Engaging Online Followers*

by Kendra Anderson Practice breeds routine and routine breeds consistency

When people ask me what the golden ticket is to increasing their online following and getting brand recognition, the answer is always, consistency.

Consistency is the key to increasing your followers within your online community and bringing awareness to your brand. The key is not just increasing the amount of followers, but also gaining engaged followers. You don’t want a silent following that just has top of the mind awareness of your brand. You want them invested enough to propel them into action and engage them in what you’re doing.

First, let’s get a few things out of the way … in bullet points. I must tell you that bullet points make my heart happy:

•    * Take a deep breath. You’re doing a great job and you’re enough. Yes, running a  non-profit/ministry and wearing a million hats IS overwhelming.  Remember to extend grace and kindness towards yourself.

•    * Work with what is available to you today. Trying to work outside of your capacity, can and ultimately will result in shame and failure.

•    * At the end of the day, God truly has everything under control. Our job is to show up, say “YES”, and have obedience that is accompanied with intentional hard work. Working hard without intention, is a waste of time.

* Followers and communities can be extremely picky. You can’t make everyone happy.  You can’t target everyone nor should you want to. You want people who will whole-heartedly stand with you in what you’re doing and be fully invested. Pray that God will enlarge your territory to the RIGHT people.  You’ll need to exercise patience because it may look different than you had originally envisioned.

•    * The principle is the same, but the methods will look different for each of us. Find and create a routine that works best for YOU. This will require research and trial and error. Take a deep breath, embrace the suck, and go to figuring it out.

•    * Please don’t purchase another online course guaranteeing thousands of followers within (x) amount of time.  There are countless free resources available.

•    * They say the early bird gets the worm”, but I like to saythe planner gets the worm and dessert too”

•    * I have found eating a cookie a day keeps a ton of stress away.

Discipline over motivation

Inspiration is extremely beneficial to our personal life, business life, workflow, and end goals. We need to be disciplined to not be easily inspired and motivated to steer away from the consistent routine we’ve worked to establish. Everyone will have their opinions on how you should establish your routine. While their advice can propel you, be intentional about what and how it inspires you.

Here is a very brief outline of what I’d give to my clients – in bullet points, of course.  I can only assume that not many of us have time to read a long post. Lord knows there is plenty of laundry, dinner, working out, shower taking, donut eating, and most likely Facebook posting vying for our valuable time.

I’m very much looking forward to sharing at the upcoming September Leadershare. I assure you that I’ll be going in-depth about the following:

•    *How setting up a routine and scheduling your post will be your best friend! I’d suggest scheduling out a week in advance to avoid scrambling around for content. Figure out how many times you are going to post in a given time frame. Gather the information and schedule it out ahead of time. This will pay off.

o  Here is a cute calendar to print off and use

Hootsuite  + Buffer are great for scheduling

•    * Establish and know your target audience. Research which platforms your target audience is using and master those. It’s not mandatory to use every platform available. Be reasonable. If your audience is on Instagram and they love your blog post, put your efforts there.

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Pinterest

Snapchat

Google+

Blog

Newsletter

Newsletter (2)

•   * Figure out your vision and mission for online marketing as well as 4-5 things you want your audience to receive from your post. Basically, you’re setting up a target to aim at. Without a target, you’re just throwing random information out there. This could hurt your following. People like consistency.

for example : If Nike started posting material about farm animals and DIY wedding décor, they’d loose a huge amount of their following. You follow Nike because you want to look good while working out. You follow Martha Stewart for DIY projects and your local farm for details on what their chickens ate for breakfast.

      Know what your audience wants and give it to them. If you are looking to enlarge your donors, provide information that shows where their contributions are being used and will be going in the future. Inspire them as well as assuring them their contributions are making a difference.

 •    * For the love, invest in having an aesthetically pleasing online brand. This is SO very important. You want your online brand to be polished and established, not mom and pop. There are endless (free and stress-free) resources out there that could help you establish an aesthetically pleasing brand.

     o  Learn tips + tricks about phone photography – Jana Williams

o  If you have a camera, take a class on how to use it – either online or at your local camera shop.

o  Take advantage of free stock photography over at Unsplash

o  FontCandy and VSCO are great apps for editing

o  Contact Beth Bradford for her awesome graphic and web design skills

o  Less is always more. Always.

 This only scratch’s the surface, but I hope it has encouraged you and given you some insight. Feel free to shoot me an email if you have any questions as well  as tips + tricks that have helped you! We can learn something from everyone.

 

I look forward to meeting all of you at Leadershare!