If so, you may officially count your chickens. And the egg to the left will hatch.
And if you haven’t already read this related post, I’ve already told you why people follow on Twitter. So this new post should solidify your confidence on Twitter and make sure you are maximizing use of this platform.
The list below is in my head as the criteria I use to follow back or ignore those who have followed me in the last few days. Everyone gets a look and a % get followed. And it is a very quick decision.
So here are the 10 reasons you won’t be followed (i.e. the things you can fix right now). But if you have just a few minutes today, make sure you at least do the first 3. These are awfully important!
1. No real name I’m not (generally) on Twitter to follow businesses. I want to follow people. Twitter even suggests in your profile set up to “Enter your real name, so people you know can recognize you”. Why are you hiding behind the business? I rarely follow someone (or something) on Twitter if I don’t have a name. THE FIX: Make sure that you have your real name somewhere. If multiple people tweet on behalf of your company, tell us who they are in the bio.
2. Lousy or no bio Either you don’t have a bio, it is written 100% in a language that I don’t speak or it contains nothing that anyone could deem as “relevant or not” in their life. Your bio is the filter I use to quickly rule you in or out. I can still decide not to follow someone because they are not immediately relevant (a plumber in Oklahoma, for example) but if that plumber at least tells me who they are and what they care about, I can make a good, quick decision. THE FIX: Write something that helps us quickly categorize you. It doesn’t have to be keyword heavy. And if you want to add a dose of personality that never hurts.
3. No picture or avatar I hate eggs on Twitter. Eggs say new to Twitter, a risky follow, etc. They might be great people but they also might represent someone who will never drop a single tweet in the stream. So if you don’t have a picture, you are giving people a big reason to ignore you. While I always prefer a photo, a fun avatar can work as long as I get a name (see point 1 above). You can see my @FixBuildnDrive account for an example. THE FIX: Let us see your smiling face. And, if not, let us see something that represents you or your business so we can have enough data to make a good decision in about 2-3 seconds.
OK, now let’s take a break and look at a few examples. Here are the last five people who followed me on Twitter this morning. Reviewing the three points above, which of these five do you think I will follow?
This is such a typical set of new followers. How do I decide? Well, as I said in the “why people follow” post linked to above, it is first about relevance for me. So the only one that is directly relevant to @TimsStrategy is @WATRL. The only other person in this list that I would consider is @joshuaekwo because he offers his name, a photo and a bio that tells me something. But I worry about “network marketer”. Now my job is to click on his profile, see his recent tweets. I’d also like to know where lives. My quick research tells me he lives in Nigeria and has a website helping people find avenues to wealth.
So what did I do? What would you do? Watch the video below to see my decision.
Did we make the same decision? Tell me how you would decide differently in the comments . . .
So, after that example, what are other reasons why people don’t follow you back? Here are 7 more:
4. No personality Some people freeze up on Twitter. They forget to be human. And while many people hate the personal “I just ate a cheeseburger” update, without any personal updates I only get the “business you”. So be interesting. Because many of us will look at your recent posts before following – looking for signs of a heart, not just a brain. THE FIX: Either in your bio, your photo or tweets, be real. Make fun of yourself, help others do something better, use a lot of smiley faces. Whatever you can do to shine a light on who you really are. Use fun or informative hash tags. #lookingforapulse
5. No conversation If I see you are using Twitter to broadcast new blog posts, share pithy quotes and otherwise blast out self-serving content, I am far less likely to follow. If you aren’t talking to others, the odds aren’t good that you’ll talk to me on Twitter. THE FIX: Make good use of the @ symbol. Sending @ messages (public messages to one or more people), re-tweeting (RT @) others who’ve shared content that is relevant to you or your followers.
6. No consistency As you noticed in the video, when I am unsure on a follow, I will look at your recent tweets. Even in just the three recent tweets Twitter shows me in the snapshot I can learn enough to make a decision. THE FIX: Tweet daily if you can but overall try not to let too much time go by between tweets. Need help? Try my Twitter Daily Checklist. It helps you be more purposeful and regular.
7. No access I’m not sure why people protect their tweets. Look for the little lock symbol next to their name. To me, that is like a “don’t follow” sign. I will ask to be approved if it is someone I know. If not, I won’t follow. Maybe that’s what you wanted anyway. THE FIX: Stop protecting your tweets. Twitter was not built as a private chat room. And if you want people to follow, you’ll have to accept more than just your target. You will kiss a few frogs but you’ll open the potential for a young prince or princess too.
8. You use scary words or acronyms in your bio Words like “network marketer” and “wealth creation” or acronyms like “MLM (multi-level marketing)” and “FOREX (foreign exchange/currency trading)”. These are the red flags on Twitter. Because they indicate the nature of our looming relationship (i.e. you selling me something). THE FIX: Check your bio for words that might push people away and, if found, remove them. It’s OK to have something to offer on social media platforms, but how about a little romance first?
9. You make false promises Phrases like “I can make you rich” or “let me teach you my secrets to wealth” lead me to believe that you are self-serving. Not a big stretch, right? If it appears you are trying to lure me into anything other than a helpful online relationship, well you’ve lost me before you had me. THE FIX: Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Really.
10. Don’t ruin it with an auto DM. If following you was touch and go, but I decided to do it anyway, don’t make me un-follow you with an immediate automated DM like “so excited to connect with you” or “check out my e-book for free”. Automated direct messages on Twitter stink. THE FIX: If you have one, turn it off. It’s like emailing all of your connections on LinkedIn with a “special offer”. Don’t do it.
So there you have it. What’s your view on this?
How do you decide who to follow and who to (gulp) ignore?
Written by: Tim Tyrell-Smith
Tags: decided | example | fix | followed | odds | people | personal | real names | reason | reasons | tweet | Twitter
Categories: Social Networking