Isn’t it funny on Twitter, Facebook and now Instagram? Your number of Friends and Followers can almost seem like a popularity contest; or the higher the number can put you in “Guru” status. But does it really?
In our quest to have a high number of followers are we randomly following anyone just to get them to follow back? And are we following back just so they won’t stop following us?
I know the opinions on this topic abound, and you can usually tell a “Guru’s” opinion on it by how closely his/her followers match their following numbers, specifically on Twitter. And I must share that my opinion is slanted to the side of –
Quality, not quantity.
I was recently “followed” by a guy on Twitter with nearly 20,000 followers and less than 200 tweets. Honestly, what ARE those 20,000 people following? He’s delivered very little content and as I looked at his tweets, all I could find was blatant self promotion. So, what’s the point in following. I opted not to follow back, and yes, he quit following me within 24 hours. An automate system is doing the work for him, no doubt.
To really break that down, this guy has 20,000 people who are “following” him, but are they? And following what? There is no message being shared; no relationship being built; and no valuable content out there. How many others are out there with massive followers and no point or message being delivered? So where is the value? Where is the social interaction? What is going on?
My advice is to turn off any “Auto Follow” and “Auto Friend Finder” services you may have subscribed to. These are really not providing you anything except a growing number that means almost nothing. Set aside a portion of your Social Media Strategy time each day to engage in finding REAL people who you want to build relationships with – people who fit your target market and who you might be able to engage in business with someday. Enough of this – throwing it up against the wall and see what sticks.
If you have been using these features, I encourage you to go into your followers and see who you are “linked to.” It might surprise or even shock you. I share this from personal experience. I used auto follow for about 2 weeks some time back. When I took the time to look in my feed, I found a lot of content that I had no interest in, and some that was quite offensive. I went through and unfollowed anyone who didn’t fit my target market, or my personal interests.
Find people, and follow them because YOU are interested in them; not because they might follow you back. Chances are really high that they will follow back and if they do, that is great because you have already identified them as your target market, and so that is likely mutual.
Then, spend some time each day on Twitter engaging with your followers. Comment on what their tweeting and learn more about them. Build a relationship based on the social side of things first, and then see how business can fit in.
I would rather have 500 quality followers and fans, than 20,000 who don’t know me as anything more than a number. I may not be the most “Followed” or popular person on Twitter, but I do have a quality list!
Same with Instagram, where these autobots post things like – Follow Me, I Follow back. Well, duh, if you like what you see, why not just follow me and if I see that and like what you share, I’ll follow you back!
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