gain twitter followers

Upon Reaching 5,000+ Twitter Followers… (Post 36)

So, as a lot of you know from this original piece (click here) I am on a quest to reach 100k twitter followers.  Am I out of my mind?  Probably.  Anyway, my thought is to relay my twitter experience here at 5,000 / 10,000 / and then every 10k or so after that.


Some interesting things have become more concrete since I first started to really focus on twitter.  Some great, some meh, and some I don’t know yets have taken shape.  I’m going to list them for you below and spend a little time discussing them.  If this is not your thing, feel free to click away.  I’m sure I’ll have a more “slice of life” piece tomorrow or maybe never or maybe go jump in a lake.  You’re still here?  Great, you’re the one I wanted to talk to anyway.  Let us begin.  (And, as always, I’d love to know what you think in the comments section.)


content is king:  I’ve known this for quite some time on the internet – that you have to be making something.  You can’t just post one day and then wait 5 months or the next year to post again and expect something to happen.  You have to be creating OR CURATING (a word on that in a moment) all of the time or at least on a pretty regular schedule.  What I do is twitter jokes.  New content based on current news or pop culture or whatever pops into my head at the time.  However, that’s not all I do.  If I find something that REALLY appeals to me – an article on social media, a tv show I’m really into (Downton Abbey), a funny video or post someone else has made, or my live comedy show that I promote frequently – I post those too.  That’s what I mean by curate.  There are some people who, quite successfully, post nothing of their own.  Their feeds are curations of a style or a feeling/ mood and they are equally as good.


content is king

Content kings?


you need a “follow back” policy:  As far as I can see, there is only one real way to grow your audience on twitter and that is ADD PEOPLE.  You have to add people in a targeted way though – for example, I add bloggers, social media people, LA local stuff, and people who like comedy.  Once you add them, you have to decide how long to keep them on your list.  What I do is give them approximately 24 hours to follow back, if they don’t, they’re gone.  If they interact with me – they go on a list.  A list that I keep of my most interactive twitter peeps.  Ultimately, that’s what I want – an awesome group of people that I talk to and who talk back.  I don’t want to stand on Mount Twitter with a bullhorn and say my nonsense to the wind.  So, for the most part, that’s my follow back policy.


you will lose people / some people will be idiots:  If the only truth in life is, “death and taxes” then the only truth on the internet is, “people will unsubscribe and some people will be d*cks.”  It’s just inevitable.  BUT, if more people like what you’re doing than not – feck it.  Drive a stake through the heart of the vampires (by clicking the “block” button) and focus on the awesome, larger percentage.  If people “unsubscribe” or in the world of twitter, “unfollow” they are HELPING YOU.  That’s right, they are.  They’re not the right fit.  You’re Metallica and maybe they are the Bee Gees.  What I want is like-minded folks.  Twitter is my online hangout space and I never hangout with people I don’t like.  It’s simple, when you think about it.  It also helps to let the nonsense roll of your back.


stevie wonder unfollow unsubscribe

“I’m so glad I unfollowed that jackass.” – Stevie Wonder


i’m actually enjoying the experience:  I’ve written jokes on twitter before.  I’ve even curated interesting content.  What I probably didn’t do much of before was talk back.  Now I do whenever I can.  As such, I’m really enjoying a lot of my twitter followers.  You can tell there are some real humans behind their twitter accounts and those are the people I’m interested in first and foremost.


verified vs. unverified:  You know when you look at a twitter account and it’s got a blue check mark in a circle next to the twitter handle?  That’s a verified account.  Almost all of the verified accounts that I’ve seen have huge follower numbers.  Twitter is who verifies them and you can’t go looking for the twitter gods to ask.  They will come to you, supposedly.  What’s cool about the verified accounts is that they are able to keep a clean feed.  You can look at a verified account two ways – by seeing only what the account holder has written or by seeing both the @replies and everything the account holder writes.  I wish unverified accounts were given these options because when you really want to chat with people it can clog your feed.  I still interact, but I probably would even more if I knew that new people could read the feed itself and not all of the interactions / conversations piled on top of my content.


