Mike Butcher – The UK & Ireland Editor for Techcrunch, sent me a couple of tweets today and also an email. By the time Mike emailed me, he thought I had to be using a robot or something, to have developed such a great twitter network so quickly! We spoke and by the end of our phone call, everything was fine – but the story is excellent and well worth sharing with you!
Here’s Mike’s initial tweet to me (he’s actually a really nice man when you speak with him – honest!)
You have 22k followers, a big UK Tweeter. Your tweets are rather dull. Your blogs slow/derivative. What gives?
Although Mike had read my blog and was following me on twitter, he was amazed that other people were doing the same.
I gave Mike a very friendly reply:
I’m guessing you are asking the wrong person – Thanks for the compliment though ; )
Shortly after, Mike sent a far more friendly tweet to me:
No probs, just trying to keep you on your toes. I’m pretty dull too, but then I don’t have 22k expecting Socratic insight.
A problem with Twitter & a Journalists instinct!
Twitter is experiencing a problem as I write this; where certain people (me included) with large follower / following numbers are unable to follow people back. My follower count has froze and anyone I follow is getting notification, but twitter isn’t allowing me to follow them.
I told Mike I would follow him, so he could send me a DM (direct message) and I did – but the Twitter problem meant he never got followed!
This, apparently, is why Mike assumed I was using a robot, to follow people and then immediately unfollow them. It’s odd really, as I’m actually following over TWENTY THOUSAND PEOPLE back. So, he emailed me to say he thought I might be tricking Twitter.
In fairness to Mike, he’s not using twitter the way I do. He currently has over 6,000 followers (because he’s a famous editor), but only follows less than 1,000 of them back. That’s fine, but the complete opposite of the kind of ‘community building’ I focus my Twitter efforts on.
Twitter mystery solved!
I called Mike this afternoon, to let him know about the Twitter follow problem. He’s actually a very nice person to speak with. I also sent him a few links, to show how this blog and my twitter account act as two ‘outposts’ for the same, large network.
Twitter and community building
Mike’s right, it is unusual to have 22,000 followers on Twitter (and so quickly), but then it’s ALSO unusual for this blog, which was only launched in the middle of October, to already have posts with hundreds of comments.
Building your twitter network
One post here has 550 comments, all from Twitter users and all containing their twitter user names, so you can follow them! It’s called Building your twitter network and you can add your twitter details and find great new people to follow too!
It’s not as high tech as using a robot, but a network is all about people – right?