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Growing Twitter Followers by Using Google AdWords

By — April 7th, 2011

A Pro Bono client of ours, Ploughshares, is a non-profit grant-making organization dedicated to the safety and elimination of nuclear weapons. Google has generously awarded Ploughshares a Google Grant, which grants a level of free clicks on Google AdWords for qualified keywords and ad copy, and we have assisted in applying for the grant and watching over it. After the Tsunami in Japan, Ploughshares President Joe Cirincione was in great demand by the media for his expertise about the issues and risks associated with radiation from the Diiachi nuclear plant at Fukushima. Both Joe and the Ploughshares organization are well known as knowledge experts on nuclear issues. They both have active Twitter feeds where they share their knowledge – as well as that of their grantees. After the damage to the nuclear plant in Fukushima, we created some additional campaigns in their Google Grant built off keyword searches pertinent to Ploughshare’s expertise and the crisis. One of the campaigns was geared towards growing more followers on Twitter for Joe. This was highly relevant because of his rapid updates about the crisis. The exciting thing about this campaign was that it created a new avenue to grow followers for a Twitter feed. Identifying specific keywords from people looking for analysis and updates about the nuclear situation in Japan, we had results of over a 5% click-through rate, still within the boundaries of the Google Grant. 5% clickthrough rate, in most situations is a very strong result. Over the past month we’ve sent 1,251 people to Joe’s Twitter feed from Google AdWords. And while Joe has been very prominent in the media during this time so he’s likely growing his followers from many channels. We don’t know the full source of followers, but Joe has grown his Twitter audience by over 1,000 followers – nearly 30% growth – in the last month. What excites us about this is that we’ve been able to assist in identifying a channel to get more Twitter followers. We’ve done this for Facebook – using Google AdWords to grow the fan base, in the same manner.

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