Twitter


This post is part of the series Getting Twitter Followers: What Works and What Doesn’t, reviewing some of the methods you can use to get Twitter followers.

You can find other posts in the series here.

If you’ve used any system to increase your Twitter followers and want to share your experience, please send me an e-mail or leave a comment below.

featured users

On the road to $1M rating:

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Let me start this review with a disclaimer: I’m just evaluating Featured Users as a tool to attract Twitter followers. Their website says that advertising with them is “a great way to get more Twitter followers and support your favorite Twitter apps”. So if your main objective is to support the applications that display Featured Users banners, then you may be happy with the results. On the other hand, if you just want to get new people to follow you, then Featured Users is a downright waste of money.

Advertising in Featured Users works in the following way: you pay a fixed amount to have a small banner with your Twitter profile displayed across a network of Twitter applications and websites [You can see the list of participating websites here]. People who find your description interesting click on the banner and are directed to your Twitter page, where they can choose to start following you.

When I first heard about the Featured Users concept I thought it sounded like a good idea, and decided to give it a try. And though I’m not usually much of a compulsive buyer, that day I went for the most expensive package: I bought 11,500 impressions of my profile for $100.

Once all the impressions had been used, I logged on to Featured Users to evaluate the results. I anticipated they’d be disappointing, as my total number of followers had barely moved from the initial 400. They turned out to be even worse than I expected.

The 11,500 impressions had translated into 48 people clicking to see my Twitter page -implying a dismal click-through rate (CTR) of 0.475%. It’s not possible to know how many of those actually became followers, but even in the best-case scenario I’d have paid $100 for 48 of them, which works out at a whooping $2 per follower.

Was the low CTR due to my profile being unappealing to those who saw the banner? Yes and No. Certainly my CTR was well below average. However, according to Featured Users’ numbers, even the average user would have seen less than 100 people click on her ad. In the best-case scenario -where all those who click become followers- she’d have paid $1 for each. This seems outrageously expensive to me.

You could argue that those who click on a banner displaying a profile are more likely to be targeted followers -interested in what you have to say. But bear in mind that it’s possible to get 100 targeted followers in less than 15 minutes for free: just search Twitter for a couple of keywords related to the topics you care about. You’ll get a list of tweets containing those keywords. Browse through them and follow the first 200 users whose tweets provide genuine information -it’s very easy to spot and avoid the ones just trying to sell you something. That’s it: next time you log in you’ll find that more than 50% of them will have followed you back.

Is saving the hassle of manually following 200 people worth $100? Judge for yourself. For me, the answer is a resounding no.

Getting Twitter Followers: What Works and What Doesn’t

This post is the first of a series reviewing the multitude of products and services that promise to get you thousands of Twitter followers.

If you’ve used any of these services and want to share your experience please send me an e-mail or leave a comment HERE

Next post in the series:

I must admit I first joined Twitter looking to publicize my posts. As a beginner in the blogging world, I was struggling to generate traffic. Experts will tell you that as time passes your audience will slowly build up, but I was impatient, and Twitter seemed the perfect vehicle to attract readers: I just had to broadcast the title of my post and those who found the topic interesting would click on the link.

I first joined Twitter looking to

After a couple of months on Twitter, I had become a devotee of the site for very different reasons. I had found several personal-finance bloggers whose posts I now read assiduously -such as @MoneyEnergy or @fiscalgeek. I was also talking regularly with people whose interests had nothing to do with my blog: new moms, college students, photographers. And I was enjoying every minute of it.

Having met just one of these people would have made my Twitter adventure worthwhile. But while I still wanted to drive traffic to my blog, I had less than 400 followers -hardly enough to get more than a couple of visits whenever I announced a new blog post.

I decided at that point to do something about it, and started researching the best way to add followers to my account. In the process I discovered several things:

  • Most of the programs promising to bring in hundreds of followers are completely ineffective or downright scams -they just want to get your email address and have no intention of actually getting anybody to follow you.

  • There’s a big difference between bringing in untargeted followers -which are relatively easy to get, but may not be at all interested in what you have to say- and targeted ones.

