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3 Secrets of a Twitter Madman

437,356 groupies.

3 Secrets of a Twitter Madman

Um, no. This is not Martin...

Oops, I mean followers.

Yep, my friend Martin Zwilling has 437,356 followers on Twitter.

So you must be thinking, wow, this guy Eric is friends with movie stars or something. He must be chillin’ with celebrities like Kim Kardashian, Charlie Sheen and Martin Zwilling.

Wait a minute.  Hold the phone.  Have you ever heard of Martin Zwilling before?

Didn’t think so.

But that’s the cool thing:  Martin is an average, normal business guy just like you and I.

So if he can get over 400,000 followers on Twitter, why can’t we? Well, that’s just what I wanted to find out from Martin.  So I hooked up with him, hoping he’d pull back the curtain to reveal some of his secrets… and he did.

So, without further delay, here’s my chat with the wild Twitter man; Martin…

1st Secret Revealed:  437,356 and Counting.  How?

So Martin, how in the world did you get so many followers on Twitter? What is your secret? What strategy did you use to build your following?

First, I proactively follow as many new people as I can every day – anyone whose profile looks like my target customer, or who talks about targeted subjects in their tweets.  This can be done manually with Twitter, but I have also tested other tools, such as TweetAttacks.  There are hundreds of tools out there, but the point is to find what works for you and do it on a daily basis.

Second, I provide something of “value” to my followers on a daily basis. I provide up to six tweets daily, with pointers to the “best of the best” articles for entrepreneurs, which are my target customers. The idea is my follower can read my tweet stream and link to a useful, pre-filtered channel of information every day.  If your channel is empty for even a few days, people stop following.

To help me do this, I use the service SocialOomph:  It automatically sends a welcome message to new followers, and it spreads the tweets out across the day — so they don’t all come in a big clump”.

2nd Secret Revealed:  Following 384,554.  How?

And wow, you follow a whole bunch of people yourself. What is your secret on managing so many followers?  How do you handle engagement on that level?

The secret here is to extract from the stream only those messages addressed directly to me, or talking about me or my business: Startup Professionals.

I use TweetDeck to do this.  In fact, I only get a few business messages per day requiring a response, and of course, I respond to every one.  Overall, I’ve allotted no more than an hour a day for all Twitter and other social media activities, usually early morning or late evening.  Not a high price for the value and learning I get from it.

3rd Secret Revealed:  Impact on Business

So, how has having 437,356 followers impacted your business? In other words, what are the real world results you’ve seen?

Twitter has clearly helped me build my brand.  It brings me real leads; both directly through Twitter and indirectly by Twitter users talking to their friends.  Because of the many followers; people give me great credibility, speaking invitations, and book sales.

For example, my large following entices great book authors to send me a review copy of their latest book, which I might mention to my followers.  In turn, these books keep me up to date and expand my expertise.  And that helps me close even more business as a consultant.

Great stuff Martin.  Thanks so much for sharing.  And actually, you’re pretty smart.  Not a madman at all.

So there you go folks.  3 Secrets from a Twitter Sane-man who has over 400,000 followers.

Tell me, are you gonna be next to reach 400k and what are your secrets for getting there?

About the Guest Author: Eric T. Wagner is a husband, father and life-long entrepreneur. After starting multiple businesses, he is now focused on helping entrepreneurs nail it too.  Uncover Eric today at: Mighty Wise Media.

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  • Hi Jeff,

    very impressive. 

    I grow my followers by 5% every day. So in 135 days I should have more followers than Martin. Hopefully I can monetize it just as he has.

    I always enjoy reading your articles and always look forward to your next one.

    Btw, thanks for following me on Twitter. I followed you back 😉


    • Thanks for the comment Jorgen. The secret with Twitter is targeted followers that want to read your unique content and it does require persistence :).

  • Great blog!  Too bad that photo isn’t Martin, it’s hilarious.

  • Glad I took the time to read this post. The post has to be the best way to gain followers out of all the one’s I have come across through the last year or so. Going to try to spread this one around some.

  • I just opened up a Tweet Deck account. Looks a bit messy, but I guess I get used to it. Which columns do you recommend I’d use?

    • Hi Kris…  Not sure what Jeff uses, but I use the one for my tweets, for direct messages and for mentions.  Just 3 basic to start.  If you have a ton of people you are following, trying to keep up with the main stream is impossible.  Hope this helps…  Eric

  • Hi Jeff,

    Those are some heady numbers.

    I no longer follow back everybody because my stream becomes too messy…but following back does generate many followers.

    Add value, engage, rinse, wash repeat. Persist like heck. Keep at it everyday and you can develop a large following too.

    Thanks for sharing Jeff.


  • Thanks Jorgen for the comment. Let the competition begin 🙂

  • Thanks Richard for the question. You will get spammers following you no matter what you do. You will notice that they seem to disappear after time as Twitter culls them. So don’t agonize over them, just ignore them. It will save you a lot of time!

  • Thanks Jorgen..  Keep me posted.  Love to do a follow up and see how you do against Martin.  He’s pretty tough to beat though…  🙂

  • Hi Jeff, Thanks for having Eric as a guest author. This is a very helpful article with a fantastic image. I think Martin would have been proud if that were him.

    I keep bumping up against my 2000 limit for people I follow. I’m at almost 1500 followers now, but I have to limit whom I follow back. I keep culling but I follow a lot of news sites that don’t follow back. 

    Once I break through the 2000 limit, I will try to follow more people to broaden my Twitter following.

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