Twitter Test: It’s easy to increase your number of followers but does it provide any value?

twitter-bird-2-300x300It seems that nonstop on Twitter people will follow you with the hope that you will auto-follow them back. Their goal is to just increase the raw number of followers they have. These new followers may or may not have anything in common with them… even worse they may not even be real users (many are just bots).

With all of the focus around the number of followers on Twitter I deiced to attempt an experiment to find out 2 pieces of information. The first goal was to figure out how simple is it to increase your number of Twitter followers using this “spammy” method. The second goal was to figure out if there is any value in increasing your followers in this way.

I conducted this test over a 20 hour period from the time when I began adding followers to when I took the final count. I started the test by finding a Twitter account with a massive number of followers that was clearly not providing any value back to it’s followers. The account I found (I will leave the name out for now) had over 50k followers, was following about the same number of people, and had a total of 3 tweets. This was clearly not an account that had 50k followers because of those 3 interesting tweets.

I started by adding followers who were all ready following this account. In total I followed 930 people in about 1 hour. As I did this the number of people following me increased… quickly. By the end of my 20 hour testing period I had received 506 new followers. This gives me a 54.408% return on the amount of new followed received VS new followers added.

Followers added – 930
Followed back – 506
% followed back – 54.408%

The Bad

Ok, so this was much higher than I expected to receive in return but here is bad news… when I started looking at the new people following me it turns most were just spam accounts. The ones that were real people had very little in common with me and did not actually care to follow me. I tried to engage with these new followers the way I normally would with anyone else but received very little response.

To make matters worse over the next few days the number of these new people following me took a tumble. I did not track how many of them dropped off but I would guess it was over 50% of the total followers added (506).

Final Thoughts

Is it easy to increase your number of followers?
Yes, very easy. If your goal was to simply add followers then focus on that and you’ll have 50-100k followers in no time.

Was there is any value in adding these new followers?
Very very little… it would have been none but I did find a couple great new people during this test (this is 2 or 3 out of 500+ new followers).

The bottom line is that if your trying to grow a community, build your brand, or meet interesting new people then this is absolutely not the way to go about doing it. Creating interesting content still wins….

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  • Anonymous

    I stand convicted. Earlier in the year I spent a great deal of time mindlessly following people in order to gain a great deal of followers. It was a huge waste of time. My account became filled with a bunch of B.S. tweats that I had no interest in. Now, I am slowly undoing the damage…..

    - Ryan

  • ryannagy

    I stand convicted. Earlier in the year I spent a great deal of time mindlessly following people in order to gain a great deal of followers. It was a huge waste of time. My account became filled with a bunch of B.S. tweats that I had no interest in. Now, I am slowly undoing the damage…..

    - Ryan

  • http://thenextbigtechthing.com Charles

    Ryan,

    It is a pain to unfollow all these users… one easy method I would recommend to mass unfollow is to use a service like Twitter Karma – http://dossy.org/twitter/karma/

  • http://thenextbigtechthing.com Charles

    Ryan,

    It is a pain to unfollow all these users… one easy method I would recommend to mass unfollow is to use a service like Twitter Karma – http://dossy.org/twitter/karma/

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