And Why You Really Don’t Want to Do It.
With the social media service Twitter beginning to be more widely adopted, less sophisticated marketers are joining the community. Some of these folks are opportunists of dubious ethics who are not looking to use the medium engage the community.
Instead these social media hucksters are simply looking to take advantage of Twitter’s simple format and established user base to push their weak marketing message out to a larger audience.
It was only a matter of time, I suppose, before the slimier and more obnoxious fringe of the internet marketing world saw Twitter as yet another target for their short sighted slash and burn, spammy approach to marketing.
Some of the worst offenders are actually selling “secret” techniques on how to quickly build a massive Twitter follower list. I’ll save you the money & tell you exactly how to do it. For free.
Why Share How to Game Twitter?
This whole gaming Twitter thing has become a hot button topic amongst long-time Twitter users. When new Twitter accounts are opened and get as many followers in a few weeks those of us who have been on Twitter for a couple years have, we tend to notice. Obviously we think about how and why they are doing it. The how is pretty simple. There could be several reasons why.
Jim Turner of One By One Media (Love the new OBOM Logo!) has been leading the charge on exposing the process of gaming Twitter. Last week he hosted one of the best shows I’ve ever listened to on BlogTalkRadio called, The Gaming of Twitter Exposed, where he laid out exactly what I’m sharing here. We’re encouraging folks to Hold Fast against the gaming.
I’ll tell you strait up that I don’t see anything illegal or particularly immoral about gaming Twitter to inflate your follower numbers. I just don’t think it’s smart.
You might ask, “Chris , if you think it’s such a bad idea, why would you guys share how to do it?” Well there are a couple reasons.
First and foremost I see a big credibility issue. The hucksters who are promoting this technique are really not adding any value to the Twitter community as a whole nor to the people who blindly follow their lead. Sure that they are amassing gobs of followers. And to the unsophisticated Twitter user, it is impressive.
While numbers can certainly be a significant factor, those who don’t know any better measure success and influence only by the numbers. Regardless of whether the new Twitter user is a solo entrepreneur or a large corporation it can be easy to assume that the number of Twitter followers equals credibility and influence.
The mistake in this line of reasoning comes from ignoring the quality of the followers. Some followers are more interested in hearing your message and engaging you in mutually beneficial business relationships than others. Having gobs of uninterested “followers” who aren’t listening to your message is worse than pointless, because it gives a false sense of accomplishment and progress.
There is nothing wrong with big numbers of followers. In fact I’m all for it. As long as they are the right followers. Having large numbers of enthusiastic followers is obviously a good thing. The trouble is, inflating your followers by gaming Twitter only succeeds in adding legions of disinterested non-listeners. Beyond bragging rights, there is no real value in it.
The mistaken assumption that numbers equals influence creates two issues from my perspective. 1). I have to repeatedly explain to prospective clients why the number of followers does not really indicate the influence of the account. And 2). Prospective clients may assume that I am less knoledgable because I have just over 3,000 followers after being on Twitter for over 2 years and Mr. Huckster got 16,000 followers in just two weeks.
Of course choosing not to do something is very different from not knowing how it’s done. So to save time explaining, I’m writing up a blog post that I can simply point to.
People Getting Ripped Off
The second issue involves people getting ripped off. People are charging anywhere from $6 to $200 for this same basic information.
Now I don’t begrudge people packaging information that is available for free, selling it in a more accessible format and making a profit. Consulting is very much like that at times.
What bothers me is that a lot of what is being offered only adds numbers without really extending the reach or influence of unsophisticated folks doing the buying. And in some cases, the “secret” techniques can even result in the Twitter account being suspended.
How does getting a reputation as a spammer or getting your account suspended help expand your brand or your business?
Do you really want to pay someone for a pass into the slimy end of the pool?
I’m here to help people. That means I work to assist them in expanding their influence on line so their business will earn more money.
People who are looking to make a quick buck from unsuspecting and unsophisticated customers and then disappear can give our profession a bad reputation so it’s in our best interest to expose the huckstery.
I know. I know. You want to know how they do it.
How to Game Twitter
First of all a disclaimer. This method has been tested on a dummy account and it works, to the tune of adding 6,000+ followers in the first week the account was created. However, if this approach is executed poorly it can result in your Twitter account being suspended. Your mileage may vary.
And again, I do not recommend doing this. While big Twitter follower numbers are good for your ego, having the right followers is much more valuable to your business no matter what size the list. I do not do this on my own Twitter account.
With that disclaimer out of the way, here’s how to game twitter and add thousands of followers every day:
- Get a Twitter account. Kind of obvious. But if you don’t have an account with Twitter, you can’t game their system.
- Next, sign up for a service like Twollo (Twollow is another possibility. Not sure who copied whom with the idea here.)
- Within their system set up “auto-follow” searches on basic keyword phrases like “social media”, “hey”, “twitter”, “marketing”, “dude”, “make money”, etc . Right now the best phrase to autofollow is “followfriday”.
- Be sure to set the “maximum number of follows” to 500. This is important precaution to help prevent your account from being suspended.
- Set up accounts at places like SocialOomph (or TwitterKarma or FriendOrFollow or Tweeple Twak or SocialToo – If you’re really ambitious use all of ’em!)
- At least once a day go through and “unfollow” anyone who didn’t autofollow you or who hasn’t followed you back within a day or 2.
- Many of these services will email you lists of those who have unfollowed you recently. Drop these followers as well to keep your follower/following numbers within “acceptable” twitter ratios
Bonus steps – accelerate gaming results!
- Be sure you have autofollow on for your own Twitter account (setting found in services from step 5 above)
- Email lists of fellow gamers (with your Twitter account at the top of the list) so you’re sure to follow each other and show up on these lists.
Average growth rate using this method appears to be approximately 500-600 per day initially after startup day. As your followers grow it can quickly pass 1,000+ new followers per day if you manage it well.
If you are too lazy busy to actually send tweets on Twitter, then be sure to also set auto-tweets so that you show up in public time lines.
Maintain the number you are following within no more than about 500-1500 more than you have followers to minimize the chances of getting your Twitter account suspended. You can also set up an “@/reply summaries” email notification so that you can “interact” with anyone who @s you.
And there you have it. How to Game Twitter and Add Thousands of Followers Every Day. For free.
What are your thoughts? Is gaming Twitter a bad idea?