Common sense rules on who NOT to follow on Twitter
I try to do a spring cleaning of my twitter account periodically.
I usually try to follow people from not only within my domain, but with wide variety of domains and interest groups- though I must admit, I have mostly ‘my types’ that are following me and whom I tend to follow.
And while doing so, I have my own rules on who to follow and who Not to follow.
In case you subsribe to notifications of followers via email (and it is advisable to do so IMO in case you intend to grow your account organically)- you could set some qualifying criterion within the email itself. Twitter changed its notification format since some time- and do give some prelimiary information within the email itself.
When I receive an email notification, I look at certain indicators within the email message itself about the followers account, qualify, click to their profile- qualify again and then hit the follow button. I don’t want to follow potentially useless accounts and at the same time Love to follow those that are interesting.
- Updates to follower ratio. A very high number of followers but few tweet updates means the member has amassed followers using some dubious auto follow services. This means two things-
- The person has obvious business interests or spamming interests
- It is unlikely that I would be able to have any meaningful interaction with the member if they have thousands of followers
I avoid accounts with updates to follower percentage being between 1%-10%; though the guards are up till about 40%.
- The account name.
- Blatant announcement: Once you see a name like ‘moneyexpertz’, ‘homebasedincome’,'getrichquick’, ‘millionairebeautiful’ or any of those names- save your time. Unless you really think they can get you rich quick. Then you are OK. You can even stop wasting time reading this post.
Mr ‘FastRiches4you’ is giving away life changing million dollar worth products for just $29. Limited till next 48 hours only. First come first serve.
- Numerals in account name: Though many people do this because they were late comers to the ‘twitter name land rush’, but most overtly commercial interests use this tactics to project their business nature, artificial personality or just create fake accounts. Names like ‘panna5031′ raise clear suspicion. But use your judgement.
Maybe not so much ‘Nicole 88′- Nicole is a common name and it is likely they haven’t got their names. Keep the radar up though. Some spammer might want to project themselves as a young girl to get your attention.
- Profile Photo:
- In case of doubt on the previous parameters- this can be a give away. ‘Nicole88′ with a pic of a suggestive picture: The suggestive smile, the wet hair and the evocative eyes are a give away. Ditto for pics of men. Run.
- There is a difference between creative and tacky. The moment you see someone with their arms open, face in palms trying to look cute, clevage- or no pic at all- these are tell tell signs.
- Some accounts are actual people and not quite as overt. In that case, I actually go visit their accounts and randomly check tweets. You could know a lot by the tweets of a person. If all the tweets are just blatant sales calls or automated feeds or bogus text you are better of cancelling that noise from your ‘profile’.
- In the usual course of checking my twitter updates, I also keep a tab on who is sending seemingly useless tweets from time to time. And then filter.
- I personally also avoid ‘mentors’, ‘loose fat’ and generally- profiles that I don’t stand to gain anything from.
I do however enjoy profiles with a personality- even if they are ‘commerical’ profiles. I enjoy reading other blog posts and interesting link-outs. Again qualititave assessment rules.
Remember it is your choice more than anything else. Just like your choosing your friends in real life. But in today’s cluttered, commercial overkill world, it pays to be frugal sometimes.
OK one more thing- all account names used as examples are only that. Examples. I don’t know whether they exist in real or not at this point of time. So use your own judgement. But actually if you use multiple criterion as described above- you have a very good chance of identifying the wanted from the otherwise. So use multiple criterion not just one.
In case you are actually are the owner of one of the names used in the examples and are making an honest attempt at it, let me know and I’ll remove that example. But honestly- get rid of that name.
I have removed the tweet widget from my website- takes ages to load and all that appears by the time the tweets load is one big black box.
But you can follow me @shalabhpandey.
Thumbnail: beautiful depiction of Twitter overcapacity by Mykl Roventine