From time immemorial, mankind’s eternal quest has been for followers. People wanted followers for their religious ideas, their false notions, scientific theories and even world conquests. The world might be a simpler place no, but that desire remains the same. The buzzword is these days is social media and getting social media followers is critical for making it a viable business option. To extract economic gains from social media, to increase brand awareness or to expand customer base, presence of followers is necessary, and to achieve this objective, you need to strategize how you harness the multiple handles on social media, and their unique benefits.
When you look at some of the recent successful social media stars such as BB ki Vines, or Instagram stars like Ashish Chanchalani, or YouTube stars like Marcus Brown Lee, you need to take a step back and analyse how exactly they got here. Even fashion and life style blogs such as Popxo on Instagram all follow a kind of similar pattern. Gaining social media followers requires planning and timely execution. You ideally need to identify first the target markets you’re going to target. Preferably, identify a niche that you can easily capture, compared to a big market that is heavily dominated. Once the market is identified, you need to select the various social media handles that will easily connect to this medium. A simple example is interlinking the different channels to redirect traffic to a single source. If you have a blog or a page, it needs to have a YouTube handle for video content, must be linked to Facebook and twitter to redirect traffic, there need to be micro posts with image to go along with on Instagram, and is possible link it to Quora and Pinterest. Each of these channels has different campaigns that you can use to gain followers.
When targeting followers, an important point is to have organic growth before inorganic growth. Good content at regular intervals in the initial stages is very important. Rajnikant vs CID Jokes is a Facebook page with over 14 million likes. It simply started as a joke sharing page in the early days of Facebook. Now its an entertainment and media website, often collaborating to promote upcoming movies and shows. The path in between is where strategy comes into play. You do not want to start paid promotions before word of mouth promotions, or ‘learn to walk before you run.’ Once you have enough followers on a single platform, you can then aim to capture another platform, as then you have a loyal base to work with. Identify which platform your target group is most comfortable with and target that platform first. Ustraa, a men’s accessory brand started out via Instagram marketing, and then expanded into other channels. Further, the kind of content you create will have a huge influence on what you start with as your initial platform. Most of the famous vine stars in India started out as Instagram stars. After reaching close to half a million or million followers, they started YouTube channels as revenue model on YouTube is more lucrative, and linked their Instagram post to YouTube. At the same time, they started doing paid promotions on Facebook, because by now they had a large enough organic reach. As a user if you see a sponsored post with just a few thousand likes or reactions, you are likely to skip it. People generally like to watch what other people are watching.
The idea is to efficiently utilise social media channels, at different stages of the product or brands life cycle. There are thousands of content creators and aspiring Instagram and YouTube stars, the successful ones will always be those with good content and strategic usage of social media.