How to use shoutouts properly
Shoutouts are probably the fastest way to grow your Twitter or Instagram account.
It’s also the fastest way to screw your account if you don’t know what you are doing. You will learn why at the end of this article.
Let me tell you how to use shoutouts properly. It’s easy if you do things the right way.
What is a shoutout?
Let’s say one of my friends, who is a seasoned influencer, has a large account, with a pretty good engagement rate. Because he is my friend, he knows me very well, and he wants to help me grow my Instagram account.
He is going to post a story – or in his feed – a photo of me or one of my posts, claiming I’m the best social media marketer on planet Earth, and that you should check my profile and follow me.
He will add my Instagram handle, so his followers can click on my name to see my page. Always make it easy and straightforward.
And because he wants to do it right and respect the time and the attention his followers give him, he will provide more details about what they can expect from me.
If he is my best friend, he will probably record a selfie video to “sell my profile” even more.
“Guys, you really want to go and follow my man Pierre-Olivier. He will change your social media marketing for the best. Thanks to his coaching, I went from 358 followers to 534,228 in 5 days without working out or even changing my diet. Blah blah blah…“
Why does it work so well?
Well, as usual, it has to be an alchemy of many small must-haves.
. My friend has a significant audience, and his engagement rate is above average. When he posts something, his followers pay attention.
. He is an authority on that topic because you can’t build such a large account without understanding the rules of the social media game. Even with my help.
. He is a friend of mine, so he knows me well. His followers will trust him even more because of that.
. We all have only one reputation. You don’t want to screw it by lying to your followers.
. He makes very authentic posts and videos. He believes what he says, even if he oversells a bit when he talks about me. I know. I wrote it myself 🙂
. His followers are the kind of followers I’d like to reach. Big influencers follow other big influencers so they can learn new tactics, collaborate on projects… and watch them too. If my friend tells them I’m good at what is their core business, they will follow me too. And maybe they will hire me.
If you combine all my points, you will probably hit a home run, and get a few dozens/thousands/tens of thousands of new followers.
What if you don’t have a trustworthy friend influencer like the ones I have?
Don’t worry. You can’t buy friendship but you can buy shoutouts, and it’s almost the same when it comes to marketing.
Do your homework.
Find the right influencers, checking all the points I have mentioned. Of course, the ones you will find probably don’t know you, but you will tell them what they have to know about you.
We call that a “Briefing.”
Once you have found the ones you like, reach out to them. They have a business account, so you can probably email them. Try DMing them if needed.
Ask them how much they would charge for shouting you out.
Rates are still meager. Despite what they say, influencers don’t always make that much money, so they are open for business.
It can start as low as $50 for a story, and you can find a perfect profile for less than $500.
Of course, if you are the heir of Jeff Bezos, you can probably afford big names.
It sounds a lot.
It is still highly underpriced attention.
I’m dead serious. These can be fantastic deals for a young brand, as long as their brand positioning is aligned with Kylie’s one.
If you pay $50 for a collaboration with an influencer having 5,000 followers, it’s a $0.01 per follower.
If you hire Christiano and her 169M followers, you will pay $0.004 per follower… and tie your name with his.
Obviously, the way I present it is very basic on purpose. It’s actually much more complicated (engagement rate matters a lot here) but I just want to make my point.
If results are so magical, why could a shoutout screw your account?
The main reason is BAD CASTING.
Choosing the wrong influencer can do more bad than good.
Let’s say you need to promote the account of your luxury fitness center in Miami. Do you really want to ask that Russian guy who built a community of 5M followers by shooting on junk cars with crazy guns in the heart of Siberia?
Even if he agrees to do it for free, stay away from it.
You’d be doomed.
If he shoutouts your fitness facility, you will receive a bunch of Russian followers who will never come to your facility, never engage with your content, and won’t even remember a few days later why they started following you in the first place.
They came because he asked them to do it.
Very soon, they will become as good as Fake followers for you: Dead weights lowering your engagement rate, and thus, your exposure to new “good” followers.
The ultimate truth is that it doesn’t matter how you get your followers, as long as they know why they started following you and as long as they love you enough to engage with your content.
Twitter and Instagram are social media platforms. They are fantastic because they let you have meaningful conversations with people you care about.
Shoutouts are powerful.
Consider them as the nuke of your arsenal when it comes to social media marketing.
They are the fastest way to grow an entire audience you will do business with eventually.
But your real investment is not the checks you will write to the influencers. It’s the hard work you will put into selecting them and the kind of relationship you will build with them.
That topic is vast and multifaceted.
Feel free to comment or message me if you have questions, and I’ll be happy to help.