A fascinating series of conversations (and a couple of arguments) sprung up on Twitter last nite about managing your followers. Some people, like my good friend Beth Harte are considering ‘resetting’ their Twitter account. Beth’s rationale is that she wants to get back to following fewer people, and having strong connections with the people she does follow. She lamented the fact that she doesn’t know most of the people that follow her, and have no idea why they are.
I have to admit, I have the same issue.
But while we were having this discussion on Twitter, Linda left this tweet:
That was the first time I can ever remember Linda sending me a message, and I followed her as soon as she did. And Linda’s tweet explains perfectly why I could never reset my account. If it meant unfollowing 99 spammers and 1 person such as Linda, who is following me because she gets value from my tweets, then it’s not worth it.
This is why I believe in following people back liberally, and then pruning followers later if they end up being spammers. And I guess I have always seen the power in the ‘little guy’, and I know that far too often, today’s little guy is tomorrow’s Chris Brogan. Also as an introvert, I understand that just because someone isn’t connecting with me, doesn’t mean that they don’t WANT to. They may just be looking for the opening that makes them feel comfortable doing so.
So moving forward, I am going to grow my Twitter network by liberally following back people that follow me, and following anyone that either RTs me, or replies to me. The only exception would be someone would someone that’s an obvious spammer. I think that method means I am following the people that are engaged in the type of activity I want to encourage.
What about you? How do you manage your network on Twitter? Would you be willing to reset your account and start over? I will say this: I would be completely in favor of Twitter removing all mention of how many followers someone has from the site. It’s mainly there to stroke egos, and doing so would make the site less attractive to those that are simply there to pad their numbers.
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