This week I thought I will use my blog not only to post marketing or technology related info but use it for some real-time data analysis. One of the primary reasons I took the opportunity of using my blog is to satiate my innate desires to understand any issue from 3 important aspects: Logic Building, Asking the right question and last but not least intuitive analysis.

So you may ask why so? In the beginning of this week, Robert Scoble discussed about Twitter noise referring to unnecessary monologues on “What are you doing”. So I thought what better way than discussing the same topic/issue with Tweople (referring to inhabitants of Twitter) themselves. So I asked a simple question to most of my followers in Twitter and they responded back. Thanks a ton fellas!

The question: Why u *FOLLOW* or *Un-FOLLOW* someone in Twitter?

Methodology: Launched a survey on 19th May via tweets asking the same question. Till date got about 32 responses off 310/203 i.e. “Following/Followers” in my Twitter profile through Twitter replies, direct messages (DM’s), emails and additional few responses came from other sources anonymously.

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Who responded:

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1. Afzal Khan (
Chris Brogan (
Daksh (
Netra Parikh
ideasmithy (
Subatomic (,
Franticnews (
labsji (
gsharma (
seanpaune (
watblog – Thanks for the link (
cruisemaniac (
mokshjuneja (
hiway (
juancarlosarzol (
Damiano (
Ravages (
shirleyjohn (
dhudiburg (
ronakshah (
vimoh (
shankargan (
palinn (
DDeeps (

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And many more who responded anonymously via other sources, So thanks to them also!

What did the statistics say?

The analysis is primarily divided into two types of graphs i.e. “Why we Follow in Twitter” and consequently “Why we Un-Follow in Twitter”. The graphs below show such:
The micro-survey results shows that 5 reasons come out to be more influential i.e. Follow those whose tweets are interesting & usable information, follow thought leaders and role models, Follow friends, Follow back those who follows you and last but not least latest tweet from users. Clearly, it seems that interesting & Usable info guides more twitter users to follow.On the hindsight, the survey portrays a clear and definitive response to why they un-follow in twitter. Spammy tweets is the clear winner and following it are less benefits from tweets, one-sided or monologues by Tweople, Un-follow them who doesn’t follow you and last but not least high SNR (signal-to-noise ratio) puts off users from following someone in Twitter.

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Findings & Conclusion

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There is no doubt that there is a lot of noise in twitter due to spam messages, blog links, self-glorifying updates, blog marketing and many more ways. But from the figures above, it is very much clear that usable information will get Tweople following you whereas spam messages will put Tweople off.

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According to DoshDosh, the Twitter community has grown more aware of these ’spammers’ and many tools like the Twitter Blacklist and Twerpscan have been developed to help Twitter users weed out people who try to follow many users in order to build a large audience. Still, a portion of Twitter users (perhaps the new ones) tend to add anyone who befriends them.

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Still my take from the data I have gathered is that most users want Twitter to be a much filtered source of information and social tool (thanks Afzal). And once Tweople understand and start applying this, it’s not far from the fact that signal/noise ratio will drastically improve since it’s still early days for twitter for all of us.

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One more interesting thing that I noticed is that Twitter is more for extrovert ones since at the end of it all you just type “What are you doing” and if you follow those two graphs up above, you will surely find some amount of coherence in our offline behavior as well as online i.e. we all want to read about what our mentors are doing, brand ourselves, let others know what we am interested in. So it won’t be wrong if I say that all of us want some amount of limelight.

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This is one of my many analysis that I will put forward in times to come. Hope you will participate in the near future to make it better and more indepth.

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Lastly, if you want a piece of me, follow me here in Twitter or Subscribe to my Blog RSS Feed.

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