Success & Prosperity Blog

Confessions of a Twitter Snob

By Randy Gage in Critical Thinking, Success.

Wow!  What a response to the Twitter Manifesto I posted last time.  I’m very grateful to the hundreds of people that ReTweeted it. It became one of the most ReTweeted posts in the world, and even made the front page at Retweetist. Lots of other blogs picked it up and linked to it as well.

If I would have known that it was going to generate so many thousands of visitors and links, I probably would have titled it more appropriately.  Although I have to give mad love to @SherKro who actually called it the  “What Not to Wear” in Twitterville when she ReTweeted it.  Boy am I pissed I didn’t think of that.

More than 100 of you posted comments below it, with some great insights as well.  My post was not meant to be a complete how to work with Twitter tutorial.  But a lot of the comments have helpful details on all that, like how to use hash tags and other applications.  If you haven’t already, read through them for some good information.

Here is some other follow up information that may help you as well…

I got a couple people chastising me for being a Twitter snob, because I don’t follow back everyone that follows me.  Guilty as charged.  Even Eric Worre made a tweet yesterday saying that he thought people who do this are arrogant and no one is that important.   But I think he was probably imbibing a little too much of @garyvee’s beverage offerings!

Now I know there is a school of thought that you should follow everyone that follows you, and I’ve heard this Twitter snob knock before.  But if you are an author, speaker, celeb or other very visible person, this just isn’t practical. And it doesn’t have anything to do with me being a snob or arrogant – not that I’m denying being either.

I got 700 new followers Friday alone.  On a slow day now, I’m adding 300 or 400 a day, and I’m really just getting started on all this.  If I follow all those people, I would need a staff of ten just to screen through the tweets.   And the truth is, it doesn’t make any sense for them or me.  Some of those profiles deal exclusively with college scholarships (which I don’t need, since I’m a HS dropout and rich), Christmas decorations (which I don’t do, since I’m such a bitter, demented person), and a shocking number are devoted exclusively to coffee (which I don’t drink).  There are profiles devoted to soap operas, motherhood, and printed in languages I can’t even read.  And that’s not even taking into account the vacuous twits, MLM morons, or other terminally boring people I mentioned in the first manifesto.

Now I’m on TweetDeck and I could easily follow everyone following me, and lead those woeful souls to think I’m reading their tweets, even though I’m filtering them out.  But I’d rather just be honest about it.

Now for some of you, following everyone that follows you may make sense…

If the numbers aren’t too daunting, you’re looking to meet lots more people, or you’re trying to assuage feelings of insecurity by amassing lots of online friends, go for it.  The purpose of my original post was on the most profitable ways to monetize web 2.0 sites.  And since I’m such a money-grubbing capitalist, I wrote about the best way I know to do that.

In the last week I’ve received gorgeous four-color catalogs in the mail from a company offering cigars & humidors, and mail order wine.  Both were very well done, with great copy and good layout.  But I don’t smoke or drink, so no matter how much money they spend or how effective they design these catalogs, they are still wasting their money mailing them to me.

Now it doesn’t “cost” you anything to follow people and there’s no doubt that some will follow you, just because you follow them.  And there are many on Twitter that just follow hundreds of people a day, figuring a good percentage will automatically follow them back.  And that will add to your numbers.  @guykawasaki follows 80,000 and 75,000 follow him back.

If you build a huge follower base and start tweeting about anything and everything, you’ll get ReTweeted more often and that will get your page out there and you’ll pick up yet more followers.  So I’m not saying it doesn’t work.  It’s just not something I’m interested in doing.  But if you want to, knock yourself out.

I’m an old school direct marketer that still believes it’s all about the list.  And I would always opt for a tightly targeted niche that I can reach easily, with information that makes sense for them.  And having a smaller list does allow me to actually read and interact with my followers in a meaningful way for both of us.

