The reasons why people follow me on Twitter

In the pre­vi­ous post, I star­ted to answer the ques­tion “Why people fol­low me on Twit­ter.” I went through some back­ground, reviewed my tweet his­tory, and wrote a bit about my exper­i­ence using Twitter’s Dir­ect Mes­sage (DM) to ask the ques­tion.

This fol­low-on post gets into the actu­al reas­ons and num­bers.

Over the three months I con­duc­ted my highly inform­al research,  I’d asked new fol­low­ers the fol­low­ing ques­tion:

Hi (fol­low­er name here), thanks for fol­low­ing me. This is NOT an auto-DM, I’m live :)and track­ing ‘reach’ and was won­der­ing how you ‘found’ me in Twit­ter?

Over that time, I’d gained about 300 fol­low­ers, many of them ‘busi­ness’ accounts with ‘great money mak­ing oppor­tun­it­ies’ or people look­ing for ‘oth­ers who are motiv­ated to be suc­cess­ful’.

Oth­er were the gems I was hop­ing for. These new fol­low­ers add value daily, offer­ing new and insight­ful opin­ions. They’re the reas­on I check ever new fol­low­er, read­ing their pro­file and review­ing their tweets. I want to be exposed to this new per­spect­ive or new inform­a­tion, who wouldn’t?

But enough back­ground and pre­amble, on to the data 🙂

There were many reas­ons people fol­low me, and I’ve para­phrased and cat­egor­ized them to make meas­ure­ment easi­er. But, in a few cases, I’m also includ­ing some of the com­ments (unat­trib­uted, sorry, I didn’t cap­ture that data) as I found the response par­tic­u­larly enlight­en­ing.

Com­mon Fol­low­er: 30
eg:I fol­low @ChrisBrogan, my new fol­low­er found me by stalk­ing Chris’ fol­low­ers:

  • Fol­lowed a fake Seth­God­in togeth­er 🙂
  • Listen to FIR
  • I found you through the aidg twit­ter page and i thought your stuff looked inter­est­ing.
  • Most times my new fol­lows are from people I see my friends hav­ing cool con­ver­sa­tions with.

I tweeted men­tion­ing their com­pany or organ­iz­a­tion or industry (via Twits­coop, keyword search,  etc): 14

  • Red Cross
  • Twit­ter search for Cana­dian Space Agency
  • I found your blog through the post “Tools to tame twit­ter”. Then did a search on social men­tion and twit­ter for brad­gri­er
  • You men­tioned social media mon­it­or­ing, a top­ic that I track. I’m CEO of Radian6 — we provide such a mon­it­or­ing plat­form.
  • First I found you on a keyword search. Some­thing cre­at­ive like “social media”. Then you seemed funny, so I was sold 😉
  • I saw your post about the US Embassy in Ott­awa, thought it was inter­est­ing they are get­ting into social media — that is my area of interest
  • found a tweet you had about an art­icle on CIO.com

Friend/interest align­ment: 11
We have com­mon friends or interest

  • I was reading/tracking an inter­est­ing con­ver­sa­tion which led to you. So I fol­lowed.
  • Searched on Wii
  • I found you because you are fol­low­ing a cof­fee roast­er pro­fes­sion­al, who in turn, is linked to gim­me­cof­fee
  • Applic­a­tion (twautor.com) found and auto added me.

Look­ing for people using twit­ter in my/specific City/Geographic Region of interest: 11

  • Lis­ted on Edmon­ton twit­ter élite

Found me in a dir­ect­ory: 9
Twel­low, Twit­ter Grader, Mr. Tweet etc

  • found you at http://twannabe.com where my influ­ence was joy­wang and your name came up.
  • @bgrier i found you by punch­ing MrsTweet in the stom­ach until MrTweet coughed up your info @SaltyDroid

Recip­roc­al: 6
fol­low­ing me back after I fol­low them

Fri­day Fol­low (recom­mend someone to fol­low): 6
#Fri­day­Fol­low is a Twit­ter meme where you recom­mend to your fol­low­ers, oth­er Twit­ter mem­bers that you think your fol­low­ers should fol­low.

Added me because we par­ti­cip­ated in the same online activ­ity / chat etc: 5

Ran­dom: 3
Stumbled, etc

For­got / not sure: 3

Vis­ited my blog and then fol­lowed me: 2

  • I have a Google alert for “asus eeepc”. Your blog post about Easy Peasy on the eeepc came up. I read the art­icle, liked it, and fol­lowed you

Retweet pickup: 2
These are people who said they fol­low me because I retweeted (RT) their tweet.

Added via Webin­ar signup (for their product) with my Twit­ter account reques­ted: 1

  • SM2 — techrigy

Since I’m such a suck­er for charts, here’s anoth­er look at the data

So, what do I con­clude from that?

Well, it’s inter­est­ing that the largest seg­ment (twice the size of the next seg­ment) con­sisted of 30 fol­low­ers who found me by stalk­ing oth­er people’s fol­low­er list. Heck, it’s how I find inter­est­ing people, so it makes sense that oth­er use the same tac­tic.

Con­versely, I find it inter­est­ing that only 2 respond­ents fol­lowed me after vis­it­ing my blog. Does that mean that Blog read­ers are not neces­sar­ily inclined to be twit­ter users? Or do blog read­ers have dif­fer­ent needs?

Oth­er large groups include people in my geo­graph­ic region and people with shared interest who found me via dir­ect­or­ies. Those two seem rather self explan­at­ory.

But what do  you think? Does the data above make sense to you? Or not..and why? Your com­ments and opin­ions are appre­ci­ated.

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9 Replies to “The reasons why people follow me on Twitter”

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