Why I won’t follow everyone on Twitter

This is a guest post by Chris Guthrie. Check out our guest posting guidelines.

I’ve read the past few articles written about Twitter here on Blog Godown and I wanted to toss my hat into the ring as well with another perspective on Twitter. The articles I’m referring to include the debate over scheduling tweets or not and how to treat your Twitter followers. I don’t agree with everything that’s been said in these articles and wanted to provide my opinion as well to see what you think.

Why I won’t follow everyone on Twitter

I have a small number of followers at just over 100 as of this posting and I follow even less people at just 25 right now. The reason why I don’t follow everyone that follows me is not because I don’t feel grateful that they’ve cared enough to follow me, but because I don’t believe it’s possible to have a relationship with everyone of my followers. So rather than attempt to do it by following the 100 people that follow me I’d rather just set the precedence now that I won’t be able to follow everyone. Perhaps I’m not the best example because I only have 100 followers, but I believe my point still stands. Facebook sets a limit of 5,000 friends and although this is more likely due to a technical limitation I think it’s because they also believe you can’t truly have a personal connection to more than 5,000 people. Yes you might write a blog read by thousands and thousands of people but do you read their blogs too? Do you meet up with them at conferences and eat meals together? What can you truly do to maintain connection to your 1,000 followers? 10,000 followers? 100,000 followers? I don’t believe you can and in fact I know that the users with accounts like these do not.

The reason why utilities like Tweet Deck cropped up in the first place was that users needed a way to be able to manage the huge influx of information on Twitter. One of these problems was an inability to sort out which people you want to read updates from and which you don’t ever want to see. Now of course you can simply NOT follow everyone, but people don’t want to do this because they believe it’s not possible to get a very large group of followers if they don’t. So instead they create lists of people that they actually care to see updates from and the rest of their followers are just there to pad their stats. If you were to follow me on Twitter than I may follow you back, but I’d need to interact with you in some way or be connected to the stories that you write and share to consider following you. Otherwise what’s the point except to add another digit to my follower count?

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  • great comment, you have a point about the need to manage all these twitter followers. The people who i follow are excessive so yeah, maby i should cut back on the followers.

    Thanks
    .-= Peter´s last blog ..Do people really care about so called ‘new’ anymore? =-.

    • twitter management is really important, because you will end up with a lot of mess.
      Twitter lists are a way out, but these too become ineffective after some time.

  • There are more users i follow are not following me back.

    Bcoz of this i cant follow new people bcoz of twitter limit ratio…

    Its time to unfollow unfaithful followers…
    .-= sudharsan @ technoskillonline´s last blog ..TeraCopy – Copy all Files at Lightning Speed =-.

    • people who don’t follow you back may be the ones that are either celebrities or are the ones that get 1000 followers each day and it becomes difficult for them to follow each and every one.

      Wait for them to follow you back, or else unfollow them if you think they are of no value to you

  • it is really annoying sometimes these followers at twitter. I just try to manage and cut down some of them. Now, It is “unfollow time for me”. thank you for your point there.
    .-= Columbus Office Space´s last blog ..The Benefits of Early Lease Renewals and Tactics Available to Office Tenants in the Orange County Market =-.

  • It is really good one.Good points.Thanks for sharing.

  • Thanks for your slant on Twittering Chris. I’m new and am following nobody as yet, but I still don’t get it. If I follow 100 and each of those follow 100 am I being fed 10000 tweets? If so how could they reasonably be read let alone be clicked on?

    Surely the purpose of Twitter must be to put forth or exchange information first not solely to get traffic. Yet I see that it must be working.
    .-= Grampa Ken for social change´s last blog ..Consumption and the Environment =-.

  • I made the mistake following everyone right in the beginning, I quickly learned how useless and annoying that mistake was. Now I only follow those Twitter users that I have something in common with and that interact.
    .-= Extreme John´s last blog ..UFC 111 Recap =-.

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  • i dont follow people unless they have something to say i’m interested in
    .-= Myrtle Beach apartments´s last blog ..Pawleys Island Apartments Rentals =-.

  • I was hoping that I’d have a few people that would disagree with me so I could argue with them, but alas that hasn’t been the case 😀
    .-= Chris Guthrie´s last blog ..InfoLinks Review – In Text Advertising Case Study Part 1 =-.

    • ha.. well, perhaps you coincidentally reached a crowd that realizes quality networking is far more beneficial than quantity. Sorry but you got my vote too in this topic. I don’t mind following people but I’ll always do an overview check beforehand. 🙂

      Nice meeting you by the way, Chris. Thanks for the enlightenment.

      @wchingya
      Social/Blogging Tracker
      .-= Ching Ya´s last blog ..How to Manage Busy Social Networking Life with Multiple Projects at Hand =-.

      • Yes, I agree with ching, that there is a unanimous thing that following quality is better over quantity

  • I thought it was going to be some boring old post, but it really compensated for my time. I will post a link to this page on my blog. I am sure my visitors will find that very useful.

  • Amy

    I made the mistake following everyone right in the beginning, I quickly learned how useless and annoying that mistake was. Now I only follow those Twitter users that I have something in common with and that interact.
    .-= Extreme John´s last blog ..UFC 111 Recap =-.

  • The problem always arises, that if you do indeed follow everyone that follows you, you end up and mass of spammers and tweeters trying to sell you rubbish, so it maybe ok when you first start on Twitter, but as you grow wiser, you decide that it wasn’t the best move!
    .-= Karen @ Blazing Minds´s last blog ..How To Write a Twitter Bio That Gains You More Followers =-.

  • I often look where people Tweet from of I look at their Tweets and only see from API or Twitterfeed then they are gone because I know that they just basically Bots
    .-= roezer´s last blog ..Xfce Clear Browser History is Blank Google Chrome =-.

  • If I were a search engine I would discount a source with thousands of links but no interaction as a lot of fluff, but I don’t know how they work.

  • Very true, its practically impossible to follow every celeb on twitter. All it does is messes up ur timeline.

    At any given point of time, following 100 people, i think its a good idea. Shud give a serious thought to it!