So what is the best way to get lots of Twitter followers? A number of software solutions have been introduced that promise to automatically build up your follower list into the thousands (or the tens of thousands). The basic way this works is that the program follows lots of other people, many of whom will automatically follow you back.
This is the core Twitter strategy, and it works. The problem with relying solely on automation is that you’re going to end up with a large number of followers who have no connection to your industry and no other reason to be on your list. If you just use twitter for fun, that is fine. But if it is your intention to use Twitter for networking and lead generation, then you need to focus on people who may be in position to help you.
The problem is that you’re going to have to filter through the many thousands of pieces of information (the tweets of those you follow) to get to the information you need.
So…if using automation is not the best way to build up a follower list, then what is? In my opinion, the best approach is a blended strategy that combines automation with a manual oversight process. For example, the Friend Follower function in TweetLater, a popular twitter management tool, brings back a daily list of potential followers based on a list of keywords. However, you manually inspect the list and then approve the particular users you want to follow. This gives you more control over your list and insurers that you are following good and relevant Twitter users.
You do have the option of letting the software automatically follow those who you do not approve or disapprove within three days. I’ll admit that I am taking the more aggressive approach by letting the software automatically approve users if I do not deal with them. However, I try to make sure that I look into the queue often enough that very few users get added without my approval.
This strategy does assume that you’re trying to sell products or services to a specific market. If this is not the case for you, then by all means feel free to add as many users as you want. It may take some experimentation to find the perfect strategy for your situation, but Twitter is a fun tool to experiment with. So have fun with it.