Tips for growing your Social Media Channels, from Matt Winters, a social media growth master.
Meet Matt Winters, linkedin.com/in/matthewwinters1 for the past 10 years+ he’s been growing social groups on Facebook, LinkedIn, meetup.com, Instagram, and he even has his own social network nebii.com. Matt was recently interviewed by AustinVisuals.com to give business owner and marketing directors some tips on how to grow their own channels. Matt currently runs over 30 Facebook groups in Austin that he’s grown from scratch, meetup groups and email lists and has over 23,000 Linkedin Connections. In 2017 he won an award from meetup.com having made one of the most active meetup groups in the world. So let’s ask him how he did it and let’s ask him what other businesses can do to replicate some of that success.
AustinVisuals.com Q: – ” Matt, you’ve had a lot of success in growing these social groups. If you were a business just starting out, which social media platform would you focus on? Twitter? Linkedin? etc?”
Matt Winters – A: – ” I get this question a lot from businesses, especially startups. I’d say, first ask yourself what your goal is and who is your target customer? I recommend focusing on 1-2 platforms, starting some conversations and groups to get a feel for who is engaging with your post content before going all in. If your target customer you’re selling products to is a business type for luxury real estate, you may be more successful focusing on Linkedin, than Snapchat because Snapchat and Linkedin do not have very much overlap in demographics and Linkedin you can use specific targeted search features to get a message to a very specific audience over some other social platforms. Ultimately, you’ll have to experiment by posting and notice if anyone engages with your content at all. Over time you can start to observe and refine your posts until you get enough people to like, share, comment on your posts, then eventually that post momentum becomes a lead magnet for potential buyers that love what you provide.”
AustinVisuals.com Q: – ” If you’re a business that wants to quickly have a bunch of followers, 100’s or 1,000’s in a few months, what should you do? “
Matt Winters – A: ” You want to ask yourself why do you want followers? What is your goal with your social media campaign? Do you just want a business card type system for people to keep up with your contact information? Or do you want to build a reputation for your business so people can share good news about your product or service through word of mouth? Or do you want lots of followers quickly so that you can attempt to generate lots of sales from those followers? — The answer depends on what kind of business you have, what the mindset is of the types of people are on your chosen platform, and if your post messaging is communicating the value of your product or service in the way that calls those followers to action. For Facebook, I usually encourage brands to consider a post that is at least slightly funny, silly, or pokes fun of a concept ( of course we don’t do this for universally serious subjects ). Overall Facebook is a less serious place even though it can have similar people on it. Even Facebooks algorithms for promoting some content over others are geared towards this idea. — Once you’ve chosen your platform that is in ideal alignment with your product and messaging, study it further with posting test post content and measure your engagement. Start groups and invite followers online to follow you personally and to join your group. Become the source of good information. Become a subject matter expert and post about your business in direct and indirect ways in your group. Once you deliver enough valuable information that your group or personal followers find helpful, then they will encourage others to follow you to. — Providing real value and solving real problems for people is one of the ways you grow your following the fastest. Of course there are growth hacking techniques you could do too. You can pay to promote your ads to get more followers. You can also join multiple networks and link them all up to each other so members are joining all of your groups at once.
AustinVisuals.com Q: – ” Let’s say you start a group and you were able to get a few people into the group. You were able to grow a group like Austin Free Stuff from zero to over 56,000 members in about 1.5 years. How do you go from a few people to your first 1,000 members? “
Matt Winters – A: ” Great question. There are a variety of skills a group leader must have in order to achieve growth consistently in a group. 1. You can’t quit, just adjust and keep going ( I see a majority of people start a group or gathering followers. They are motivated for 2-3 months then lose steam after that. Within about a year their group has no engagement, minimal posts, and new people are not joining. 2. Solve Problems for people ( Each person joins the group with unique problems and expectations of the content they expect to receive and as a group leader you need to provide solutions to the reason why they are following you ) If you don’t know why they are there, ASK THEM! 3. Survey your members. Give them choices of posts, events, content they want to see and have them tell you what they want to see from you. Oh, and when you get feedback, DO IT! Your engagement will respond well using this method. People don’t just tell you what they need to say it, chances are when you hear group feedback of what content they want from the group or your posts, that multiple followers feel the same way. If you give them that content, they tend to feel they know you, like you, trust you more. People tend to buy and follow who they know, like, and trust. 4. Set rules / Boundaries for your group to keep community members safe and to keep spam out, to keep content on topic. ( Once your group grows those members have options they could pay attention to spammy groups or pay attention to yours. If your content is well thought out your followers will prefer more valuable content over spam. You may not realize you’re competing in a freemium market with everyone in the world posting content, but yes you are competing for people’s attention with your posts, so give them valuable content, have them learn something, give them discounts, give them access to stuff, give before you receive or ask your members to take an action in order for you to make a sale or promote your business. ”
AustinVisuals.com – ” Thank you Matt Winters, much for your time. We hope our Marketers and Business Owners our there were able to walk away with some ideas they can apply to their own social media initiatives. “