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7 proven ways to get more Twitter followers

I’ve learned a lot about the Twitter algorithm by study, trial, and error. Now I’m teaching what I’ve learned to help you get more Twitter followers too.

Ed Latimore
Ed Latimore
Writer, retired boxer, self-improvement enthusiast

The more followers you have on Twitter, the easier it is for you to promote yourself and your content.

When your followers like, comment, and retweet your tweets, their audience sees them in their Twitter feed as well. Of course, some of them will follow you.

When they engage with your tweets, the whole cycle starts again, leading to a growth pattern that is more exponential than linear.

I’m not gonna lie to you about Twitter.

There are no “quick hacks” or “simple tricks” to magically get more followers overnight. However, there are a few things you can do that will make more people your followers in a much smaller amount of time.

Before I tell you how to get more followers, let me tell you why you should listen to my advice. After all, there are several articles that come up by big companies or brands. What do I know?

Why listen to me about growing a Twitter following?

Why should you listen to what I have to say about getting followers on Twitter?

Because I have skin in the game. I practice what I preach and I walk what I talk. I have more Twitter followers than many celebrities and politicians, yet I am neither.

My Twitter account is proof that I know what I’m talking about.

  • I currently have 180k+ followers
  • My tweets get more than 25 million impressions per month
  • In the past 2 years, I’ve only had 3 months where I didn’t gain 2k+ new followers.
  • Starting in November of 2019, I’ve gained more than 3.5k followers per month.
  • In the past year, I’ve had 3 months where I got more than 5k new followers
  • I gain an average of 72 new followers a day
  • My follower to following ratio is a whopping 130:1

Most would be social media influencers would kill for these numbers on Twitter. But Twitter is a unique beast that your average Instagram model doesn’t have the patience to figure out what to do to get or even maintain more followers.

Twitter users are different. Twitter bios are different. Creating a Twitter profile that does these types of numbers is no easy task, but I’ve got you covered.

Screenshot of Ed Latimore's Twitter profile

Just see for yourself @Edlatimore. I’m the real deal.

I know how to get new followers on the Twitter social media platform

In a previous article, I gave you the foundation for building a great Twitter account that will make it easier to get more followers. That article can answer almost every question you have about Twitter that I don’t cover here.

Now I’m going to take it to the next level and teach you how to accelerate your growth on Twitter and get more followers than you ever have before.

But first, here is what I won’t be discussing in this Twitter article:

  • How to get more followers using spammy tactics. Buying fake followers is a waste of money. They’re just bots that don’t engage or share your content. “Followback” and   “follow/unfollow” methods are also a waste of time because it seriously degrades your social authority. These methods are used on all social networks and Twitter is no exception.
  • How to design an ideal profile. Your Twitter profile matters, but it is largely an afterthought. Just select a good profile picture and write a decent bio and you’re in good shape. I give an in-depth lesson on the best way to set up your Twitter profile here.
  • How to read Twitter Analytics.  They’re just to know, but it won’t make you get more followers. It will just allow you to track what’s working to get more followers. I give an in-depth lesson on Twitter Analytics here.
  • How to select a Twitter handle or Twitter username. This doesn’t matter nearly as much as you think it does. You’ll get followers if you can make people think, feel, reflect, or react.
  • Twitter marketing, content marketing, or social media marketing. This article teaches you how to get more followers. If you follow this advice, marketing is super easy. You won’t need a specific guide because if all things are equal, more followers = more money. You can learn more from me about making money online here.
  • How to use hashtags. I don’t think you need them other than to follow timely events. Sports, television shows, current events. My experience is that hashtags don’t help you get more followers. They do, however, help you connect and engage with the followers you already have.
  • Scheduling tweets with things like Buffer, Hootsuite, or Hypefury. Scheduling tweets can be useful, but you can’t solely rely on a content calendar app to tweet for you. The algorithm doesn’t see any interactions with other people so you don’t make any connections and build relationships with people. As a result, you won’t grow.  You can skip ahead to learn more about how the Twitter algorithm looks at your interactions with people right here.

Now that you know what’s not going to be in the article, we can cover what you can do to grow here. After following this advice, who knows what will happen? You might even pass me one day.

1) Write valuable high-quality content

People always want value.

If people see your Twitter account as a source of value, then it’s impossible not to grow. You could make every writing, marketing, and social media mistake in the book, but you’ll continue to make gains and get followers if you constantly give value.

