Regardless of the reason, you might feel a little special that someone decided to follow you. I know I always do, so I decided to examine some of the reasons someone might actually follow you or someone like you.
Imagine Twitter like a big party or club. Everyone is kind of dancing around aimlessly with no particular destination. Some people are already clustered with a group of friends. Some of them may even whisper all of their conversations in each other’s ears (private Twitter feeds), while others slowly make their way around the room getting phone numbers, buying people drinks, and winking at the pretty ones.
That last category of party-goer might approach you and say, “You don’t know me but...” So, imagine a twitter user named @youdontknowmebut, and he or she might finish the sentence with:
1. I think you’re smokin’ HOT!
If this is the reason people are following you on Twitter, that picture of you and your cat might be a little more revealing that you intended. Twitter pictures are small, and although some people upload large ones that you can click on to expand, most do not. They also probably have no idea what the bottom half of your body looks like or even if you have a bottom half to your body. To that end, they have no way of knowing if the person in the picture is even you. Still, it has to make you feel pretty good about yourself.
2. I need more followers
More often than not, someone on Twitter follows you hoping that you will follow back. That person may have no idea who you are and probably does not even care. You are a number, acquired to fill a quota. These people may have thousands of followers or may be following thousands of people and wondering why so few follow them back.
Some of them will wait to see if you follow them and then unfollow you. This is like exchanging friendship bracelets, but then as soon as they get home, they throw yours away. People like that cannot be trusted. On the other hand, some really like having lots of friends and will happily converse with you and all of their other 5,000 followers.
3. I want to spam you
These people are hoping you are from group number 2 and will follow them without considering the ramifications, simply to ensure they stay on your growing followers list. You will never actually have a conversation with them, and even if you do not follow them, they will still try to spam you.
These accounts often do not last long, and by the time you login to see who they are, their accounts may already be suspended or deleted. Spammers spread like viruses, so if you follow one, you are setting yourself up to be bombarded by thousands of others.
4. Twitter told me to follow you
These people may follow you because you have similar interests or because your tweets look interesting. It is not because you are popular. To be honest, they did not even know you existed until Twitter told them they might be interested in following you. These type of followers are always flattering, even though Twitter’s match-making process is all automated.
More than likely, these people follow others who follow you, and if you start getting a lot of these, you will form a good network of friends, colleagues, and/or associates. They will probably start adding you to lists (hopefully nice ones), and you may even get a seat at the cool table. Sometimes being guilty by association is a good thing.
There is a number 5 to this list, but you will not like it. It is reserved for those people who have no followers. If you are one of these, you are probably either a spammer or from the “I think you’re smokin’ hot” category. If you do actually have followers, enjoy your new followers, and make sure you treat them well.
Author Bio: Tavis J. Hampton is a writer for domain names company 34SP.com. You can follow him on Twitter @adibudeen.