What do you do with Twitter followers?

thM89HLMO9My heart still skips a beat every time I pick up a new follower. As my tablet dings, in succinct harmony with my phone and then desktop computer, I know what has just occurred. It really could be called magic, when you think about it. To have the ability to catch someone’s attention, from a killer post or through a strategically placed hashtag is really tough. Be proud of your work or of that fantastic marketing team you created. You are in an elite group that has few members. Now what?

Before I proceed, please question if you are actually getting followers. This is the number one result that must be received from your tweeting efforts. Followers. Getting them is an intricate strategy that needs to be designed, repeated and quantified. Are you working from a plan, strategy or tweeting whenever you feel like it? Your feelings don’t dictate business behavior, strategy does.

Once you start picking up followers, then what? Well, you could just keep tweeting to them; small whispers of reminders that you are out there or you do what you are supposed to do. Move them down the assembly line. Build a relationship that may eventually turn into business. You cannot do that with 140 characters. Well, you cannot do that if you are trying to create a meaningful relationship, one that goes beyond the social media world.

Followers need to be turned into leads. Leads turn into clients. Clients turn into business. Use the three steps below to transition followers to leads and you are on your way to doing something with those Twitter followers.

Thank them

By showing appreciation, in a small way, for taking the time to actually start following you, you establish the beginnings of a one:one relationship. We recommend making this templated (you still don’t know if they are worth any of your time), yet personable. Now is the time to dust off your brand commitment work and infuse those 140 characters with as much personality as possible. Yes, you could say “thank you” and be done with it. You could also say it in the way that represents you…. “From our family to yours, thanks for following us.” Do you see how a few, strategic words create a different impact?

Get them on your newsletter

Connecting them to more personable channels of communication is always the goal. This will help build a relationship much more deeply. Your newsletter, that announces company information, promotions, blogs, letters from the CEO or information begins the process of helping them understand you and your organization more deeply. It also ensures they are seeing you in another way. Directly reach out to your Twitter follower with a request to sign up for your newsletter that will give them more information on you, your company and your brand.

Reach directly out to your top follower every month

Twitter has some great analytics. I bet many of you have never even seen them and you know what, they are free. So, if you are not getting or reading your analytics report, you need to start today. This will give you all sorts of information, yet most important it will show you your largest follower. Your largest follower is large for a number of reasons, that you will start seeing as you track this each month. Spending your time trying to convert them; whether they could be a direct source of business or a large referral source, is time well spent. Look at these as the best cold calls you could ever make. Start by reaching out to make a connection via Twitter. Scheduling a consultative meeting where you can get to know each other a bit more will help you further assess them. If they are unresponsive, don’t give up. Generally these large followers can easily be found via the internet, whether through their own company or another social media site. Do some investigation, use your connection from Twitter as your opener and try to get an hour meeting scheduled where you can get to know them more.

Getting ahead of yourself in the lead generation process will just trip you up and potentially loose great clients. With proper systemization, you will never skip a single, necessary step on your way to building your lead pool.

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