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WTF Ashton Kutcher Twitter billboard ?
Image by LDubTown via Flickr

Twitter is getting more and more attention from traditional media lately. Whether it’s a news-story mentioning Twitter, a Twitter competition between a celebrities, or using Twitter to gather reports on the Iran elections, the average person sees the word “Twitter” more and more often.

But with the Twitter rush a new bubble seems to be forming.

Remember the days of the 2000 Dot-Com bubble, in which every site displaying a million page-views could raise money as though it had already become profitable?
I feel we are repeating the same mistake, only in social media.

The new fashion among some Twitter users, individuals or companies, is to brag about the number of “followers” they have for their Twitter account, or the number of followers their employees have. There is also a new buzz-word: “Reach“. Those self-proclaimed Twitter experts will use tools like TwitterAnalyzer to show others that their Tweets are supposedly read by even more people than their Twitter followers, using a repeat publication (“Retweets”).

And there lies the illusion.

The number of Twitter followers (or reach) is usually meaningless

Twitter usage is based on the magic principle of following/followers. You follow other users that may interest you, and being followed in turn by others who find your updates interesting.
But suppose you just opened an account on Twitter – how do you get followers?

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