Perhaps one of the most commonly asked questions we get, is still a pretty logical one. We all ‘get’ the need for social media. We all understand that having an engaged community following us is the aim. This is why, we’re often asked – “how do you build a community?” (or more specifically, “How do I get more followers?“).
There are a variety of techniques you can employ to build followers, but in this post I want to talk to you about a very specific one. It’s what I call ‘The Field of Dreams’.
If you haven’t seen the same named film, the premise is around a farmer who hears voices telling him to build a baseball field in order to conjure the Chicago Black Sox. Throughout the film, the same mantra is repeated…
“If you build it, they will come”
It’s this same philosophy that is the basis of my advice to you. You see, this technique focusses exclusively on the organic practise of simply writing great content. If you’re writing 140 characters of Twitter gold, if you’re blogging words of wisdom that are truly insightful, if your Instagram is a haven of visual heaven, then you’re going to find people will flock to you.
Sure, it’s not that instant gratification you’re possibly looking for. It takes time and it takes effort. But so do any organic techniques, and the result is amazing. You’ll find that people will seek you out, people will recommend you, people will refer to you. Most importantly, they’re there because they want to be, so the effects of the strategy lead to sustainable growth, and an engaged community.
So how do I write great content?
I was once at an SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) seminar, and the speaker was explaining to the audience how [for your content] to be found in search engine results, you should write specifically for search engines. Utter rubbish.
Our (content creators) focus should be on nothing, but your audience. You should write, for your readers. Tweet content that your audience is going to want to hear. That’s how you build a community of interested followers.
You need to understand what your community wants. What questions do they have? What information would they find useful? Find influencers within your field/industry, check what your peers are talking about; some research will give you a pretty good idea about what content your community craves.
On our social media training, I always give the advice “aim to become authoritative in your field”, and it largely comes down to the same advice as I’m giving here. Content curation is awesome, you can be a great source of news, updates and information. But to be truly great, write great content.
So, if you’re out there wondering “How do I get more followers?”, simply remember – if you built it, they will come.
I’d love to know – what do you consider great content? Leave a comment below and let me know…