A few weeks ago I read an article that discussed the issue of popularity and influence of certain Twitter users and of interest to me was the fact that the most popular were not necessarily the most influential. This got me looking at who follows whom, the relationship between the followed and the following, how influence could be measured and how this fitted with my own experience and what all that means for the average Twitter user.
Now don’t get me wrong, Twitter is a useful tool and while pushing my own barrow (1) I have seen a direct relationship between my social media activity and interest in what it is that is being pushed, so I for one will continue to use Twitter to push that barrow as needed.
It seems to me that people with lots of followers and who may therefore be perceived as influential seem to fit into one of the following –
You show me yours and I’ll show you mine – these tweeters have 1000’s of followers but also follow just as many. How do these people manage their twitter feed and how much of it do they actually read?
It’s not me it’s you – these people pop up and start following you, but then stop following, if you don’t reciprocate (2). I assume you were interested in what I had to say; otherwise you wouldn’t have followed me in the first place – right?
The givers not takers are tweeters with 100’s of thousands of followers, all apparently hanging on the next great (or mindless) tweet. Interestingly, in return they follow no one or at best maybe a few dozen tweeters so remember “I have no interest in you but do keep following me”. These tweeters usually have had some sort of celebrity status before coming to Twitter.
The @annieleibovitz’s is a group named in honor of the brilliant but fiscally challenged photographer who has 17000+ followers at the time of writing (and growing daily) but has not yet made a single tweet. Presumably she cant afford the staff at the moment? On what basis are all these people following this user? I wonder if this will be the current generations JFK or Lennon assassination or Man on the Moon moment? – “I remember exactly where I was the day Annie made her first tweet”. Lets hope that first tweet is a little more profound than what she’s having for breakfast that day.
During my research I discovered http://www.tweetvalue.com/ that will tell you (using some complex algorithm!!) what your Twitter value is, whatever that means. For the record my value was $46 (3), which suggest I’m neither popular nor influential (4) but then maybe, if I get some more followers….
You can find me on Twitter so follow along @ABrownPhoto
1. I recently published the iPhone app Melbourne Photo Travel Guide – A Photographers Guide to Melbourne that fits in your pocket and available from the iTunes store
2. Sorry Christian Right businessman, but I’m not sure why you would follow me in the first place?
3. Annie’s TweetValue is $1713
4. Reminds me of being at school
Story first appearred on my blog here
How do Tweeters attract followers and why do people follow certain tweeters?
What does it mean to be an influential Twitter user, how is this measured?
Does anybody actually read all this information and what does this all mean to the average twitter user?