Shortly after setting up my Virtual Assistant business, I realised that to make it easier to get clients, I needed to people to follow and share my content. As part of my marketing strategy I needed to create ways that people could interact with my copy.
I already had a Twitter account and was on LinkedIn and Facebook, so that was a start. I set up a Facebook page, and designed a website. Then, I started adding content.

I discovered e-mail lists. Apparently, everyone should have one. It doesn’t have to be big, but these are your hot clients, the ones who are more likely to ‘know, like and trust’ you, the ones more likely to buy from you. So, I signed up to an email provider, and built a subscription page, with a freebie, thinking if I build it, they will come…. They didn’t!

So, I had to ask the tough question, do people not like me? As an introvert, I don’t have a huge number of friends. But when people get to know me in the real world, they usually like me, so I didn’t think that was it, so I did a LOT of research into why I wasn’t getting more followers and subscribers and the reason hit me like a ton of bricks!

THE REAL REASON

I had all this content, I had joined lots of Facebook Groups, but I wasn’t engaging with people. I was what is commonly known as a lurker! I was interested in what people were talking about, but wasn’t really sure how I could contribute anything new and I might post regularly for a few days or a week, but then I would forget, something would get in the way and it might be another month before I posted anything.

No wonder people weren’t hanging around waiting for the next instalment!

If you’ve ever wanted to increase your followers and want to know what I did, then these 7 tips might help!

1. Be creative
Don’t just post the same old, same old every day. Mix it up. Write long blog posts, short posts, use imagery. Try to think about what your prospective clients might want and what your community would find useful. Be humorous, try to find a balance of educate, inform and entertaining type content. Then you can use your analytics to understand what type of content your audience likes best.

2. Help and support
Offer up advice, answer questions, be there for others when they’re having a bad day. That way, if you need some help or need to rant, then they will be there for you too.

3. Build relationships. Take time to talk to people
Don’t just try to sell every time you’re online. Take time to get to know people. What are their interests, hobbies? Is there personal and business stuff you can relate to.

Know your community. Strike up a conversation with someone and be interested in what they have to say. That way, when you do have something to sell, they won’t see you as a spammer, but will look at what you have to offer with interest.

 

4. Provide content – both yours and others
Share your content, but also find valuable articles from other bloggers and brands. Think of the types of information that your community wants to read or watch. You can use a News App such as Feedly, Flipboard, Reddit, Stumbleupon etc. to curate your content.

5. Be consistent
There is no point in being active in a Group or on your Page etc for 2 weeks and then not going online for another month. Make sure you turn up every day. It doesn’t have to be for long. Set an hour in your calendar for social media. Go onto each of your platforms and spend 15-20 minutes, looking for conversations that you can contribute to, post your content and be available.

6. Make sure your freebie is valuable
If people don’t want your freebie, then they won’t sign up to your email list. Do some research, ask you community and find out what they need. Then go create it. Don’t forget to promote it in your Groups when you are invited to do so. Post it on Twitter numerous times and create an image to promote it on Instagram. Also make sure it is easy to find and subscribe on your website.

7. Automate some postings
You haven’t got time to sit posting your content all day. Its much easier to schedule it all in one batch, so why not automate your content, so that when you’re on social media you really have time to interact with your community.

Facebook has its own scheduling facility. Tweetdeck is great for Twitter, you can use Grum for Instagram and Tailwind for Pinterest. Coschedule or Buffer are also useful if you want to do all your scheduling in one place. Personally, I use SmarterQueue.This is an affiliate link, but gives you 30 day free trial, with no obligation at the end of it.

If you want to do well in business nowadays, you need to make sure you have a digital marketing strategy. It’s not enough to just create valuable content, you need to make sure that people know its there.

Be available to others and engage in your groups and on your social media platforms, to build that Know, Like, Trust factor and make sure you’re consistently showing up.

Good luck

If you’ve enjoyed this article, then please feel free to have a nose around the rest. In particular, if you are just setting up your business, this might be of interest Top 10 things I’ve learned about running a business

And if you need support or are feeling a bit demotivated and want to join a facebook group that offers advice and will be there for you if you need it, then why not join up below