Some other useful info you should know…

A lot of my newsletter and blog readers have joined Twitter in the last week at my urging and you’re sorting through how to use it.  Lesson one is look at the column on the right for the lines that say “@Replies” and “Direct Messages.”  I was on twitter for a month before I noticed them and had a bunch of people trying to communicate directly with me.  BTW, found a snazzy little blog post on how to best use the reply feature at: http://is.gd/lrzo

Be sure and follow @Mike_Wesely and watch his videos at http://twittalk.tv/ You’ll find this very helpful to getting up to speed fast.  Just start jotting down any questions you have, and then ask them in the chat during his show.  He offers some other resources as well.

Also follow @derekhalpern and see his “Ultimate Twitter Resource” at http://prevential.com/twitter-tips/ There’s enough good stuff there to keep you hunkered over your computer getting repetitive strain injuries for weeks.

Finally, I told you about TwitterGrader last time.  Two things I should mention:  Their scores definitely skew to the generous side.  So as Hans Solo said, “Don’t get cocky kid.”  (They also have a website grader that is VERY helpful.)

There is another service that will rate your effectiveness on Twitter called the twitalyzer.  They were being overrun and having technical issues when I wrote the first post, so I didn’t include them.  They sucked it up now and are working rad, so try them out here:

Don’t get suicidal when you see your score, they’re very tough, and you’re only as good as the day you play the ballgame.  But it will give you a good idea on the best ways to make an impact on Twitter.

Okay kids, that’s all for now.  Happy Twittering, and Peace out, Cub Scout.

-RG

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23 thoughts on “Confessions of a Twitter Snob

  1. Dana says:

    I think the real “twitter snobs” are those who expect me to follow them for any reason other than that I want to. I have no interest in following the flood of spam twitterers, pornographers, and dozens of SEO experts who follow me solely for the hope of getting a return follow. It is my time and my twitter stream. I’m impatient with anyone who thinks they have a right to that.

  2. Art Jonak says:

    Always good to see another perspective.

    The moment any resource eats up more of my time than it brings in value, I have to question & rethink that resource.

    Email used to be a time saver. For many, it’s now the exact opposite.Today many are now suffering from info-overload… is Twitter adding to the info-overload?

    You wrote:

    “Now I’m on TweetDeck and I could easily follow everyone following me, and lead those woeful souls to think I’m reading their tweets, even though I’m filtering them out. But I’d rather just be honest about it.”

    Thank you for saying it! More people need to recognize this.

    ==> But I’d rather just be honest about it.

    Love it. We must lead with character. That includes on Twitter.

    That gap between who you say you are… and who you really are, that gap creates a lot of stress.

    Are you being true to who you are on Twitter? Are you following and demanding to be followed based on your values, or for other reasons?

    Even Mr. 4-Hour Work Week, ( @tferriss ) after months of fighting it, started to follow a few people. 153 to be exact. Used to be 0 (zero) for a long time! King of the snobs? Or staying within his character?

    Great stuff Mr. Gage! Keep it coming!

    @Art Jonak 😉

  3. Vicki Kunkel says:

    What cracks me up are people who have one post (usually from a month or two ago), no avatar, no bio, no link, and they expect that you’ll follow them back. How in the world can someone expect you to follow them when they offer no information about themselves, and no valuable content?

    With my personal branding clients, I’ve always maintained that who you follow says just as much about your brand as what you post. Call it snobbery, but, as Randy pointed out, what’s the point of following folks if you can’t have meaningful interactions with them?

  4. Mark Zlochin says:

    Love the timing of this post…

    Yesterday I had some twit-exchange with Eric Worre on this matter – I think that the follow is an expression of genuine interest and should not be reduced to a mere formal courtesy act…

    Thanks for being such a snob 🙂

  5. Mark Zlochin says:

    BTW could you expand on the usage of Twitter (and social networks in general) in NM context?

