In search of Oasis: Social Networking Popularity

I am so late to Twitter (Twitter Id: @UpbeatNow) that it’s not even funny. I am getting educated day by day on what are the best practices on Twitter. Being in the student mode puts me in a state of “wonder” which makes it easy to learn.

In that regard, I looked at the “State of the Twittersphere” report from HubSpot. One thing that caught my attention was a graph that showed the spread of Twitter users by the number of followers. Here is the chart for your quick reference:
twitter-followersQuick thing to note – only 1.4% of the Twitter users have more than 500 followers.  Saying it differently, 98.6% of Twitter users have less than 500 followers. If you observe closely, only 25% of Twitter users have more than 50 followers.

So in other words, most of Twitter is dominated by a small subset of Twitter users.

Taking a deeper look, I also searched for people who have a VERY large number of followers and found that a large majority of them are involved in some sort of social media work. So having a large number of followers is in a way a statement of fact that they know how to make this work in social media (Twitter being a subset of Social Media)

During my conversations with new Twitter users, I see that there is a sense of urgency to be on the “Twitter Elite” by getting as many followers as possible. So, that will lead to strategies such as:

* Follow everyone who follows you

* Follow a  lot of people who might in turn follow you

* Re-tweet messages from Twitter Elite so that they notice you and possibly mention you in their tweets

* Ask a question to a Twitter Elite. In their response you are mentioned and hence their followers might notice you.

* Use Twitter like you would use a social bookmarking tool. Go and carpet bomb Twitter with links

I can list a lot of things but the fundamental question is – “Why would you want to be in the Twitter Elite?”

The above question is more valid if your offer to the marketplace is NOT directly in the social media world. Let me explain further:

Things take time and gaining a set of followers on Twitter using “strategies and tactics” will take longer. If you notice, you will see that celebrities and others who have powerful personal brands (with demonstrable set of accomplishments in a particular domain) find it easy to have a lot of followers. Since you have only 24 hours in a day, you now have to make a choice whether to spend that time on

a) Using strategies and tactics to grow your Twitter followers


b) Use the time to demonstrate accomplishments in your domain so that more followers are attracted to you


c) Focus on b) and get help on a) from experts

Social Media popularity contest can be an oasis. For you to reach your business and personal ambition, it may not be required to be popular on the social media. All you need to do is to leverage your expertise to contribute better to the audience that you can build on social media and vice versa.

Have a great week ahead!