Shweiki Media has teamed up with Kevin Knebl—international speaker, author, trainer, coach and an authority on social media and marketing—to present a webinar on how to use Follow Friday (or #FF) to grow a Twitter list and increase engagement.
This webinar is part of a series from Knebl. To be fully versed in the potential of Twitter, one should watch the other webinars he has done in this series about understanding the basics of the platform, setting up an account, establishing a 15-minute daily routine, and using tools like Hootsuite and Twellow, which make social media sites easier to use. The links are below:
In a previous webinar, Knebl recommends looking at people that are engaging with content and tweets on a daily basis to acknowledge and publicly thank them. This results in greater good will, more views, more likes, more shares, more retweets–all generally good things. This basic concept is dubbed the Pay-it-Forward Business Model: doing the right thing and trying to help people by spreading the love. Most people do not need any additional stress.
Follow Friday Explained
On Fridays on Twitter, there is a phenomenon called Follow Friday. One simply types a tweet starting with a hashtag (#), followed by FF so it appears as #FF. (It does not matter if it is lowercase or uppercase.) Once that is done, a hashtag has been created in the tweet, and that is used for searching with Twitter’s search engine. Anything typed into the search engine searches 300 million Twitter users worldwide for any use of that word.
For example, if “Austin” was typed into the search engine, it is going to search every single tweet there has ever been on Twitter for the use of the word Austin. It is also going to find anyone whose Twitter account user name is Austin. This is all in chronological order.
Now, if a hashtag is placed in front of the word Austin (#Austin), Twitter is going to search for anyone who put a hashtag in front of that word. This becomes a very powerful tool to use when monitoring news items, sporting events, or almost any scenario that people want a thread related to a particular subject or title. Using hashtags strategically is a really simple thing to do and it is a really effective thing to do.
Using the Follow Friday Hashtag
Follow Friday over the years has created its own hashtag. If #FF is searched for, it is going to pull up every single tweet that has that hashtag in it. On Fridays, many people pay it forward. They publicly encourage others to follow specific people.
For example, if someone wanted people to follow a specific person, they would start the tweet with #FF, then that person’s name, starting with @. Basically, it’s just putting the person’s username after the FF. Once the tweet is sent out, all of the user’s followers would see that in their news feed, promoting that others should follow these users. This is a massive compliment because the Twitter user’s followers are being informed that they should follow these people. These people realize they are being promoted to an entire network.
How to Use Follow Friday Strategically
Strategic is in no way meant insincerely, manipulative, slickly or salesy. Everything Knebl teaches is sincere, authentic, honest and heart-centered communication. If there are certain people that one would like to deepen a relationship with, a very easy way to pay it forward is to promote them to one’s followers on Twitter on Fridays.
One way to do this is go into the notifications tab on Friday morning and go back seven days. A user could then look for anyone who has been promoting them. If they wanted to create a deeper relationship, a tweet with #FF and their name after it would show up in their notifications. They are probably going to think very well of the person promoting them. Look for users favoriting and commenting, and specifically people promoting tweets to their network.
Using Hootsuite, as mentioned in a previous video, one should start the tweet with #FF and either put the names or people or take it to another level. (For example, “#FF Gotta love these tweeps! ツ” Tweeps meaning tweepeople, or Twitter users.) One should make it similar to a natural speech pattern. Not only is this saying follow these people, but also shows love to these people. Just make sure it is comfortable. Results may vary.
One could also use a combination of Twitter and Hootsuite to look at who has been promoting. Hootsuite will auto-populate the Twitter handle. After adding additional names, Hootsuite will tell how many characters remain. This is a way to thank people, recommend people to follow, and basically spread the love.
After sending the Tweet to followers, the people mentioned in the tweet see in their notification folder that they were being talked about. These people will feel better about the promoter for promoting them to their network. This is rooted in creating, nurturing and deepening relationships.
It is one thing to have a lot of followers on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc. It is a whole other thing for one to have followers that engage with them, do business with them and refer business to them. There are a lot of people who are in a social media popularity contest, just wanting to get more followers. But if one’s content is low quality, it does not matter how many followers they have. It is preferable to have fewer followers but higher engagement among those followers than massive amounts of followers and still be broke. One should go for the ROI. Rather than being enamored by numbers, one should be enamored by engagement. Engagement is a five-dollar word for conversation. People that engage ultimately do business or refer business.
As a recap, one should use Follow Friday to create, nurture and deepen relationships with whomever they would like to deepen a relationship with on Twitter. A good start is specifically using the people retweeting content. This can effectively be done with anyone.