Twitter influence ratio (2009)

I received a Tweet the other day and it was from someone I did not know in a field I was not interested in.

The post said something to the affect of ‘I have followed you, now follow me and then unfollow in order to complete the opt-out process’.

When I started my Twitter account, I went to some of the communication and PR twitter accounts that were of interest to me and then followed some of their followers. The thought was that since I was interested in PR and communications, there would probably be some interesting posts from other people interested in the same topics that I am.

I had been thinking about Twitter accounts before, but after receiving this message it only reinforced my original thought: Twitter is just about getting the most number of followers, no matter how you do it.

Right now it seems like a competition. If you have a lot of followers, you are seen as a person of ‘influence’ in your respective field.

I would say Twitter is used primarily by communication professionals either as a platform for themselves, or as a member of an organizational team, and it ultimately becomes a competition of who has the most amount of followers.

I followed about 800 accounts initially and at the moment I have about 400 followers, and there is no way I am able to keep up with all the traffic.

Whenever I get onto Tweetdeck, it is just a matter of luck whether or not someone else is on at the same time and sends something I see that interests.

Even with the competition for followers, it is still fun and I enjoy connecting with random people whom I share a common interest with.

As far as my influence, it looks like my current ‘influence’ ratio is 877/418 (following to followers). So going by the current established metric, I am just about 50% “influential.”

Mike Nicholson

I've spent my career working in a variety of Strategic Communications, Public Relations, Public Affairs, Information Operations, and Executive Outreach positions. With a history of planning, preparing, executing, and assessing communication strategies in the U.S. and abroad, I use this site to write, think and share lessons learned on organizational communications.

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