That’s it – my top of brain thoughts on twitter as I pass the 5,000k threshold.  It’s been interesting so far…



Sweet Mother is updated daily-ish on the quest to 365 posts.  Only 40+ to go.  Join me in the home stretch by hitting the “follow” button above.



You might also like:

Best Laid Twitter Plans



Photo creds:

twitter-sand, stevie, bk-kings


45 thoughts on “Upon Reaching 5,000+ Twitter Followers… (Post 36)

    1. It is the big button at the very bottom of the right hand column that says “Follow Me On Twitter”. (Sorry, to step in but the sooner you get there the better your chances for being 5,001).

      1. What? I don’t see that! Is SweetMother blocking my ability to follow her on twitter just because we had a (very minor) stalking incident that I was technically, according to court documents, responsible for?

      2. And since you don’t know me, that comment below was a joke. I just saw the teeny-tiny button at the bottom of the post, thanks to you Michelle, and realized I’ve been following Becky all along. In case you’re wondering, I’m not a huge tweeter, but I do have incredibly selective memory. =)

      3. Heheheh, I was responding to the first comment when this one came in. To say that it actually didn’t say “Follow Me” but had her real name @RebeccaDonahue. Which of course would be really bad if I pointed that out because of the whole stalking thing 😉

      4. mg, thank you for being forever helpful and FUNNY here. momma hearts you, BIG TIME. and one day i’m going to get that fp’d button up on canadica. sigh. so sorry it’s taking me so long. bogged down with job stuff. xo, sm

    2. christ, this feed with the two of you is so DAMN interesting. stace, i miss your blogging-ass. i’m like a comment-tardo this days, even with my own. i think i still have to answer comments from 3 wks ago and it’s not because i’m flooded with them…it’s because i’m flooded with life shit! but, you are right, there should’ve been a more obvious twit link in the post… there is one in the right sidebar though… momma loves you! xoxo, sm

      1. I think I’m safe to say, back in the day, I was also the one who gently suggested you put your follow button in a more prominent place. Am I trying to take credit for your success? Maybe, or maybe I just want that prize for being the 5,001st follower. Love ya!

      2. you gave me many brilliant ideas in the beginning. all of which i applied! which is really saying something. 😉 anyhoo, hope you are well, lady. and you know i’m going to troll, oops, i mean read you blog very soon. xoxo, sm

  1. Sweet Mother – you know I don’t tweet, but what you’re saying here is so true. “Ultimately, that’s what I want – an awesome group of people that I talk to and who talk back.” That’s exactly how I feel about blogging. I just need more than 140 characters. If I was on twitter, it would just be one run-on tweet. GAAAAHHH,

    1. honie! you are absolutely right in what you are saying. a lot of this stuff is true across a variety of platforms. i am sooooo with you that i need a longer forum to write. that’s why tumblr didn’t work for me when i tried it, but wordpress does. i think twitter is great for short term stuff AND for pushing ppl towards your blog. i’ve picked up a lot of views on my blog from twitter peeps. but, i think the trick is you can’t ONLY provide links to the blog. you have to provide something else too and that’s where it can become a pain in the arse/ fun. 😉 xoxo, sm

  2. I love your tweets Mom. I am still trying to figure out Twitter… I’m definitely lame. Don’t drop me, please, pretty please. I m working on being on there more often, but no doubt, I’m an old dog. New trick. Hard. Woof.

    1. you know, tales (second mom, it’s tales for short…bwwaahhhaa), sometimes it takes me a couple of gos to figure out these social media things. the first time i launched my twitter i wasn’t very active on it. for one, because i wanted to make sure it would last and for two because i didn’t totally get it initially. now i do. and you’ll never be dropped! loool. xo, sm

      1. No doubt… I need a real tutorial (hey, there’s your next post!). I’ve tried going on line to learn, but I am slow with tech, and need a personal tutorial. In the meantime, I follow yours, and get excited when new people follow me… but then realized how quickly they’ll be bored. Alas… a vicious circle. Enjoyed the post.

