I have just reached a milestone on Twitter; 20,000 followers. This has taken years of hard work, connecting online and building a social media community that want to listen to what I have to say, making me a thought leader in my industry.

Social media is such a powerful marketing platform and businesses are starting to realise how to fully utilise each social network however, social media WILL NOT fix a broken business. You need a strategy in place, that compliments your business goals, and your overall marketing strategy.

If you are looking to build your social media community, you have come to the right place. Here are my top 10 tips.

  1. Stay Brand Consistent

It is so important that your biography and visuals on each social network are consistent with your website. Having a well written bio, that is the same for every social network and in line with what your website says about your business is crucial.

  1. Blogging

Blogging, or Vlogging is a great way to build your social media community, whilst turning your and your business into a credible, thought leader in your industry. I post two articles a week on my website and I also contribute to Social Media Today and Business2Community. This means that I get a lot of mentions on social media through people sharing my content. Think of platforms you can use to distribute your content online, just like I have with Social Media Today, and Business2Community.

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  1. Spelling and Grammar

Misspelling words happens to everyone (even me). Always make sure your social media content is grammatically correct before posting. Posting with spelling and grammar mistakes can affect your credibility online.

  1. Follow to be Followed

With Twitter especially, it is important that you don’t just focus on getting people to follow you, but you also focus on following people yourself. It is difficult to get masses of people to read your content online, if you aren’t will to do the same.

  1. Engage in a Two Way Conversation

Since the release of my book Think #Digital First, my social media activity has hit an all time high and I make it a priority to respond to everyone who tweets me, even if it is to say hi, or for business advice. Make sure you use your social media accounts as a customer service outlet, encouraging two way conversations.

  1. Be Personable

Showing your social media community that there is a real person behind a social media account is extremely important as people, buy from people. Start conversations to build trust and credibility. You don’t have to talk about your personal life, but show your community that what they say matters.

  1. Network

It is important to engage in two way conversations with your already existing followers but what about your target market that is yet to follow you on social media? Find Twitter chats and Facebook Groups to get involved with, to increase your online following.

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  1. Be Professional

It is important to be personable, but also professional. By this I mean don’t post on social media about your drunken antics or family drama (unless this is part of your brand’s identity). Being professional allows for potential customers to respect you as a business and someone they want to spend their hard earned cash with.

  1. Quality Over Quantity

Don’t just share information for the sake of sharing. It needs to be quality, valuable content that is suitable for your audience. This is one sure fire way to increase your online following if your content is of a high standard and worth sharing

  1. Share, Share and Share

How many of you signed up to Twitter in 2010, sent one tweet then didn’t touch Twitter again until recently? The key is to create content regularly so that you always have something to post about whether it’s your latest blog, industry news or an event you are attending.

How are you going to build your social media community?

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