If This Guy Can Get 66,000 Twitter Followers, So Can You

Last Updated Apr 19, 2011 12:19 PM EDT

If you want to increase your Twitter following -- but you aren't Lady Gaga (9.4 million) or Justin Bieber (8.9 million) and you aren't willing to channel your inner Charlie Sheen to get attention -- look no farther than Calvin Lee, the founder of Mayhem Studios and self-styled spiky haired graphic designer with a Twitter addiction.

Calvin's Twitter popularity has not only benefited his award-winning design firm but has also resulted in mainstream media exposure and opportunities like a LG Mobile-sponsored trip to the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

Here's how Calvin built his Twitter following:
  • I'm just being me, engaging with my community. I try to be a resource for them. I'm a designer, so I retweet lots of design articles for beginners.
  • Know your audience. Many of my followers are small biz to medium size. Many can't afford a designer like me. Articles on web design, color, inspiration and basics of design really helps them. Novice articles are the best -- my audience doesn't benefit from intermediate or advanced design topics.
  • Answer questions. If it's not in my area of expertise, I try to find an answer for them.
  • Make sure to retweet others and share great content. Retweeting is a great way to build your network. That's how I've become friends with people like Chris Brogan, Guy Kawasaki, and key persons in small and large companies.
  • Be transparent. I share what I enjoy in my life and I'm very transparent about everything I do. I tweet photos and check in on foursquare. People feel that I am a real person.
  • Take online connections to the next level. Attend tweetups and conferences. You build a stronger bond after In Real Life (#IRL) meetings. It's just like hanging with old friends.
  • It's all about them. Be nice and courteous. Help your followers any way you can. Building a following is like providing great customer service.
  • Always give value. My followers know I like trying things out. Many brands and companies have offered me trips, products, etc. Often I'm already using the products or schwag I get, but either way I'm honest and fair about how I feel. I always stay true to myself. If I am given a product to review, I trust my community to know they won't have to doubt my choices. I focus on giving my followers real value; when you do, you'll always stay on the straight and narrow.
Read More: Photo courtesy Calvin Lee
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    Jeff Haden learned much of what he knows about business from managing a 250-employee book manufacturing plant. Everything else he picked up from ghostwriting books for some of the smartest CEOs and leaders in business. He has written more than 30 non-fiction books, including four Business and Investing titles that reached #1 on Amazon's bestseller list. Follow him on Twitter at @Jeff_Haden.

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