The answer is BOTH! Having hundreds of thousands of followers must be nice. But we all know that the depth of the relationships you maintain with your tweeple is paramount.
This article will reveal five great Twitter tools that will help you find and engage with quality Twitter followers.
Notice I mentioned “depth.” However, there must be another side to this coin. The reach. And if you want to have “reach” on Twitter (getting 10+ retweets, for example) on regular basis, chances are you will need a large number of followers.
This article will focus on getting you those numbers.
Specifically, I want to explore how to generate new followers, how to manage your newly found follower surplus and how to turn those shallow relationships into deeper ones using the top 5 most indispensable Twitter tools.
#1: Blast Follow
Editors note: BlastFollow is no longer operational due to changes in Twitter authentication requirements. To make up the difference, we suggest you see a post about another magnificent Twitter tool.
Editors note: This tool, if abused, will get you temporarily banned from Twitter. Do not follow large groups (1000 or more) or multiple hash tags at once. We have received reports from readers that they were banned because they “over did” this tool.
How does this help YOU gain more followers? Because of the Law of Reciprocity.
The law of reciprocity is a basic mammalian urge. When apes groom each other, they are engaging in the Law of Reciprocity. In fact, if you take a trip to your local zoo, you will notice that the most social apes are the best-groomed as well.
I will go as far as to say that the reason Twitter is so popular is because the human urge to reciprocate is such a strong driving force behind our actions.
Twitter is a Law of Reciprocity platform. You follow me; it’s only fair that I follow you back.
Note: Chris has changed his own policy due to spam, but the basic idea for the rest of us still stands.
Here* is a nifty list of Twitter superstars who WILL follow you back.
*This link was removed on 11/12/15 due to the fact that the post is no longer hosted on on a live website.
Tweepi allows you to unfollow those who do not reciprocate.
The only thing I would add is to be careful not to unfollow someone you would prefer to continue to follow.
Why would you want to follow someone who doesn’t follow you back? One reason could be that their tweets are super-interesting.
The overall strategy for using Blast Follow and Tweepi is to blast follow 100-200 people today and give them a week or so to follow back. If they don’t reciprocate, clean them out with Tweepi. Then repeat.
OK. What’s next?
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I hope that I don’t have to sell you on the notion of maintaining a presence on Twitter. One tool that is indispensable in maintaining a presence is twAitter, which allows you to schedule your tweets in advance.
Now, that’s not all that amazing on its own. Many tools allow you to schedule your tweets. Social Oomph comes to mind.
twAitter is unique in that it allows us to rotate and repeat our tweets. Social Oomph allows for a similar functionality (and a lot more), but it’s a premium service for which you’d have to pay. twAitter, on the other hand, is free.
Why would you want to repeat your tweets?
Twitter is a drive-by platform. Most people login for 10-20 minutes at a time and unless they see your tweet in that time, chances are they will never see it. Unless you repeat yourself.
Don’t abuse this awesome power.
Guy Kawasaki repeats his tweets four times with at least several hours in between. I repeat my tweets every few days but do not limit myself to four.
Now that you have thousands of followers, you will need to organize them and keep an eye on the really interesting ones. In comes TweetDeck.
TweetDeck allows you to create “panels” based on your Twitter lists or others. I have lists/panels for my dog people, social media people, friends, interesting and RT-worthy tweeps, etc. They all get their own list/panel, which makes it really easy to follow their timeline.
Without TweetDeck, this would be an overwhelming and time-consuming prospect.
TweetChat allows you to isolate the conversation based on the hashtag.
This is a two-in-one kind of tool.
It not only helps you generate followers, but it does this by first creating a familiarity and depth before the follow itself occurs. How?
Hashtags (#) and the way they can be used on Twitter are a great big untapped resource for many Twitter residents.
Here’s an example:
If you tune into Twitter every Monday night around 9 pm EST, you might see an excessive appearance of the #dogtalk hashtag.
The #dogtalk crew brings in interesting dog people every week and interviews them about their goings-on. Many folks tune in using TweetChat to follow and participate in the conversation.
If you’ve participated in the conversation and actually contributed in some small way, a funny thing happens.
Other participants see you as interesting and decide to follow you. The right thing to do now is to reciprocate, of course.
Bonus #6: Super-Secret Bonus Twitter Tool
This tool is the best, most important tool of them all. It works in an entirely different way than any other tools we’ve mentioned.
Here’s the big secret. It’s you.
Be useful. Be interesting. Be compelling.
Take this post as an example. Do you think that this post will generate followers for me? Of course it will. A bonus here is that the relationship has started “on the right foot.” I’m a real person (a somewhat rare commodity on Twitter), I have something useful to share (at least I hope it will be useful to you) and hopefully it will compel you to check me out and be my friend on Twitter.
Do you use any of these Twitter tools? Got some to add? Leave us your comments in the box below.