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How to Build an Organic Following and Nail Your Social Media Resolutions in 2018

by Zia A., posted 8 months ago
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A new year has arrived. That means three things:

  1. Your gym is busier than an Apple store on the date of a new iPhone release.
  2. Salads and water are the new substitutes for candy canes and pumpkin pie.
  3. It’s time to set some new goals for 2018.

We’ve all got resolutions. If one of yours is to increase your social media following the old-fashioned way (i.e. without shortcuts or shelling out bucks to click farms) then you need to read this post. From consistency to content, patience to profiles, here are 8 ways to build an organic following and come out ahead in 2018.


Choose your networks wisely.

The first step to growing your following on social media is to decide where you’re going to be. You don’t need to be on every social network, just the ones that will give you the best ROI.

How do you choose? Start by considering your audience. Who are they? What networks are they on? Where do they spend their time? If you’re still not sure, watch what the competition is doing, use that as a benchmark and go from there.

Not all networks are created equal. Facebook is currently the #1 social networking site in the world. Of their 2 billion users, Baby Boomers (age 65+) are their fastest growing demographic. YouTube sits at #2 with more than 3 billion searches every month and is a great platform if you have a lot of “how to” content. Twitter remains a formidable platform with international reach (it supports 40 languages and is an ideal choice for many global brands). Instagram, Pinterest, and LinkedIn are three more that come to mind.

organic growth social media 

Maximize your profile potential.

It may not be the sexiest part of social media, but perfecting your profile is an important factor in growing your following. Your profile is your 30-second elevator pitch – but shorter. It gives users a sneak peek into your brand and what you’re all about.

Keep your profiles consistent across platforms. Use keywords that make it easy for people interested in your industry or area of expertise to find you. Pick usernames that are consistent and easy to remember. Use a great image (your logo is always a good option). Don’t forget to include a link to your website. If you want a second opinion check out the Twitter Counter profile checker.

Tell them what they want to hear.

People follow and engage with accounts that share content that they find useful, entertaining, or both. That means consider your audience and then craft your messages with them in mind. Be the account they look forward to each morning, not the one that prompts an eye roll thanks to another self-promoting post.

Keep your content relevant, interesting, and engaging. Balance useful information with posts about your brand. Don’t post random photos of your food or your cat (unless you’re a food blogger or your business involves your favourite four-legged friend). Stay on point.

organic growth social media

This chocolate banana peanut butter pie from @kaleandcaramel is definitely NOT approved for your new year’s diet.

Be consistent.

Don’t be the brand that posts six times in one day and then goes radio silent until next month. Be consistent with your posting schedule. Every platform has a different threshold for what’s appropriate (for instance, on Twitter, the more you post the more engagement you’ll see, whereas on Facebook it can be effective to post just once a day or even less) so be aware. Experiment with the timing of your posts and see when you’re likely to get the most engagement.

organic growth social media 

Interact with your existing followers and with other accounts.

Your social media platforms are just that, social. That means it’s not all about you and your brand. Social media is a symbiosis, a reciprocal environment where the more you interact and engage with other people, the more engagement and interaction you’ll get in return.

Respond to comments, answer questions, follow up. Find new accounts to follow and new posts to like and share. This post on Instagram growth-hacking (titled Follow, Like, Like, Like) gives some interesting advice but the principle is common sense – take the time to show people you’re interested in what they’re posting and they’re likely to show interest back.

Do more of what works.

They say if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. We’re not entirely on board (after all, every good social media manager knows that you need to be constantly evolving and trying new things to stay ahead) but there is something to be said for doing more of what works.

Here’s a simple formula for calculating engagement that applies to most platforms:

(Number of Likes + Number of Comments) / Number of Followers

The result is the percentage of engagement for any particular post. Look for posts where that number is high and then post more of that type of content.

Post content that’s most likely to be shared.

Speaking of content, post content that’s most likely to be shared. What type of content is that? Videos, infographics, and contests top the list. Need other ideas? Check out our blog post on The 6 Types of Social Media Content That Maximize Engagement.

organic growth social media

Enlist professional help.

You’re not in this alone. Tools like Twitter CounterBuffer, IFTTT, and Edgar are just a few of the options that can help you manage (and master) social media. Check them out and see what works for you.


Twitter Counter can help you track your engagement and achieve all of your social media marketing goals in 2018. Sign up for a free trial at