Who to Follow on Twitter?



Twitter is very beneficial for your social SEO! In fact Twitter is more about modern SEO than other social media I hailed during my early years.

Yeah, Twitter has surpassed my wildest expectations.

Why is Twitter so valuable for bloggers, social media managers and search engine optimizers ? Well, Twitter is:

  • Fast
  • Relevant
  • Simple

You can spread the word fast, to a relevant audience and do it in a very simple manner.

Word of Mouth Works well on Twitter

Also the word of mouth can spread virally if you get it right. To get it right you need to build a network of friends over at Twitter who share your interests and who care for you.

I was incredibly lucky as a blogger to already have such people scattered over the Interwebs. Thus I could get them to follow me on Twitter quite quickly.

When I reached approx. 200 friends (followers whom I followed too) the Twitter concept worked best for me.

Ever since it got tougher. The more people I followed the less I could communicate with each one. In the end at double the number of friends my Twitter experience has significantly deteriorated.

I got more and more unanswered tweets. People stopped to share my own posts on other social sites. Part of it was also due to my focus shifting to my business blogging clients though.

You can still get Twitter right. It’s just not about how many people follow but how close they are to you and how much they engage.

Get More Followers?

The main reason behind my Twitter problems was the nonsense the Twitter celebrities tell you. The size of your following is almost meaningless.

“The more the better, follow people to make them follow back”. I was wondering what happened when engagement dwindled:

  • Did people stop liking me?
  • Was I not prolific enough anymore?
  • Were there too many new kids on the blog to notice the old fart?

I noticed some new voices among the Twitter clamor: People who said “quality before quantity” – that not the numbers are important but the bonds.

This is obvious but we tend to forget that the Internet is just a reflection of real life enhanced by technology. You can’t have hundreds or thousands of friends.

Who Did I Follow Initially?

I had to change my strategy on whom to follow. Before I followed quite indiscriminately

  1. Leaders of the search marketing industry
  2. People “I knew” from elsewhere
  3. People who might be useful due their high popularity
  4. People who followed with me
  5. Active Twitter users
  6. Renowned marketers
  7. Friends of friends
  8. People who addressed me

I ended up with huge amounts of tweets on my Twitter stream from people I couldn’t even remember to have followed.

Then I used the emergency brake. I started to “unfollow” people who never even addressed, linked or referred to me.

Unfollow the Noisy or Silent Ones

I unfollowed people telling me about their lunch and those tweeting all the time so that you couldn’t see the others anymore.

Just 50 noisy “friends” less and the Twitter experience already had improved significantly.

Would I only reduce the number of people I follow from now on? No, I wanted to move on and connect with new people, but this time I’ll do it differently. Who to follow on Twitter then?

The single most important factor for me to follow you on Twitter is from now on: You have to communicate with me.

  • You can reply
  • retweet
  • mention me
  • or let me know that you exist on other social media.

There must be a connection. I’m not just listening to you like to a radio station. When you don’t talk to me, I most likely won’t speak with you either and I certainly won’t listen all the time.

Also I don’t care that you do SEO. I hate such SEO! I practice SEO 2.0 so in case you think I’ll befriend you just because you’re a self proclaimed SEO expert: Fail!

Also I rarely “befriend” people who beg me to become friends. I befriend people who act like friends.

On the Web attention is the currency not money so I’m as poor or rich as you and I don’t beg you so stop begging as well.

Just in case you still want to follow me: I’m @onreact over at Twitter. I don’t tweet solely about work though. Prepare for shares that are relevant beyond niche audiences.

* (CC BY 2.0) Creative Commons image by Christopher Michel