To Follow Back, or Not to Follow Back, that is the question! But don’t read Hamlet to find the answer – things didn’t end well for the Danish Prince. But, To Follow or Not to Follow, is an important question for anyone trying to generate traffic, and build a good reputation, through Social Media.
There are several factors to consider when deciding if you should Follow someone back, when that person has just started Following you. Basically you need to think about whether you really want this new Follower of you to be added to your own list of ‘People I Follow’.
Will Following them add value to my Twitter reputation? Will they be able to provide me with high value leads and links to high value Content via my own Twitter Stream?
Factors to Consider.
If you are using Social Media primarily to promote yourself, your blog or your products, there has to be a good marketing reason why you decide to Follow anyone. And I don’t think that Following Back someone, just because they started Following you, is a good enough reason to routinely Follow back anyone.
And if your new Follower is a serious online marketer, (and has not decided to Follow you only in order to outscore everyone else with high number, low value, Twitter stats), they will have just thought through these same questions themselves….and decided, ‘Yes. This person (you) will add value to my ‘People I Follow List’, and hence my Twitter Stream – so yes, I will Follow them (you)’.
This assessment process is covered in more detail in the post What is Your Twitter Attractiveness Rating & How To Boost It.
A High Twitter Reputation Gives Us High Twitter
People will only decide to Follow us on Twitter, if they find us Attractive in some way – like most things in marketing, it’s a ‘what’s in it for me’ situation. If we are serious about being an Attractive Twitter source for others, and therefore attracting a big List of Twitter Followers, we have to build a good online Twitter Reputation first.
Our reason for Deciding if we should Follow someone or Not Follow someone, should be based on the potential value that the person we Follow can bring to us, and through us, to our own Followers.
If we only Follow people who are likely to bring High Value leads to us, and we promote these leads to our own Followers, we increase our own Value in the eyes of others. We have increased Twitter Attractiveness Rating. Then more people will want to Follow us, and so on, until we have thousands of Twitterers clamoring to join our Followers List – which is good news for us!
Take Home Message
You should only Follow Back someone, if you would Follow them anyway, even if they were not Following you, first.
So how does anyone decide who is worth Following or Following Back?
Broadly speaking, the 4 main factors that we ought to consider, can be thought of as
1. Relevance: they must be in the same Niche market as you
2. Quality & Value: their usefulness to you if you Follow them
3. Their Followers/Following Ratio** – more on this in next article
4. Frequency & Number of Tweets – the least important stat – more on this in next article
My next article will cover in detail, how these 4 main factors above can be used to decide who to Follow on Twitter (or Google Plus, or Facebook)…or not to Follow.
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