Twitter Influence and Followers

At the start of the semester, I had 261 followers on Twitter and by the last week of classes this semester, I made it up to 281. When I looked back to see where I started, I knew I had gained a few, but I didn’t realize that it was that many. Number of followers has not typically been a statistic that I always monitor, but watching it throughout the semester to see which tweets gained a lot of interest and engagement and eventually turned into followers was really cool.

There was one significant moment during the semester when I remember gaining 5 followers in one day. This came after I had tweeted for an assignment and used the words “social media,” as well as tagged an influential person in the social media field, @MariSmith.

I didn’t get any retweets on this specific tweet, so it is clear that people were either following her handle and mentions or certain key words in the tweet. I think that these are common words (social media, online content) that people within the field probably search for a lot to look at Twitter interactions and sentiment around certain topics. Most of the people who followed me after this tweet were social media professionals and even an online marketing company and they still follow me to this day.

Aside from that, I gained my other followers when I tweeted mostly about Syracuse sports. I usually tweet after football and basketball games, sometimes a picture or video from the game or just an enthusiastic tweet about the score, and I try to use whatever hashtag is trending for that specific game. Syracuse Athletics does a really good job of encouraging people to use game-specific hashtags and they’ll often include people’s tweets up on the video boards during games. Other media outlets like and the NewsHouse often put together social media “stories” that show examples of the best tweets and online posts from the games. When I tweet with these hashtags, I usually get a solid number of engagements not only from my followers, but also random Syracuse sports fans who are following along on the hashtag search.

For me, the best way to gain followers is to use trending hashtags that are appealing to a lot of people, like the Syracuse hashtags that are looked at by thousands of accounts, whether it is fans, students, school organizations, or alumni. In terms of a goal, I will probably continue along with practice and see if I can reach 300 followers by the end of next semester.

Tweets without hashtags or specific key words never really gained a lot of attention, which doesn’t surprise me. But I don’t always tweet for engagement; sometimes you just want to tweet a random thought or quote you heard and share that on your timeline. Tweets have different purposes and meanings and if I want to continue to gain followers, there are specific types of tweets (like tweets with trending hashtags) like I will do more of.

Aside from just looking at my followers, I also took a look at my Klout score, which  is 58. When I created Klout, I had a score of 38, but that was before I realized that the more accounts you add, the higher your score gets. After I added all of my accounts (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube), my Klout score reached up to 58. My Instagram accounts for 47% of my Klout score contribution, which makes sense because I get a lot more engagement on Instagram than any other platform than I use. My Facebook came in second with 40%. When I looked at what impacts my score the most, it showed the highest amount of impact when I added photos to Facebook and posted on Instagram.

Overall, I think I really changed my online social media presence for the better by learning useful ways to engage online and create lasting relationships in a virtual world.

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