    1. as far as facebook, i DO do a lot over there. My main account has around 5,000 (a little less so i can keep it open for new peeps) and like 700 subscribers or something like that. altho, i DO post mainly the same content on fb that i post on twitter. people comment and interact tho, which is what i want. the difference is – with fb, i mainly know almost all of the people who are interacting with me. w/ twitter, i don’t. they are mostly people i have only ‘met’ through the platform, which i find interesting. as for youtube, i love, LOVE that platform. BUT, i can’t see yet or haven’t found a way to post original stuff there without hiring a crew (or at least finding a necessary person or two) to pitch in. everything i’ve done on there myself, I find pales in comparison to my blog and my twitter feed. i’m happy with the podcom videos tho… but, those are really just straight up stand up clips and not really original content. one day i’ll figure out the ‘turn key’ solution for me on youtube, but i just don’t have it yet. how about you? what’s your experience on there? xoxo, sm

      1. Well, I’ve only recently started to really look into social media. Up until recently, I mostly just used it for fun and for personal reasons. I’ve started pushing my FB page and producing more regular content for my YouTube channel, but my focus has mostly been on producing content for Teen Jazz (researching and writing the articles takes time). I’ve been trying to get feedback on what people want to see from me, but the only response I get are “likes” or “favorites” not actual constructive and honest feedback on either my shannon kennedy stuff or teen jazz stuff. I’ll figure it out one day!

      2. hmmmm, you know i read somewhere that that is the hardest thing to do… get someone to do something really actionable like leave feedback or donate to something. very difficult. entire online ad agencies are popping up to turn casual viewers into ppl who will take an action and it ain’t easy. i, for one, love your stuff. where is teen jazz tho? i don’t think i’ve seen that. i think i always visit eurolinguiste… is that not the one i should go to? xo, sm

      3. – it’s a website for up and coming musicians that I’ve had since 2004. I abandoned it for a while when I was at university, but I started reviving it around August. I’ve slowly but surely added the 100 or so archive articles back up, added new musicians and started putting up new articles. If you had time, or if you are interested, I’d absolutely love to talk to you about guest posting. Maybe doing an article on performance or something that fits across both comedy and music? I think it would be fun to draw comparisons between the two. Or even something about Twitter and social networking… It’s hard to churn out all the content on my own!

      4. i hear that… it’s really difficult. i have another idea… my brother is a music teacher in sf and has been in a couple of jazz-ish bands. what if i did a short interview of him/ stalking him by your example… what i mean by that is, i’d love for him to get more involved in the blogging world, but not sure he ever will. it might be a funny piece, i’m not sure… but, i think it could be. you’ve got a wealth of content if you interview a bunch of music teachers… i’m waiting to hear on yet another freckin’ job this week. but, stay on me, after i find out, i should know my sched better. xoxoxo

  3. Another epic article, Rebecca! Congrats on 5K followers! I’m proud of you for that.

    You mean I can’t just post links? Darn it. Oh well. Time to see if I can figure out how to schedule posts on Twitter.

  4. I’m with “Tales”. Because I am a Luddite, I don’t twitter much. I’m more of a voyeur, happy just to watch what’s going on from behind the curtain, laugh at your jokes, etc. But if you decide to give lessons on your blog, I’ll learn some of it by osmosis. Good luck on hitting 100k on Twitter and on your possible job.

