Why don’t I have more followers?

“Why don’t I have more followers?” I hear this from people often when discussing Twitter. It’s not surprising. Checking my follower count is largely a self gratifying, narcissistic exercise. After all why wouldn’t I want to believe all of those people are hanging on every tweet just hoping I will use all 140 characters, each clearly as valuable is gold. While I am certainly no expert on building a massive number of followers I have learned a lot by watching those who do successfully use Twitter as a medium to reach the masses, their masses. Here are three questions that might help you emulate the masters of Twitter:

  • When was the last time you looked at your tweets? This is one of the most revealing exercises for me. I set up a feed of my Twitter stream into Flipboard. Periodically I read it and ask myself “Is the content compelling enough that I would follow me?” This exercise can prove painfully illuminating.
  • When was the last time you provided value in your stream? A good measure of this was when was the last time someone thanked you for something you did on Twitter. There is a select group of people who I read their tweets daily. To stay on that list you have to provide value. I imagine it’s the same for you.
  • When was the last time you followed and interacted? It’s called social media for a reason. Unless you are a mega star or you some other platform from which people would know you, then, and this may be shocking to you, folks are probably not mindlessly searching Twitter to find your genius. You may have to actually engage them first.

At the end of the day I don’t think the number of followers you have is necessarily indicative of social media power. I follow certain people who have 1/10th the number of followers that I have but often times when they tweet their followers engage at rate I am quite envious of. That is power in social media.


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