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To Small Businesses that Want to Gain New Social Media Followers But Can’t Get Started

Attracting social media fans is difficult when you’re a smaller company. You have a smaller brand presence and advertising budget.
To help you increase your online following when the odds are against you, here are six approaches you should use:
1. Host a networking event. Hosting a networking event is inexpensive. All you have to do is buy beverages, order food, and invite local business owners to your office for a night of entertainment. Gathering local business professionals gives you an opportunity to promote your social channels because you can hang posters that display your social handles at the event or mention your social handles at the end of your speech, if you’re delivering a presentation. 
Use free websites such as Meetup to create and promote events.
2. Share insights on niche blogs. If you’re a health product company, offer tips such as 10 Ways to Lose Your Beloved Love Handles on publications such as Women's Health Magazine or Health.com. If you’re a social media tool company, provide advice such as 5 Boring but Useful Twitter Metrics You Must Track on sites such as Social Media Today or HubSpot. Sharing insights on relevant niche blogs lets you promote your social media pages to your target audience since you can display your social accounts in your author bio.
3. Submit content to local chambers. Contributing content on a local chamber’s website lets you promote your social channels to hundreds or even thousands of local businesses. Chambers such as Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce or Houston Chamber of Commerce have hundreds of members and getting your articles, which have your social handles mentioned in the author bio, shared by these organizations would make lots of businesses become aware of your social channels.
4. Leverage co-content marketing. Co-content marketing is similar to guest blogging – a professional submits a blog post to a company’s website and both the professional and company push the content on their own social pages. 
The biggest difference between co-content marketing and guest blogging is that a piece of co-content doesn’t need to be a typical article submitted by one external professional. It can be an infographic based on feedback from 20 seasoned SEO experts, an interview with digital marketing professionals, or a whitepaper written by five AdWords specialists.
Performing co-content marketing lets you leverage your content contributors’ social networks to gain new followers because when the contributors share the co-content on their social channels and mention your social handles, their fans become aware of social media pages.
5. Invite reviews. If you’re a restaurant owner, invite local food bloggers to review your dishes. If you’re a retailer, invite local fashion bloggers to review your latest summer accessories.
Getting your products or services reviewed by relevant local bloggers helps you attract followers because when the bloggers promote the review on their social channels while mentioning your social pages, their fans become exposed to your social media accounts.
6. Partner with relevant social media users. Find relevant social media users and offer incentives for them to share content about your brand.
For example, if you’re a small restaurant owner, offer discounts to foodie Instagram users such as @alice_gao or @alifewortheating to share pictures of your dishes and mention your Instagram handle.

Partnering with relevant social media users helps drives your target audience to your social accounts. (Read Pie for Posts to see how a bakery is leveraging Instagram users to increase Instagram following.)
Use tools such as Followerwonk or Totems to find relevant social users.
Gaining new social followers doesn’t have to be costly. There are simple, cost-effective approaches such as offering incentives, hosting networking events, or inviting blogger reviews that you can use to increase social following.


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