Value is a simple concept to understand and easy to deliver via Twitter. To deliver value, you must do one of the following:

  • Educate people on how to solve a problem
  • Entertain people so they’re distracted from their problems
  • Solve the problem yourself
  • Inspire people

If you use your Twitter account to help people laugh, learn, or leverage things, you’ll have no problem getting more followers. When potential followers visit your Twitter feed, they are much more likely to hit the follow button and become a supporter.

Most people want to use social media as a place to vent and freely express themselves. This is also why the average Twitter account only has 707 followers. If you act like most people, you’ll get the results that most people have.

2) Post your personal insights

In your quest to deliver value, you’ll discover something that is potentially disheartening: there is almost nothing new for you to say or experience. I would even say that there is absolutely nothing new or unique that you’re going to experience, but I like to always leave room for doubt.

This bothers a lot of content creators on Twitter because they think they need to bring something completely new to the table so that they have a chance. But that isn’t the case.

While there are no new singular experiences, there is a nearly infinite amount of combinations of those experiences in a single lifetime. This leads to an almost infinite number of perspectives and ways to express those perspectives.

You don’t need to say something new, but you need to say something unique.

Old insights delivered in a new way is an easy way to quickly get more Twitter followers. Someone can read the same thing in 1000 different ways from 1000 different people, and for whatever reason, when they read it from you, they finally take action.

3) Be yourself 

You have to remember that no one can compete with you.

Getting more followers on Twitter comes down to how well you build and manage the authentic presentation of your personality and reputation.

More colloquially, this is known as your “Personal Brand”. Twitter is the easiest place there is to build a personal brand.

[Here’s a great article to learn about building your personal brand, not just on Twitter but across the internet—>Learn how to build a profitable personal brand]

No one can compete with you in being you. From this excellent article (Victor shut his site down, but I pulled the quote beforehand) by Victor Pride titled, “You Inc., The Incredible Way You Can Make Money Being Yourself”:

My business is me and I am my business and there is no separation and that’s the way you run You, Inc. I’m set for eternity because I lived the “nothing but B&D” mentality.

There is no separation between you and your Twitter content. I live what I write and I write what I live. This ensures that everything I talk about, I talk about with authority and experience.

Expertise is what’s implied when I talk about delivering more value to your followers.

You can only solve a problem if you’ve solved it yourself. You can only teach something if you know it. You can only entertain if you enjoy entertaining.

If you’re living true to yourself, your Twitter will resonate with authority. This authority in being yourself will not only skyrocket your growth, but it’ll make it WAY more difficult for someone to copy you.

I have a great free guide that teaches you how to write using Twitter, the social media platform built for writers. Download The Breakdown here.

4) Be polarizing

If you’re an intelligent and open-minded person, this section is going to annoy you.

That’s OK because reality doesn’t care about how you feel—only what works. The thing that works best for building big engagement on Twitter is speaking as if your opinion is a fact.

This means that you don’t prep your generalizations with “some people” and you don’t even remotely consider the possibility that there are exceptions to the rule, some of which may be major. You speak in an absolute, authoritarian tone about things that are obviously opinions.

This is the proper way to be polarizing on Twitter. Polarization forces people to choose one side or another. Speaking in absolutes is the definition of polarization.

In a situation where two different interpretations could be true depending on a variety of variable factors, speaking in absolutes is taking a side and ignoring the merits of the other side.

The naturally open-minded or intelligent will be bothered by this particular Twitter technique because they realize something: the most reasonable answer is neither black nor white, but a gray of varying intensity.

But polarization works because people will retweet you in agreement, or quote tweet you to disagree. This exposes you to more people, many of whom will follow you as an absolute authority.

5) Retweet your best tweets

When you have a tweet that does well, get as much mileage out of it as you can. There are two simple ways to do this:

This is the easiest as Twitter will just pop it back out to the crowd and make it way easier to share. Many people never think about doing this, but Twitter lets you retweet your own content once before you have to undo the retweet and do it again.

This is extremely useful because tweets otherwise have an extremely short half-life. No matter how viral a tweet goes, most of your followers didn’t see it, nor will they ever. Especially if they follow lots of people or are not religiously on Twitter.

