Although I am a fan of automating just about anything you can, I think when it comes to crafting a Twitter stream and following, you have to be discriminating. Twitter auto follow back practices lead to meaningless lists of people collectively ignoring each other.
Twitter Auto Follow Back Creates Fictional Authority
When your followers are looking at a potential friend and deciding whether to follow, they can see whether you already follow that user. This equates to a level of endorsement from you.
That is why I choose to pass on potential followers that I feel are not a good fit for me and my followers. If someone will never see me as a person of influence, then I feel I lose nothing if I lose her as a follower.
On the other hand, I believe I will lose influence if I do not exercise restraint about those I follow. Potential followers judge you by the company you keep.
My Twitter Math
Being mathematically inclined, I see my equations this way:
Lose low quality, non-engaged follower = 0 effect on influence
Keep low quality follower by follow back = (- X) effect on influence
Others who have a different Twitter strategy or who believe their influence results from their enormous Twitter followings may have a more aggressive follow style than me because their equations are different. It’s a big Twitter universe with room for all kinds.
Some folks on Twitter auto follow back and then use lists to discriminate privately against reading certain followers. That is one way of managing things, but not my way.
If I am not interested, my honesty should not hurt anyone’s feelings, especially since we all understand that a follow doesn’t mean someone is reading you.
Your Twitter Strategy
How strict you will be about the friends you choose to follow and what criteria you will apply are highly individual matters best kept private. You have a strategy for your Twitter account, presumptions perhaps about how Twitter should be used, so you should devise some rules for choosing your friends in keeping with your strategy.
What about you? How do you manage Twitter? Auto follow back or selective discrimination? I would love to read your comments below.
Please contact me today if you are interested in learning how a freelance writer can help you manage your Twitter and other social media.