How to Get Me to Follow You

I get some flack every now and then because I am not an automatic follower on Twitter and I don’t accept quite a few of my friend requests on Facebook or Foursquare.  Yup, I am pretty much the anti-social social media person.  For Foursquare, it’s a matter of safety.  If I don’t know you, do I really want you to know where I am?  For Facebook, I feel like you are asking something of me and do I want to give something to someone I don’t know?  Not really.  Most people can understand this, but it’s Twitter that gets people.

So what are my reasons against being an automatic follower?  I view my Twitter as being an extension of me.  The first intro to me is my Twitter name, which I have admittedly made boring.  Then you next move to my bio.  There you will find out that I am into several things, including #tourismchat, the Yankees and my cat.  And then you look at my feed where you find out that I’m a little nuts.  Finally, you might hit up who I am following… Yes, I do this, so it is very likely that others do too.  Don’t you think that it would make the most sense to make this just as much an extension of myself as every other part of the page is?  Shouldn’t who I am following only be filled with people that I am actually interested in?  (To be perfectly honest, I do have to do some housecleaning and am hoping to accomplish that soon.)

That brings us (in a very long winded way) to our topic today: How to get me to follow you.  I am not writing this in an egotistical way.  I understand next to none of you care if I follow you.  I am writing this so that you understand that work you should put in to actually get followers.  So here we go:

1.  Attend social media events

If you are local and you say something interesting to me in real life, I am going to want to get to know more about you.  This is kind of a no duh thing.  Of course, I don’t tend to talk people unless forced, so I do not find people to follow this way as much as I like.

2. Talk to me

This is another no duh directive, but don’t just try to talk to me once.  I probably won’t follow you back the first time.  Any time that you see that you can add something to my conversation, do it.  Make sure you are staying on topic and well…

3. Don’t be creepy

Although I could on and on about what creeps me out about some people on Twitter, we probably don’t want to go into personality trait problems.  There are many ways you can inadvertently look creepy on Twitter.  The biggest is not having a picture.  This doesn’t mean just any picture.  I am talking a picture of you.  The best is to have a closeup of you with a warm and friendly smile on your face.  Next, you absolutely must have a bio.  It doesn’t have to list every single accomplishment you’ve ever achieved.  Just give us a few things that will give us an idea of what you tweet about.  Finally, list your location.  In my case, I don’t really care where you are.  I look at that as a clue to how you found me.  So maybe it is personal preference, but it does creep me out when someone doesn’t have a location.

4. Don’t just push

When I’m trying to decide whether to follow someone, I skim their tweets to see if they have talked to anyone.  If there is absolutely no sign of that, there is absolutely no chance of me following that person.  This is social media.  Talk to others.  Promote the good work others are doing.  Be a person.

5.  Be interesting

This is kind of hard to define.  Basically, take some time to read through your tweets every so often.  Are they interesting to you?  No?  Then no one else cares about them either.  There is no magic wand beyond this, since the formula for interesting is so different for all of us.

In my case, you could do everything right and I may still not follow you.  Like I just said, the formula for interesting varies and you just may not be all that interesting to me.  That does not mean I will not tweet back at you when you talk to me or that I will not like you if I ever meet you in real life.  It just means that overall, we are not Twitter matches.

I would also note that I don’t do all of these things myself.  But as I continually tell people, I’m also not that interested in getting Twitter followers.

So what are your thoughts?  Am I Twitter snob?  Did I miss anything that would make you follow someone?

2 Responses to “How to Get Me to Follow You”

  1. pbandchutney Says:

    I think there is a lot that people can take away from this… I don’t accept friend requests on facebook right away either.. especially from a dude who’s showing off his muscles as his profile pic and is connected to only TWO of my friends who both happen to be out of state.. weird no? I’m new to the social media thing – the blogging, the tweeting, etc… and I realize that I will only get more followers if I interact more and tweet “interesting” things more. So well done my friend, great post.

  2. decillis Says:

    Thank you for your kind words!

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