Who should you be following on Twitter?


News stories break on Twitter and reactions to those happen almost immediately. This is why it’s important for you to follow the right type of people.

So how do you target relevant accounts? And what benefit does this have for your business?

Why follow?  

Followers bring you a lot of value, link you to articles to read and educate you.

You’re probably thinking, so how many followers should I have? What is a “good amount” of followers? 100? 1,000, 10,000? We get asked this question ALL the time. And the answer is tricky because it’s completely subjective.

While it’s great to have a lot of followers (more followers equals more social reach and therefore more eyes on your brand and key messages), this is no good if the followers aren’t genuine. You may often come across spam/fake or irrelevant accounts.

There seems to be some unwritten rule that the more followers you have, the more follower-worthy you are. People are more likely to follow an account that already has a lot of followers and are tweeting regularly. And this can be incredibly daunting for businesses that are just starting out with less than 100 followers and feel they’ll never be “Twitter famous.”

We usually set a KPI for our clients to gain 30 new followers each month and so far that seems to be a reasonable target, and we see a steady audience increase over time. Because there’s no real “quick fix” to genuinely build up your follower base.

A popular method is the “follow back” strategy. The idea is that you follow people who are your ideal target audience – and if you’re doing your job by posting relevant and engaging content that they’re interested in, they’ll probably follow you back. You can usually expect to see half of the people you follow to follow you back.

It’s quite easy (yet time consuming) to follow a whole load of random people in the hope that they will follow you back. But like I addressed above, there’s little point if these aren’t your ideal customers. Plus, if you go too overboard Twitter will stop you from following any more. This is commonly known as the “2K Wall” – once you follower over 2,000 accounts, you won’t be able to follow anyone until your follower amount is roughly equal to the number of accounts you have followed.

Finding your audience

Thankfully, there are tools out there to help you find out who you should be following on social media and give you an insight into who your current followers are.

Buzzsumo: Buzzsumo is a great tool to find the key influencers in your industry by topic or username. You can filter by location (e.g. UK) and by type, such as: bloggers, influencers, companies, journalists, or regular people. You can also sort profiles by relevancy, average retweets, domain authority, number of followers, page authority, reply ratio and retweet ratio.

FollowerWonk: FollowerWonk allows you to search profiles by keyword, name, location and URL and the results can be exported to xls or csv for excel.

Twitter: Twitter’s “people search” feature allows you to easily search for existing profile accounts for you to follow but it is limited to keywords.

Twitter’s free analytics platform is a free to use tool with which you can analyse your existing followers based on interest and gender. Our data shows that most of our followers are interested in business news, tech news and marketing and is quite evenly split between male (57%) and female (43%). From this you can get a good idea of who your followers are and what they want you to tweet about.

Final thoughts

A great social media presence is essential to businesses. Potential customers and consumers are looking for social media accounts that are informative and entertaining. They want accounts that are good conversationalists but will also actually listen to their needs. Essentially, your target audience is looking for your social channel to bring value to their lives in some way.

Are you struggling to build up your follower base on Twitter or perhaps you have any top tips you’d like to share? Fire over a tweet to @RDPRtweets – we’d love to hear your thoughts!

And if you’d like a more in-depth process on optimising your company social profiles or need some help on your social media strategy, be sure to get in touch.

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Kayleigh Stevens

Kayleigh Stevens

  • Content Creative
  • Roland Dransfield