  6. Randy!
    Love the “TITLE” … caught my * Eye *

    I don’t think it makes sense to follow everyONE who follows you… like you said “Quality over Quantity” …anyday!

    I believe Twitter can produce profits as long as one ‘manages twitter TIME’ effectively…. and doesn’t end up investing hours!

    How twitter will produce Dollar$ & Cents ….. well that Jury is still out.

    I believe it’s a great way to form relationships, create a following, deliver a ton of FREE Content/Training, Resources, & just flat out serve your people!

    I’ve all ready attracted two real estate clients within the last week, from a few short twitter conversations. So I believe I will turn this ‘tool’ into a profitable asset.

    My GOAL is to serve my twitter community and with doing so manifest $1,000 days with the right blogs/content/information.

    See you @ the Top Randy!
    -McL-

  7. Craig Davis says:

    Points well taken Art, Dana and Randy. Who you follow is your business and Randy’s Manifesto just pointed out the obvious time wasters that noone else was honest enough to Rant about.

    Look at Seth Godin. He’s a real thinker and how many people does Seth follow? None! Now does that make Seth a snob? No I think Seth is trying to keep the chatter down as much as possible.

    Case in point. I read a post the other day from a RT and thought that the particular person had some interesting stuff so I hit the follow button. I came back 1 hour later and it seemed like this RT was in a manic phase retweeting the posts of 23 thousand people. I had to “filter” it out as there is no way I’m going to wade through
    tweets every 23 seconds. I’ll name the disease Retweetmania.
    The inability to refrain from retweeting especially when the tweet is feces. Sorry for the nursing humor.

    Randy’s Rants Are Worthy Of The RT!

  8. Oh I forgot about that dag gone “school of thought”

    Remind me again why we ALLOW the schools of thought
    to crowd out our OWN thinking?

    Randy, again I will say “I like your style”.

    And I appreciate your helpful hand in the resources you find
    worthy of time!

    Peace

  9. davidkriss says:

    Great comments by all.

    Another thing to add here is that we are establishing relationships. Everyone has their own style and personality and as in the physical world, will approach and attract people in their own way.

    No need to take offense if someone does not follow you. To think there is a right or wrong here is to pass judgement. Do what is right for you and those who are like you will follow.

    Love your content Randy. Rock on!

  10. Andrea says:

    Major Ditto To Art’s comment.

  11. Eric Worre says:

    So the debate begins…

    The reason why I decided to follow at least the first 5,000 people who followed me are as follows:

    1. I can’t get to know someone if I don’t know what they have to say
    2. I use Tweetdeck so I have a constant stream of tweets from the larger group while I spend the real time focusing on my “interesting people” group. Occasionally I see someone new offering something interesting and drag them into that group.
    3. This doesn’t really impact my time. Following them doesn’t require anything resembling a “staff”.
    4. I’m interested in really being a part of a community, not just preaching to them.
    5. It seems like the courteous thing to do.

    Now I know there will be some mindless spammers and scammers in there and if they’re really obnoxious I’ll delete them, but they don’t really capture my attention.

    In the end, I’m learning and growing and developing new skills. I’m sure I’ll make many mistakes along the way. For now, I don’t think this is one of them. 🙂

    All the best,

    Eric Worre – http://networkmarketingpro.com

  12. aio says:

    You do are a twiter snob

  13. Randy Gage says:

    You must be a ringer. I am doing a Tele-Seminar on that topic exactly on Tuesday night. Details at:
    http://www.networkmarketingtimes.com/gagelivemlm/

    -RG

  14. Randy Gage says:

    But you didn’t think that powder blue tux you wore to the prom back in the 70’s was a mistake either!

    -RG

  15. I believe that recripocal following is more an issue of personal/time boundaries and understanding the value of the relationship.

    Also, it is technically impossible to follow thousands of friends (even on TweetDeck) as Twitter limits 3rd party APIs (INCLUDING TweetDeck) to 100 updates per hour. The chances of building a relationship with that many friends are near-non-existent at this point (and, in my opinion, impossible period).