    1. i think you have to do this stuff when and IF you want to. if not, don’t. they are not (social media platforms) the end all and be all…but, if you want to work towards selling something or opening up new opportunities then they are FREE, sweat equity, fan-community bldg platforms that really are bar none. xo, sm

  5. I’d find Twitter totally useless if it wasn’t for my lists. That’s the only way I can effectively interact with others. I keep all my lists private, and although I try to check in periodically with most of them, I usually stick with the lists where I’ve placed interactive and fun tweeps.

    1. another great point. i use lists A LOT. for example, there might be comedians that are huge and have huge follower counts. i know they may not follow me, but i still want to ‘check in’ on them. the nice thing about it is i can add them to a list and NOT follow them, so they don’t take up space in my list. i keep my lists public. if people are smart and create funny content, they should pilfer them… it’s like a rolodex for comedy and blogging. looool. xo, sm

  6. I have been on twitter for a few years now and have really not understood it very well – there are feeds I love and I promote my blog through it and occasionally I will promote a topic. I have seen it as mostly a conduit to a larger audience who might search for me, but it is not a place I hang out – I need to try that. I know of companies and individuals that just mirror their FB feeds and I don’t see the point in that.

    1. i think you have to interact and that’s the piece that i missed out on at first. but, i will say – i worked on my blog first (as you are) because if you don’t have a ‘place’ to drive new people to, what’s the point? once you have something you want to push tho, it’s grt. xoxo, sm

  7. I am loving my time on Twitter, too. Even though I doubt I’ll ever get to even 1,000 followers in this decade, I will keep plugging away at it because sometimes it’s a lot easier to just tweet a funny line than it is to write a blog post. Are there any good feeds you would suggest?

    1. i’m sure you will get to 1,000 – you’re authentic and funny and you write extremely well. and yes on the feed suggestions – check my lists – specifically, ‘comedy’ ‘socialmedia rawkers’ and ‘interactive tweepers.’ xoxoxo

    1. 400 is really good. i think i started w 500 way back when. so, the sky is the limit. and twitter is like it’s own f’en language. who knows, i may tire of it one day, but right now it’s grt… xoxo

  8. SM,
    I love your tweets. I read, enjoy, laugh, and like. I just don’t comment. Still getting used to it being an open arena of sorts…. just not used to commenting on things or making connections with people you don’t actually *know.* I had the same sense when I first started blogging, but seemed to have gotten over that. Maybe it’ll just take me some time.

    1. i so hear you on that, irun. but, when you’re ready to interact, it’s a great new way to bring people towards your stuff. i think the key is to find ‘like-minded’ people. literally, you have to target them. i find them through ‘twollow’ and twitter suggestions. xoxox, sm

      1. I agree that a niche is the way to attract like-minded people. Much like a blog, you need to find your audience. I run a lot and used to make that my generalized focused, but then realized I had more to say (or thought about more) and wanted to branch out. I like the idea that those who don’t follow you are doing you a favour. Really, you want to relate to your audience. You don’t want to be trying to convince them of something they probably don’t want to hear.

  9. I count my Twitter followers in double digits so far but I can so relate to the conversation aspect you mentioned. While I was just scratching for another way of saying ‘buy my book’, I was bored out of my brain. But just recently I’ve started having brilliant conversations with people on Twitter. So brilliant in fact that I keep forgetting to tweet about The Book. I know this is ‘bad’ but… surely if I’m bored with something others will be bored too? So bugger it! I’m going to have fun, just the way I do on my blog. 😀 Now if only there were more hours in the day…

  10. One of these days I will be better at actually reading, responding, paying attention to Twitter. Right now, well not so good at it. I did however push you follow button and will try hard cause, well I am a not so closeted lover of Sweet Mother.

  11. I’ve been contemplating the follow-back-everyone-approach as I get followed by dozens of folks a day who are clearly on the “let’s all follow each other back” bandwagon. You know who they are because their following and follower numbers closely match.

    But then I’d have to also pay attention to who was unfollowing me, because I wouldn’t want to keep following a follow-me-I’ll-follow-you’er if they stopped following me.

    It just sounds like a lot of work.

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