Why You Should Embrace Twitter Lurkers
Please do not unfollow Twitter followers who are inactive, no matter how long it’s been. There are many lurkers, searchers and readers who may never tweet, but still have a great deal of value.
What is that value? Well, there are active users on Twitter who dominate the conversation the way some dominate a cocktail party. Then there are those that don’t. Although, they tend to stand out in other ways, particularly in numbers. For example, of the more than 100 million active users on Twitter, half log in daily, but only 60% have tweeted in the last month. What this should tell you is that so-called lurkers account for a large percentage of the average Twitter audience.
So you may feel inclined to unfollow anyone who isn’t participating in the conversation, but that can be shortsighted for several reasons. Your social brand is made up of a spectrum of followers, updates, messages and re-tweets over time. It is possible that those who listen in may offer something to that conversation down the line. Why would you rob them — and yourself — of that possible connection?
Also remember that Twitter is becoming one of the most used and valued search engines for real-time information. A lot of people use Twitter Search for research on any number of topics. People who find your profile this way may not be active, but that doesn’t mean they’re not interested in what’s happening in a given space.
But the biggest reason to value your listeners on Twitter, is not because they add to your reach, but because they’re people. Don’t lose sight of the whole reason for being social — to get in front of more people and make connections. You never know when one of your messages may strike a chord and cause a wallflower follower to reach out to you, take an action, or repeat what you have posted to others.
And do not forget that social platforms are hardly the only way that people spread the word. Just because followers do not share your content via Twitter does not mean they are not sharing it in conversation, via email, and via other social channels.
Keep that in mind before you “clean up” your Twitter account. You will most certainly be sweeping diamonds out with the dust!