When You Should (or Should Not) Follow Back

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“Follow for Follow?”

“Please follow me!”

“Can I get a Follow?”

If you’re a brand on social media, you’ve probably seen these tweets (and countless others like them) where consumers are begging for a follow back. Whether they are asking because they truly love your brand, or just love their own follower growth count, it can be tricky to determine who should or should not get a follow back from your company. 

Who your company follows on social media is a very personal decision unique to your own mission, but here are some ground rules for who you should or should not give a follow to online. 

Should
When you are first establishing your account, no matter the platform, you should be mindful to follow back customers that are actively interacting with your brand. When you take the time to hit that follow button, you let consumers know that they are seen, and important to your brand. Not to mention, when you as a company follow back individual audience members, you become much more approachable, and able to build lasting, personal relationships that are vital to the health of your business. People want to feel connected to the brands they buy from, which is why a simple follow back could mean big results when it comes to customer loyalty. 

Should Not
While it is a great idea to follow back new audience members, that may not be the best idea in some cases. For example, never follow back spam accounts, people who follow and then immediately unfollow you, or any account that is harmful to your brand’s image. Be aware of who you are following as a company, and keep your image consistent. Following back can be a great strategic move for brand awareness, but sometimes not giving a follow is even more important. 

No matter your personal criteria for following back individuals, always keep in mind that you should never buy into programs that auto-follow people back on your behalf. Not only is this dangerous territory with spam and other inappropriate accounts, but it also makes the process impersonal and scripted. Consumers can tell when you are being genuine or not on social media, so never take shortcuts. 

How do you manage who you follow back on social media? 

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