In our last blog post I wrote about a study we did that looked into the efficacy of using an automated Twitter direct message to draw new followers to a website. Our study showed that the use of such a message did not improve website traffic. In this post I will discuss two better options available to draw Twitter followers to your website. These tips came to us from both our study participants as well as our own experience.
Use a tweet to thank for the follow: Everybody loves their ego scratched once in a while and nothing does it better than a quick tweet to your audience welcoming a new follower. A quick read of their profile can make it that much more special. Something like:
Welcome new follower @Susan_Smith! A big fan of cats and BBQs! Who isn’t?
Follow this up with a call to action soon afterwards while they are still feeling “warm and fuzzy” about you.
Hey @Susan_Smith, did you get a chance to sign up for our free newsletter? We got new info coming soon!
Use your new followers to drive old followers to your site: One thing we’ve learned is that nobody likes to feel like they are being left out of a party. Take for instance that subscriber who signs up for your newsletter over and over and over again every time you post some valuable information on your Twitter feed. Whether they are concerned that they got dropped from the mailing list or that they think there is a new special letter out, the repeated signups are driven by an irrational worry that they are missing useful insights or information.
One piece of advice we give our clients is that on their landing page they should give a visitor the option to supply their Twitter ID during the signup process. If the visitor does, we use some web magic to have our client automatically follow them. We also recommend that at some point they throw in a public tweet (as opposed to a message, since you can’t count on the return follow) that says something along the lines of:
Hey @Trader88, thanks for signing up for our newsletter! Nice timing, we got a big announcement on Tuesday!
or even better, after a you send out some valuable information:
Hey @Trader88, thanks for signing up for our newsletter! See our fantasy football tips for last Sunday? Sure you won this week with that info!
You will be surprised how many visits this will drive to your site. Some may be those Nervous Nellies like I discussed before, but most will be folks who don’t like being out of the know.
Does implementing these two tips involve more time and effort than slapping together an automated DM? Absolutely. Nothing comes easy. These two tips will not only provide more traffic to your site than your automated DM, they will also get more folks subscribed to your letters.