    I do not believe it is a courtesy to purport to build a relationship with more people than are technically/physically possible.

    Social Networking provides us with a near-infinite lever; however, we must not forget that the RELATIONSHIP is the force behind that lever, and without force, a lever is useless!!

    -David

    http://twitter.com/HomeGuy

  16. I believe that recripocal following is more an issue of personal/time boundaries and understanding the value of the relationship.

    Also, it is technically impossible to follow thousands of friends (even on TweetDeck) as Twitter limits 3rd party APIs (INCLUDING TweetDeck) to 100 updates per hour. The chances of building a relationship with that many friends are near-non-existent at this point (and, in my opinion, impossible period).

    I do not believe it is a courtesy to purport to build a relationship with more people than are technically/physically possible.

    Social Networking provides us with a near-infinite lever; however, we must not forget that the RELATIONSHIP is the force behind that lever, and without force, a lever is useless!!

    -David (HomeGuy on Twitter)

  17. PS – Apologies for being so choppy above, I had tried to post earlier with a live link to my Twitter profile, but aparently Randy’s spam filter didn’t like it – heehee 😀

  18. Derek McLennan says:

    It really depends on how or what you are using Twitter for.

    If you use it just to keep touch with people you actually “know”, there’s no reason to follow everyone who follows you.
    If you are using it for business…It depends on the type of business your in and it’s model.

    Now, if you are Tony the CEO of Zappos it’s a great for developing brand culture, building relationships, customer service and marketing. Guy Kawasaki has used it to position two of his ventures as the go to place for information you can tweet about. So, it’s only natural that he will follow everyone. He wants that reciprocal effect.

    If you are an Internet Marketer you want to follow everyone and you want them to follow you (Creating a captive audience).

    For Network Marketers I think it’s up to you. Now, if you are a celebrity of some sort with a built in fan base and you sky rocket to 300k+ followers if you followed all of them. The tweet chatter may be too much to handle.

    Network Marketers should walk the fine line on Twitter between fortune 500 professional and personal use(Just my opinion). After all if you want people to partner up with they have to at least like you. You can’t do that if you are just blasting out links, quotes and how-to’s.

    Twitter has become this 160 character community of individuals all with their own opinions on how and how not to use twitter. I see both sides of the story. *Clue* I’m sure some of the none “Twitter Snobs” with the follow me follow you mentality have second accounts.

  19. I just reread the comments from an “all and” perspective versus my usual ‘either or’ paradigm. The 140 character script of Twitter actually limits you to around 120 if you are interested in having an RT now and then. I am a Randy Gage and Eric Worre ‘in training.’ The twitter party allows everyone to be themselves or anyone else if they choose and produce their own live twitter show every day. There is nowhere to hide once you begin. Anyone can check you out. Free tools tell you about yourself, anyone else and compare your twittering with anyone and average. That’s the data which has no soul. Each us with a commitment to make a difference, especially in the art of networking, makes twitter the best place right now to change the culture, to bring others into the profession and give anyone who really wants it true financial freedom. We need both Randy and Eric and the rest of us to have it happen. Randy, thank you for beginning this conversation showing how powerful it is to be yourself and giving me the room to be me and everyone else too.

  20. Simonn says:

    I found your site on Google and read a few of your other entires. Nice Stuff. I’m looking forward to reading more from you.

  21. Linnet Woods says:

    What a refreshing change to read a post that, instead of laying down the law about what one should, or should not, do on Twitter, simply states what you are, and are not, doing and accepts that it’s fine for each tweeter to do as he or she wishes.

    Thanks, it made a very good read 🙂

  22. Sheateapamb says:

    Will you say that again, please?
    —————————————
    signature: best blog hosting se5f85efef8ef8ef8e8fiiiiiiuefiekkk

 

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