Twitter CEO says the important stat is reply rate, not follower count

Twitter Jack Dorsey on Twitter follower count and reply rate

I love this quote from the CEO of Twitter on the number of followers a person has:

“I don’t think that’s the number you should be focused on. I think what is more important is the number of meaningful conversations you’re having on the platform. How many times do you receive a reply?”

Too often we use Twitter as a broadcast medium, and not a conversation medium. I wrote back in 2014, Why do you use Twitter?:

The real motivation here is people. People to connect with. Not people to broadcast to.

Everyone should really have just about 100 people they are following. That’s the reality. But those numbers are soooo tempting. You have to follow people to get people to follow you back! You have to play the game to find those people who you might just connect with. The game!

There are other reasons to use Twitter, one of them is simply to have a place to showcase your work. That’s what I’m currently doing with with the @tribuneagency Twitter account. Honestly, I haven’t engaged much with this account. I’ve been too busy trying to highlight the range of content that we have.

Since I started managing the @tribuneagency Twitter account last week, I start to understand the challenges that media companies face when on Twitter. But I do need to start interacting more with others using this account. It’ll come. Right now I’m getting my workflow straightened out. It’s exciting to think how @tribuneagency can become a better part of the media landscape.

And that’s what it’s about. How are you a part of your landscape? Are you just blasting messages out? Or are you listening and engaging with others?

Last year, I took a look at the reply rate of the top 10 journalists on Twitter. The median rate for the top 10 is about 24%, which is pretty impressive. I’d imagine that the accounts for the top media companies don’t engage nearly as much. Different goals, I suppose.

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