Recently, especially this week, I have noticed large numbers of people following and then unfollowing me on Twitter.
Some days I have seen my follower count increase by as many as 250 people, only for them all to disappear again the very next day.
Nothing new there you may think – after all, there are a lot of spammers on Twitter these days.
However, the bizarre thing is that a large number of guys will then follow me back again the next day too.
The answer may lie in the follower limits that have been put into place by Twitter – users are not allowed to follow more than 2,000 people until they themselves are being followed by 2000 people.
Beyond that, you may only follow 110% of the number of people following you.
Those limits are in place in order to limit spam accounts belonging to people who will blindly follow everyone in the hope that some follow back.
Therefore, for the new Twitter user who is looking only to inflate their follower count without actually building any kind of relationship with anyone, the ploy of following people and then unfollowing those who don’t follow back is the sure-fire way to quickly achieve that magical number of 2,000 followers.
Established Users Follow/Unfollow too
Such behaviour, however, is not just limited to new users of the Twitter service.
Some established Tweeters also seem to have joined the follow/unfollow movement too.
What they do is they search out other users who follow many people and have a large following themselves.
By continually following these people, unfollowing and then following again, they appear at the top of these people’s friends lists, making it far more likely that others will then check them out and follow them.
As I now have close to 1,700 followers I guess I have become a ripe target (I wonder if all these bouncing followers were to blame for my recent mini suspension?) but these people will never likely get followed back by me – I’m on Twitter to socialise and have fun and so I’m rather choosy as to whom I follow back.
Also, I get so many notifications of new followers these days that I will often delete them all without even looking at them – if someone wants me to follow them they have to put in a little effort and at least reply to me first in order to get my attention.
Have you experienced all this follow/unfollow shenanigans on Twitter?
Do you blindly follow everyone who follows you or are you a little more choosy?