My average goals at the start of each semester have not usually been to increase my follower growth on Twitter. Up until taking this course, I had lost my touch with Twitter and lacked the ambition to increase my network, specifically on my professional Twitter account. Since starting COM 344, my growth has increased from 35 followers to 152 followers. Who knew I could feel so accomplished from growing my network by 117 followers, with an average of around one new follower a day?
It has not been easy for me to get back into tweeting each week, but now I find myself tweeting on my own without only following along with the assignments. I found that a great way to increase my followers was to expand who I followed. I began following many of my Newhouse peers, especially those in class with me. I engaged with them by liking, commenting, and even mentioning some of them in my tweets. This definitely contributed to my growth, and even allowed some real-life relationships to ensue.
I also found that including hashtags as well as directly tweeting at Twitter was useful in expanding my network. For example, when I tweeted @bjsrestaurants, I attracted more users to my Tweet and even gained a follow from @bjsrestaurants, who became my top follower in September.
I believe that if I want to continue growing my network, I will need to tweet and engage with others even more than I do now on Twitter. I need to make more of a presence, but I am happy with the routine I am getting into as I am more accustomed to tweeting on my own again. I think I can definitely be more consistent, and that is something I plan to work on.
Finally, I also noticed an increase in my Klout score from the beginning of this course. I started at 22 and have ended up with a score of 36. I realized that my Klout score hit its peak of 38 on November 18. I would contribute this to my tweet from November 17 that included a popular hashtag, #FeedAmerica. This is a hashtag that likely gains a lot of traffic and attention.
Above all, I can say I have reevaluated the effect I have on Twitter. I used to think that it would not make a difference to engage with others about every little thing going on in my life through tweets. From this course, I have come to appreciate the incredible platform that Twitter is for people who want to engage with one another, the news, or elicit an open conversation.
It’s important to remember that gaining influence and starting conversations takes work. I could not have expanded my network if I did not first contribute my own efforts. I needed to let my peers know I was on Twitter and a willing user looking to engage with them. Now, I find that I have a place to put my opinions, in an appropriate manner. In a simple way, I can include hashtags for campaigns I support or tweet at users I familiarize with. Twitter has become a tool I used to under appreciate. It is now one I admire and frequently use. I look forward expanding my influence and creating an active voice in the Twitterverse.
All numbers courtesy of Twitter Analytics and Klout.com unless otherwise noted.