feed will be all over the place and might put off potential followers.

Pro-tip: You can choose to pin a tweet to the top of your Twitter feed. Choose this very judiciously – most people barely go down more than a scroll, and your pinned tweet is your best chance to get potential followers hooked on to your profile.

  1. Engage with your prospects: What goes around comes around. One of the best ways to increase engagement on your Twitter feed is to engage with all those who choose to engage with you. If someone retweets/likes any of your tweets, go back to check their account and retweet/like tweets that might be useful for your audience. Make it a point to follow back most people who follow you, but remember to avoid spam and irrelevant accounts. Read point 3 again to maintain your focus.

Pro-tip: Retweet interesting and insightful content from influencers in your domain and remember to add a comment to explain why someone should check that out. You’ll pick up more followers if people begin to perceive you as a curator of good content.

That’s all for now! Go and try out these steps right away. Do not forget to add your comments below to let us know if you found these tips to be useful.

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Three amazing free tools for start-ups

Start-ups typically scout for seed funding and angel investors to fuel their growth dreams. But until that happens, most gigs function on shoe-string budgets. It is during this phase that entrepreneurs are on the lookout for free but effective tools that help in facilitating their operations.

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There are thousands of tools out there, and finding the right one for your needs can be a bit daunting. But then, that’s what JBR (Just Being Resourceful) is for! We’ve enlisted a few really effective ones below so that you can not only work hard but work smart!

  1. MailChimp for Email Marketing
    E-mails are a great way to reach out to your audience, keep them updated on your new product launches, or to deliver your weekly newsletter. MailChimp is a wonderful tool that allows you to streamline your email campaigns.

The free version allows uploading a member contact list of up to 2000 members and lets you automate and analyze up to 12,000 mails a month! The fine print says that you can send up to 2000 emails in any 24-hour period. MailChimp’s Forever Free plan packs in a lot of stuff for a free offering. Check out all the details here.

Pro-tip: Always start with a free plan and scale up if needed. For users who send email campaigns to a large user base on an infrequent basis, their Pay As You Go Plan proves to be a useful package.

  1. Hootsuite for Social Media Management
    Managing social media efficiently is indispensable for any fast-growing start-up. It’s not just about being present on social media, but managing it well enough to create an impact and drive traffic and business leads. Hootsuite is a personal favorite and a very versatile tool to help you schedule your updates across various time zones on three social media channels of your choice absolutely free!

You can schedule up to 30 social media updates at a time for free on any given day. What this means is that once some of your scheduled updates have been sent out, you can schedule more for the rest of the day! Hootsuite allows you to attach media, schedule similar updates across different channels, and even tag people/accounts on Facebook and Twitter. Hootsuite is a great tool for several other purposes, but I’ll elaborate on that in a later blog post.

Pro-tip: Try out Hootsuite’s auto-scheduling feature. This feature is available in the compose message window, and it helps in automatically scheduling your updates for optimal impact.

  1. SurveyMonkey for Customer Feedback and Research
    It goes without saying that any business that doesn’t listen to its customers is bound to see failure. Customer feedback is of utmost importance for any business, and SurveyMonkey is a very well-known and great tool for you to launch those surveys and keep tabs on your customers’ raves and rants.

Use this survey tool to upgrade and improve your services, understand user sentiment, conduct market research, and much more! SurveyMonkey lets you create surveys, share them via multiple media platforms, get responses, and turn them in to actionable insights! The basic free plan gets you up to 10 questions and free 100 responses per survey.

Pro-tip: Remember to check out the various professional-looking templates available in their free plan.

That’s it for now! These are just three of the innumerable free tools available out there. While I plan to enlist a few more such tools, I’d like to hear from you on what tools you think can be very useful for start-ups. Enter your thoughts using the comments section below, and I’ll cover them in my next blog post on free tools for start-ups.