If Twitter seems like a popularity contest to you then think again.
Twitter can be a powerful marketing tool for your brand.
But if you are just starting out, how do you know who to follow?
I could rehash common advice here and tell you to follow people in your niche etc. etc. But you probably already know all that.
2 Types of Twitterers
What is not so obvious is that there really are 2 types of Twitterers – those that talk TO you, and those that talk AT you.
Twitterers That Talk TO You
The people that talk TO you on Twitter are valuable.
When you interact with someone on Twitter your Twitter handle shows up in their timeline for all their followers to see.
When someone retweets your tweet your Twitter handle shows up in their timeline for all their followers to see.
Are you catching on here?
When Twitterers talk TO you, you increase your exposure on Twitter.
And as you would with any prized possession, you should take care of these type of Twitterers by responding and sharing their tweets and interactions.
These tweets are the start of business relationships that can grow into great partnerships.
Twitterers That Talk AT You
Twitterers that talk AT you are not very useful. These are the ones that only tweet out their own posts and don’t share or talk to others.
They are pretty useless in my opinion.
Twitter is about sharing and helping others.
If someone has a hundred thousand followers but only tweets their own stuff, that is pretty much a one way relationship. Unless their tweets are very important to your business, why should you spend your time retweeting and boosting this type of Twitterer?
How To Spot the Difference
The way to spot the difference between theses types of followers is to take a look at a Twitterer’s timeline. If each and every post is a promotion of their own work, then you know that there is nothing in it for you.
They will likely never talk to you or expose your brand to their followers.
Instead, spend your time following Tweeps that will interact with you.
Cherry Picking Takes Too Long
That being said, cherry picking who you follow will take a long time. More time than you should be spending on your Twitter account.
What you need is a loose system for evaluating different people on Twitter.
For example, if I promote another person’s work or tweets, I kind of keep track of whether that person responds to me.
They don’t have to follow me back.
But if they thank me, retweet my tweet, or favorite my tweet – then I know that there is a real person behind the account and that is all the encouragement I need to continue the relationship.
It’s not a science.
You have to remember that this is a “social” platform – so don’t take a hard line as to who you should follow on Twitter.
What you want to do is foster a reciprocal relationship with as many people as you can. You will follow people that don’t interact – and that is ok. You just want to make sure that you follow a good number of people that do.
It’s All In The Lists
To help you with this goal, Twitter has a powerful feature called “Lists”.
I created a private list to organize the Twitterers that talk to me.
I nurture this list by retweeting and actively sharing what these people post.
It separates their tweets from the rest of my following so I can be sure to promote them as best as I can.
Who Am I?
If you want to find me on Twitter head over to my Twitter account (@AlmostPractical) and introduce yourself. Talk to me!
I am working Twitter hard and would love to get to know you.
Who Do You Follow on Twitter?
What is your strategy for choosing who to follow on Twitter? Tell me in the comments below.