David’s Twitter Newbie Tip


Getting some followers.

If you are just discovering Twitter (as I was a short time ago – I’m still basically a newbie!) you’ve probably found that it gets much more interesting when you build up a group of followers. There are a lot of strategies around for doing this, including many schemes that offer to get you thousands of followers in a very short time. If you want to do this – go for it. Personally, I think it is better to build a network of people with similar interests to yourself; people you might actually want to have conversations with.

Here’s a strategy that I think works.

  • Provide some information in your profile. If anyone (other than a spam bot) is interested in becoming part of your network, they are going to want to get a feel for what you are all about. A quick one line intro, a photo and a link to your website or blog goes a long way.
  • Post a few tweets on subjects you are interested in. For me, I will usually not follow anyone who hasn’t made at least some posts.
  • Find some people with similar interests and follow them. A lot of the people you follow will follow you back – especially if you’ve taken care of the first two steps. If you look at someone’s profile and their numbers of followers and followed are pretty balanced you’ll know you are in with a good chance.
  • Join in the conversation. A really good thing to do is to get involved in some of the organized “chats” on Twitter. I’ll post more on these in a future Twitter Tip if you don’t yet know what these are. The one’s I like to take part in are #blogchat on Sunday and #smbiz chat on Tuesdays. There are a lot more to be found.
    If you find a good organized conversation with a subject that interests you, you’ll find a lot of people to follow and (if you take part) you’ll be followed too.
  • If you find something of interest on Twitter Retweet (RT) it. This lets more people see the interesting content and the originator of the material will usually thank you and often follow you. Here’s a good guide to ReTweeting.

You’ll find that once you get a few followers and start becoming active in the community, your number of followers will increase with little or no effort needed. I’d strongly suggest that you follow back people that take the trouble to follow you. I nearly always do except for the “get 10,000 followers by lunchtime” and “get rich quick while sitting on your bottom” crowd. It’s a good policy to always check out the bio of anyone you are thinking of following (see my first point at the start)

Most importantly of all, I think Twitter works best if you just want to network and have fun, rather than having an agenda.

If you are a Twitter user, how did you get started in building your network? Are there any great tips you could share?


  1. Justin Williams says

    i’m still a newbie. like many i started with familiar (famous) names and also started watching the local (you can use any search) feed scrolling by on tweetdeck. being an irreverant sarcastic SOB i would pic out a funny or way too seriuous one and tweet back a totally unexpected ironic or totally off-base reply. this is how i met every single one of the best people i know on twitter. they, of course, will intro you to all their favorite people and so on…i never try and build my follower base as i don’t see the point. i will respond from time to time to posts of those who i follow but who do not follow me – mostly famous people who get too many requests. so far no police have had to stepo in. (but hey, jessica alba tweeted me!!) one MAJOR piece of advice to newbies: be VERY careful of the words you choose in your posts!! there are programs that follow keywords and automatically add you to folks based on your use of them. for instance, i think i wrote something like “jesus man get a life” or something like that…next thing you know, lutheranbiblestudy and a half dozen others like them were following me. given my style, didn’t take them long to leave. don’t know what i did to get a fairly large gay following, or why escorts keep popping up, but when i told some dude “to saw-off both legs and replace them with broomsticks, gouge out both of your eyes and wear eyepatches, carry a bejeweled dagger and nail a live parrot to your shoulder”, you guessed it, i’m the darling of the exotic pet world. gotta love it

    • David says

      Hey Justin, thanks for the comment (I think!)

      You do make a good point – a lot of people do follow Tweeps based on keywords used in posts. As an example, I posted something about that Brogan bloke getting his barnet shaved (Barnet Fair = hair) and right away a bot that follows everything about the town of Barnet (in Hartfordshire) was right on my track.

      Take care and watch out for the parrot.

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