5 Reasons Why Your Social Media Account Isn’t Growing

Why haven’t you been able to attain the level of growth you’d hoped for in your social media account? Let’s look at five common factors.

Unlocking the mystery of why your social media accounts aren’t growing can be difficult. There are often many variables that can impact the rate at which your account grows, including topic, posting frequency, platform, size, or audience demographic, to name a few. 

While the stagnation of your growth may be a result of a combination of factors, there are likely a few, more common reasons why you haven’t been able to attain the level of growth you’d like.

1. You’re Not Posting Consistently

Stock Image of Man Sitting Cross-Legged Holding Tablet with Calendar Window Pulled UpPost with consistency. Image via Rawpixel.com.

To best optimize your account for growth, you need to ensure that you’re posting consistently. This means posting at a consistent cadence with consistent content. There are a few good reasons to post regularly.

First, the algorithm values consistent posting. Every platform needs content and those who post regularly tend to perform better. Does this mean you need to be tweeting fifty-plus times per day? Not necessarily. However, you should set aside time to create a schedule for when you would be able to post content. The key isn’t how much you post, but rather how regularly can you post without diluting the quality of your content.

Similar to consistency in cadence, you also need to pay close attention to making sure your content is consistent. If someone follows an account that specializes in news content, posting an inspirational quote might not land with the audience curated thus far. Take a look at your top-performing posts over the last thirty days. Do you notice any trends or similarities? Use this data to help inform what content you should be creating.

Need more guidelines? Here’s a short list of recommendations of how often you should post on each social media platform:

Facebook: Two times per dayInstagram: Two times per dayTwitter: Fifteen times per dayLinkedIn: Approx. five times per weekPinterest: Approx. three times per dayTikTok: One to three times per day

While these guidelines are a good place to start, don’t feel forced to stick to them. According to Later, most platforms (with the exception of LinkedIn and Facebook) see little to no drop in engagement when posting more often. So, if you can keep your content high-quality, you may see more results posting more often—if you can keep up the pace.

2. You’re Not Engaging with Others

Assortment of Social Media <span class=Template Illustrations Promoting Giveaways" class="wp-image-162419" />Engage with the community by hosting a “Giveaway” post. Image via Tartila.

Another reason your account may not be growing is that you’re not engaging with others. On all platforms, the algorithm favors accounts who interact (genuinely, no spam) with other accounts. Using share, like, and other engagement features can only help your accounts grow.

For smaller accounts, this may look like going to other brands or content creators and commenting on their posts, sharing their content, and making yourself visible. For larger accounts, you may need to reply more frequently to comments, reshare UGC on your page or story, or surprise your followers with a giveaway or “surprise and delight” opportunity. 

An added benefit of this is the new followers you gain are more likely to be followers who engage with accounts. This may increase the engagement on your content and, similarly, increase your organic virality. 

3. Your Content Is Too Niche

Illustration of a Woman Instructor Giving a Presentation. She is Surrounded By Books and a GlobeNo matter if it’s educational or entertainment, make sure your topic isn’t too niche. Image via KatePilko.

For smaller accounts, your growth may be impacted by the type of content you post. You may find yourself in too niche of a territory. While any topic can likely find an audience online (see “mixing paint colors” on Tik Tok), you may have a harder time growing your account if your topic is too niche. 

This doesn’t mean you need to entirely rebrand, however. Instead, find ways to connect your niche topic to a broader audience. For example, if your niche interest is “set design of Wes Anderson films,” you could expand this to reach a broad audience by highlighting awesome photos, while also inspiring global travel and interesting human stories.

4. Your Content Is Too Broad

Stick Illustration of Woman and Man Sitting and Viewing Social Media on Their DevicesMake sure your audience knows what they’re looking at. Image via KatePilko.

Conversely, you may have the opposite problem of being too niche—going too broad. There’s a chance that you cast too wide a net and never landed on any particular focus to curate your audience. While it’s good to keep your content fresh, it’s important that followers know what they’re getting when they visit your account. 

This may mean phasing out certain types of content to focus on your best performer. Although, if you’re determined to keep your content broad, you may need to find a specific style, medium, or angle that helps to fit all the pieces together. Some large brands, like MTV, do this well. They offer a great balance of celebrity news, show announcements, and celebrity memes and highlights. This works, in part, because there’s a large enough audience in place that there’s likely a segment of their base that follows whichever celebrity or show they’re highlighting—but it’s unlikely that all of their content lands with a large portion of their followers. 

5. You’re Not Looking at the Whole Picture

African-American Businesswoman Presenting Data on a Whiteboard to a Virtual MeetingTrack your data. Image via Vadym Pastukh.

While followers are a good metric to track, other metrics can show account growth. You may have stagnated in follower count, but your impressions, reach, or engagement are climbing. This is a good sign that you’re doing the right things, but just need to give it more time. 

Other than followers, some additional metrics to track could be impressions, reach, engagement rate, click-through-rate, video views after ten seconds, etc. There are endless amounts of data you can track, and the more well-versed you are on the performance of your accounts, the better idea you’ll have on how to steer it properly.

BONUS: You Don’t Have a Call-to-Action

User-Generated Content: Illustration of Social Media Users Holing Icons for Music, Favoriting, <span class=Photography, and Hashtag" class="wp-image-162397" />Put out a call-to-action by giving them the option to “like” your content. Image via Rawpixel.com.

As a bonus tip, if there’s a certain action you want your audience to take (such as following your account), you may be missing a key component in your content. You need to tell your audience what you want. This could be as simple as asking them to like or follow your content, or you can use this as an opportunity to summarize what content you create and give them an easy way to access it (visit your blog, shop, etc.). Sometimes, it’s as simple as asking.

Growing an account isn’t easy. It can get discouraging when you spend hours working on content, and see other accounts go viral with one or two posts. These tips may not get you a million followers overnight, but doing the proper branding and content work will undoubtedly help your brand in the long run.

For more social media tips and advice, check out these articles:

Keeping Social Content Fresh on Fast-Paced Platforms10 Clickable Trends to Use in Your Email Designs in 2021The 50/20/20/10 Rule to Social Media Content Creation13 Creative Instagram Accounts to Follow for Inspiration in 2020Creative Instagram Feed Ideas to Keep Your Social Media Fresh

Cover image via Bakhtiar Zein.

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