A Better Beginner: How I Made Progress on My Social Media Influence

— From 4 to 20: 400% or 16? —

From 4 to 20, I was not surprised by the only 16 followers I gained after this semester. I checked the roster and found they were generally two types of people: (1) acquaintances, including friends, classmates, and professors; (2) people in fandom studying field, including several scholars or people interested in this area, they followed back because of my following them and interacting with them. One outlier was an advertising account @EdaraBabyG, who had 661K followers. But her purpose was to promote their video (sad).

As for the Klout score, I achieved a growth from 11.63 to 27.70, although Facebook contributed 84% of it. Twitter Analytics also told me that I got a 54% increase in my tweet impressions scores in the past month. Being someone who came from a country where no Facebook or Twitter was accessible, I would say that I was making progress. However, I didn’t make any success to become an influencer or an expert in any field. I would try harder in the next year of my master studies.

Guided by the instruction of our class, I think I have done these things “right”: (1) Keep a continuing relaxed tone; (2) Use rich media: ; (3) Keep an eye on a specific field: I tried to tweet as much as possible in fandom field and contact with people in this field; (4) try to contact strangers: I’ve made new friends through this semester on Twitter, especially in fan study field, which benefitted me a lot.

However, I failed to do these: (1) Hashtags: I didn’t use hashtags wisely, so my tweets used only a few hashtags which were not popular enough;(2) Direct Contact: I failed to contact influential people successfully, maybe because I didn’t find a good way and I was not brave enough to directly “talk” to them; (3) Try New Staff: I was a little stuck to “fandom” because I planned to make my Twitter account more of a “me” tagged with fandom study. Sadly, this didn’t work for my poor skills and the unpopular field.

— What got more attention? —

According to the top10 tweets I tweeted, I think 4 types of information gained more attention than others:

1. Fancy things were inspiring

The most impressing tweets were about fancy things, like special skills, original drawings or cartoon videos depicting special habits. I think this inspires me because it means I can use this skill to gain more interaction in the future.

This is (sadly) my most influencing tweet this semester. It was about a special artistry in my hometown, which was both risky and splendor.

2. We all want to laugh

Hilarious tweets also got likes. Everyone loves to laugh. But how far I can go is still my concern. Ideally, the humorous pieces could be related to my tone on Twitter.

3. We are sharing something in common.

According to my experience of managing my other social media platforms, I summarized that people want to like and retweet those they are sharing, like something about their life, their country or their right. I list the following two in this category because I tried to find something interesting in my own daily life. Take the dumpling post as an example,  the two people who liked me was a Chinese friend who liked dumplings and an American friend who loved cooking.

#NHsmtp dumplings are the best food in the world ˊ_>ˋ

A post shared by Dongqing Xu (@dxzq1107) on

4. knowledge and news

New knowledge and news were also appealing. For example, I retweeted the news that Stephen Hawking passed away in a sudden, and I got 3 comments and one like. On WeChat that day, our tweets about this event were also getting a lot of attention.

— How can I become a better influencer? —

I think this trip on Twitter makes me more familiar with social media in another culture. Not all the things are shared in both cultures. Skills I used and won success on WeChat public accounts in China are not as useful on Twitter in the USA. I have to admit that some of my tweets should be more popular as I thought because I gained more followers on Weibo with the same content, e.g., Snoopy dogs I drew. I think this was because we are not sharing the same idols in different cultures. Without a cue that TerryLin loves Snoopy, people who don’t really care about Snoopy will not feel engaged.

Also, I appreciate the knowledge of “tone”. I think this is how we tag ourselves on social media. I will use this skill on my other social media platforms. Since most of my audience is in China, I will keep on trying that on my Chinese platforms. Additionally, I gained more skills in finding influential people and reach them. I never thought I could interact with famous strangers on social media because I thought people didn’t want to have conversations with normal followers.


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