  • As appealing as having thousands of followers seemed to me in the beginning, sometimes I doubt it’s really worth it. At some point it becomes difficult to keep conversations -you feel overwhelmed, in the middle of a crowd where everybody tries to talk on top of each other.

This post is an introduction to a series where I want to review the services I’ve used to increase the number of followers in my account. If you’ve ever used any of them -whether you still have those followers or have resorted to unfollowing 90% of them, as I’ve seen some people do when trying to keep up becomes too hard-, your contribution would be very useful to other readers looking to increase their Twitter following. Please consider writing a comment to this post or e-mailing me directly to share your experience.

And remember to come back tomorrow to read the first review.

TALKBACK

  • Have you tried to get more people to follow you on Twitter?

  • Do you think trying to get thousands of followers is silly, and would rather stick to the few select ones you currently have?

PLEASE SHARE YOUR OPINION HERE

The 10 Worst Quotes Circulating Twitter

Jump directly to WORST quotes

Quotes are the latest fad on Twitter. Few of us can resist the urge to add a witty sentence every couple of tweets. It seems that, whatever it is we feel the need to say in less than 140 characters, somebody has already said it before -so why not quote them?

It sounds like a good idea, and in principle it should be -quotes can be deeply inspiring and uplifting. The problem is that the number of quotes being tweeted or re-tweeted has become so large, that we’re in serious danger of becoming numb to their message. We’re on the verge of a quote-overdose.

It’s time we developed some simple rules of quotetiquette, and I’m going get the ball running proposing the first three DON’Ts:

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DON’T write quotes in your automatic tweets. You may have found the sentence exhilarating when you first read it but, trust me, the effect fades after the first couple of repetitions. Let’s just say that when I read for the sixth time in 90 minutes that “only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity”, I was able to clearly picture what Einstein had in mind when he wrote the sentence: he foresaw a day in the future when people would use Twitter to set up automatic feeds repeating sentences out of context. Like automatic parrots -isn’t that genius?

DON’T overdo it with the pushy quotes. You know which ones I mean, the reach-for-success-failure-doesn’t-exist-and-if-you-fail-you-haven’t-been-thinking-positively-so-you-deserve-it type of quote. They’re supposed to be inspiring, but can become a bit scary sometimes. This morning I made the mistake of opening Twitter before I’d taken my coffee. The first thing I read said: “make today your masterpiece”. Ok, so no pressure there. I had to fight hard not to go back to bed and cover my head with the sheets.

DON’T write quotes that lose their meaning taken out of context -remember, your readers won’t know where you took it from, and may understand something very different from what you intended to say.


The following is my list of the 10 worst offenders:

  1. “You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win”

    Again, no pressure there…

  2. “The winds of grace are always blowing, but you have to raise the sail”

    Meaning: if you’re not rich and successful, it’s your fault.

  3. “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently”

    Not only it’s your fault, it’s a sign that you’re stupid.

  4. “Success if the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm”

    In my experience, though, when you’re explaining to your boss that despite your apologies the last five times you’ve again spilled coffee over the photocopy machine, keeping the enthusiasm may become a little tricky.

  5. “It’s choice – not chance – that determines your destiny”

    Wouldn’t it be ironic to find out that this person was involved -God forbid- in a plane crash?

  6. “Leadership, like coaching, is fighting for the hearts and souls of men and getting them to believe in you.”

    The jury is still out as to whether these are the words of a personal-growth guru or of Bernard Madoff.

  7. “The problem with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money”

    That’s why capitalism invented bank bailouts!

  8. “Do one thing every day that scares you”

    And why not start by jumping off a bridge?

  9. “Human behavior may not be totally predictable, but it’s usually reasonably easy to predict”

    We don’t know for sure who wrote this sentence, but you can clearly detect the words of an economist. Before the banks stopped lending.

  10. “The only true gift is a portion of yourself”

    Gore!

TALKBACK

  • Do you think there should be more or less quotes on Twitter?

  • Have you found other quotes that sound strange out of context?

PLEASE CONTRIBUTE TO THE LIST HERE