5 Signs You Suck at Twitter

I’ve been playing around with Friend Or Follow over the last few days, and I’ve come to the conclusion that a lot of people suck at Twitter.

Friend Or Follow is a Twitter tool that shows people you’re following, but aren’t following you; people who follow you, but you’re not following; and people you have a mutual followship with.

I dumped over 500 people from my Twitter account this week with FOF. I checked out each account I unfollowed, and frankly, some of you people are just doing it wrong. That’s why I unfollowed you. Not sure if this includes you? Then check out the…

Five signs you suck at Twitter.

    • You claim to be a social media consultant/pro/expert/guru (CPEG), but your following to follower ratio is 10:1. That is, you’re followed by 5,000 or more people, but only following 500. Social media consultants looove to say “have conversations with people.” But shouldn’t people who truly value conversation be willing to, I don’t know, have them?. Or at least fake like you are? If you’re a CPEG, you should have a ratio fairly close to 1:1. This is not to say that everyone should have a 1:1 ratio. Just the CPEGs. (Pro tip: you’ll also have more than 200 followers. I’m just sayin’.)
    • Nearly every one of your tweets is some motivational or inspirational message. Why do I need to get ten motivational messages peppered throughout the day? If it didn’t help me at 8:30 — 29 minutes after your HootSuite-scheduled “Good morning, my tweeps! Make this an excellent day!” — then it’s not going to help me at 9:30, 10:30, and so on. Don’t regurgitate someone else’s cleverness, show me yours. If you really want to motivate me, tell me about the cool stuff you’re doing.
    • You’re trying to amass as many followers as you can. If you’re a celebrity, a public figure, or someone who’s really, really interesting, that’s great. If you grew your network through hard work and earned those followers, more power to you. But if you resort to computer scripts, trickery, and joining follower-building networks to boost your rankings, then stick with being a LinkedIn LION. Twitter is not a competitive sport. Despite what you’re already doing to LinkedIn and Facebook, Twitter isn’t just one more race to the bottom of mediocrity and uselessness.
    • Your Twitter bio has the words “money,” “fast,” and “make” in it. I spam-block every single person whose bio says they have some money making system they want to share with me. Stick to peddling penis drugs and fake watches by email.
    • Your time between tweets can be measured with a calendar. You don’t have to tweet many times a day, but at least once a day wouldn’t kill you. Even every other day would be fine. But when you’re only tweeting every 3 – 4 weeks on a regular basis, then Twitter isn’t a communication tool, it’s an afterthought, like calling your mom the day after Mother’s Day.

What is your Twitter pet peeve? What sort of annoying behavior have you seen?

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    About Erik Deckers

    Erik Deckers is the President of Pro Blog Service, a content marketing and social media marketing agency He co-authored four social media books, including No Bullshit Social Media with Jason Falls (2011, Que Biz-Tech), and Branding Yourself with Kyle Lacy (3rd ed., 2017, Que Biz-Tech), and The Owned Media Doctrine (2013, Archway Publishing). Erik has written a weekly newspaper humor column for 10 papers around Indiana since 1995. He was also the Spring 2016 writer-in-residence at the Jack Kerouac House in Orlando, FL.


    1. @Blake, I know. I fully accept that I suck at email.

    2. A person needs to be willing to meet people where they are with technology. The same could be said for people who don’t respond to email, Erik.

    3. Mba Business says

      Great post. Thanks for giving information about 5 Signs You Suck at Twitter.

    4. @Theresia, this is what happens when I write a blog post at 2:30 am.Cranky Erik decides he wants a turn. The original line was a more alliterative term for “penis drugs.”

      @Debbie and @Duke, noobies get a free pass. Read this more as a “please don’t do this,” rather than a finger-pointing screed.

      @Cindy, I’ve known people who schedule a whole raft of Good Morning tweets. That just seems disingenuous.

    5. Kris Setzekorn says

      Great post, Erik. Your recommendations are spot on! I hate random motivational messages and spam!

    6. Theresia Whitfield says

      “Stick to peddling penis drugs and fake watches by email”? Wow. Did you wake up on the wrong side of the bed this morning, Erik?
      Just kidding. I know you’re totally annoyed, and I get that! What annoys me are the people who follow thousands and have thousands of followers then add me to the mix expecting me to follow in return but we have absolutely nothing in common. Oh wait, I think that refers to point number three. Seems we’re on the same page. Oh, and then there’s the occasional sex-kitten who wants me to view her “pretty pictures”!
      Another awesome post, Erik!

    7. Thanks for detention time.

      I echo Debbie’s comment. Some of us are newbies and are still trying to get a handle on the best and non-sucking way to use this.

    8. Cindy Dashnaw says

      Those “good morning” and “good night” tweeters may mean well, but they annoy me the way an ad does that over-promises and under-delivers. I see a notification of a new tweet and the promise of some interesting tidbit, and then I’m disappointed. I’ll take my “good mornings” and “good nights” in person, please.

    9. Wow, thanks for the reminders, some of us are still learning how to use effectively…this helps.


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