There are ways to increase the likelihood that your tweets are seen and thus engaged with, but I’ll cover that in another section. For now, don’t be afraid to hit the retweet button on your own content.

(*Note*: This is not to be interpreted as “Tweet the exact same content.” That is against Twitter’s terms of use of service.)

Quote tweet your own tweet with commentary to get even more followers

This is a great way to not only re-expose your old material, but it also forces you to create material in a similar vein of something that’s already proven to be popular. People often look at what’s being quote tweeted so they have the context to make sense of the quote tweet.

Make sure that your quote tweet does not work as a standalone. You want to entice people to see and engage with the original tweet.

You can directly tell people to read the quoted tweet or indirectly make sure they have it. Either way, you want them to interact with the tweet that did well. You can also buy retweets from bigger accounts, but it can be hit or miss. 

If they also happen to strongly interact with the quote tweet, that’s a bonus.

6) Use media in your tweets

According to Twitter, posts that make use of gifs or images have engagement rates that are 35% higher than text alone. You can read more about this on Twitter’s blog.

This means that people are 3x more likely to retweet, like, comment and share your stuff. Which in turn means that you are more likely to be followed.

Memes and gifs have the potential to skyrocket your follower count.

If your growth has stagnated, adding an image or gif to your content will greatly increase the number of people who see, interact with, and ultimately follow you.

7) Reply to mentions from people

Social media is all about being social. One of the most amazing parts of Twitter is how your social circle expands around the world.

You’re simply not using the platform correctly if you don’t interact with people who interact with you. Get in the habit of replying to mentions for two major reasons.

The algorithm likes more chat on Twitter

Twitter’s algorithm notices when you interact with someone, follower or not.

When they get on to Twitter and scroll through their timeline, they’re greeted with tweets in the following order: ranked tweets, “In case you missed it”, and reverse-chronological order.

Reverse-chronological order simply shows the tweets based on the order they were tweeted and is why I suggested retweeting your old content.

As for the other two, Twitter has its own internal algorithm. Based on what and who you interact with, it will show you what it thinks you want to see first. These are the ranked tweets. When everyone gets on Twitter, this is the first thing they see.

If you want to greatly increase the chance that you are the first thing they see, interact more with people.

Twitter also uses the same algorithm when it comes to showing you what you missed.

According to former Twitter engineer Deepak Rao, the Twitter algorithm decides what to show your followers more of based on 3 primary factors:

  • The tweet itself: How much time has passed since it was posted, presence of media (images, gifs, or video, and overall engagement (retweets, clicks, favorites, and time spent reading it)
  • The tweet’s author: Your interactions with the author, the strength of your connection to them (based on how often you communicate publicly and in direct messages), and the origin of your relationship (what type of content you followed them from)
  • You: tweets you previous engaged with, how frequently, and how intensely you use Twitter

Notice that two key metrics are related to the nature and frequency of your interactions. If you want to be seen more—and thus retweeted and liked so your stuff shows up in other people’s timelines so they can follow you—interact more with your mentions.

Directly get into the hearts and minds of your followers

When you consistently reply to your mentions, you’ll have a much greater chance of making a fan of someone who was just delivering commentary.

I’ve done it with people who chime in to offer words of support or criticism. Because I try to be active in my mentions and reply whenever I can. It becomes more difficult (and less necessary) the more followers you gain, but doing it is well worth the effort.

You’ll get people involved with you who only came to troll, and very often, you can convert them to followers. This will, in turn, give you access to a whole new set of people.

A quick recap of the tips to get you more followers on Twitter:

  1. Write valuable high-quality content
  2. Post your personal insights
  3. Be yourself 
  4. Be polarizing
  5. Retweet your best tweets
  6. Use media in your tweets
  7. Reply to mentions

If you follow these tips, along with the tips in my other article about growing your Twitter, then the sky’s the limit for what you can do on Twitter.

These tips are guaranteed to get you more Twitter followers

If you have content you want to share, whether it be for fun or profit, then you need Twitter followers. Not only do you need a number of followers to start with, but you also need to continually gain followers. These suggestions will shake your flatlined Twitter growth back to life. 

Ed Latimore
About the author

Ed Latimore

I’m a writer, competitive chess player, Army veteran, physicist, and former professional heavyweight boxer. My work focuses on self-development, realizing your potential, and sobriety—speaking from personal experience, having overcome both poverty and addiction.

Follow me on Twitter.