So, as per a post at Facebook, I've done the “Twitter bankruptcy” thing. Was planning on a blog post re my reasons after I learned some of the implications. Round 1 comes a bit early (and I explain why):
I originally set my Twitter account to follow anyone who followed me. Reason why (we'll discuss if smart move a bit later here) was simple: the general teaching on Twitter says it's polite to follow anyone who follows you. Whether or not I agreed with the concept, if someone's first impression of me was that I was being rude, what chance do I have? As a result, I followed back everyone (automatically).
Now, when you have 18,000 followers (yes, my numbers have gone done, more on that later) there is simply no way you can track read it all. No matter what social media strategies you have, it's just a numbers issue.
So, I had an account that was simply designed (with automation) to keep people “happy.”
How did I “track” Twitter? Easy, I set up a phantom account of people I really wanted to track and then I set up several tracking feeds and get automatically updated whenever the terms I'm interested are mention in Twitter – whether I'm “following” the person or not.
Why the move? What I was doing wasn't really doing anyone any good. Clicks from the Twitter feed were pathetically low (percentage wise at least – many many times as many clicks from my 2,200 Facebook Fans) and it simply wan't painting a ‘real' picture of what was going on online. In addition, there are some fascinating SEO implications of a realistic Twitter following that I wanted to explore. Also, I want to take my Twitter stream a little more seriously and I want to get a real accurate understanding of what's going on.
What I've learned so far? Unfollowing everyone wasn't as easy as I thought it was going to be. In addition, when I started – 17,968 were following me and the number is currently down to 16,952. There is no way 1000 people in the last few days have gone through this stuff by hand. What we have here is a lot of people running the popular “unfollow anyone who doesn't follow me” scripts. That isn't about communication is it?
Anybody want to guess what the “robots” are going to do to my follower account in the next months? Should I care at all?
ALSO LEARNED – Not all Twitter tracking is created equal. That quote from the graphic above wasn't picked up by either MarketMetSuite, HootSuite or Search.Twitter.com (yes, I use all of those and more – I'm very serious about Twitter). I caught it from, of all things, the iPhone App Boxcar. This morning, it was retweeted by @TonyMackGD and that was picked up accordingly. Was planning on writing this in a few days but once the retweet happened, it was time to deal.
Smart move? Time will tell. As you can tell from the graphic above, some people are thinking I'm making the wrong move. That's ok, it wouldn't be the first time.
What am I doing next? I'm actually intending on doing a lot more with Twitter now that I have a “real” account. I want to do a lot of content curating and real tracking of a real audience.
We're less than a week into this grand experiment and I certainly will share more of what I've learned along the way but that's why I'm doing what I'm doing.
So, did I make the “right” move? I'd love your thoughts below.