To Follow Or Not To Follow: That is the Question on Twitter

You go through the ritual once every couple of days. Unless you have auto-follow, that is.

How do you decide whether or not to follow someone back on Twitter? I fielded the question on Twitter and here are some of the responses I got.

@CWarfield: shared interests; no spam or useless “eating a ham sando” posts

@rtstrategy: re following back: educational/entertaining content & signs they are engaging.

@alewi854: They need a good bio and tweet regularly RT @andrewspoeth: what do you look for when considering to follow someone back?

@walkerjill: but not tweet TOO MUCH! RT @alewi854 good bio & tweet regularly RT @andrewspoeth what do you look for when considering to follow ppl back?

Take a look at your newest followers in Twitter and decide who to follow back. My process involves a CTRL+click on each profile name to open up a new tab for each person. Next, I scan profile information and tweet stream. Looking at these, I consider:

1. Interests of the Twitterer

How closely do they match mine. I tend to keep open to various interests, unless it’s something like sharing wealth or getting rich quickly.

2. Follower count

I don’t look for a large number of followers. More important is a balance between Following and Followers. If the person is following way more than being followed, it’s a red flag.

3. Tweet volume

Check number of tweets against number of followers. If this person’s tweet volume far exceeds the number of people who follow them, it’s likely an indication of boring tweets.

4. Quality of content

What would be described as quality on Twitter? I personally look for tweets that are:

  • thought provoking
  • funny
  • resourceful
  • current
  • generous
  • engaging

A twitterer should have a healthy balance between original content, retweets, and engagement with others. It’s also encouraging to see the occasional question – an indication this twitterer is interested in listenting.

Image credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/emikeycq/ / CC by NC SA