‘I can’t follow you back because I’ve reached a limit.’
‘I’ll follow you back once I figure out why Twitter won’t let me follow anyone else.’
Sound familiar? Or maybe you have followed over 2,000 people on Twitter and then can’t follow anyone else. Well, guess what? You’re not stuck at following 2,000.
1. Starting Out
When you first opened your Twitter account, you were all excited that someone, anyone, followed you. So, of course, you follow back. Which is great – until you hit that 2,000 ratio limit and can no longer follow anyone back.
What is that about exactly?
Twitter decided that you can’t be following 10% more than are following you – after the 2,000 mark. So for example, if you’ve followed 2,200 accounts, you need 2,000 followers in order to follow any more.
According to the Twitter Help section:
"If you've reached the account-based follow limit (2,000 users), you’ll need to wait until you yourself have more followers before you can follow additional users. Follow limits are system-wide; Support cannot remove or adjust your follow limits."
So, you have to wait, right? Wrong.
I learnt about ManageFlitter (MF) way back in 2009 when I quickly hit the ratio limit and didn’t know how to move past it. I see people every day say the same thing who don’t know they can take action! In fact, every few days I tweet out the following:
‘nobody is stuck at following 2K. Use free @ManageFlitter to unfollow inactives, eggs, nonfollowbacks.’ (I use the Pro version to manage multiple accounts.)
The entire purpose of ManageFlitter is to manage your Twitter account. Most likely, since that first excitement of discovering you have followers, a large number of these followers have unfollowed you, become inactive (30 days or more with no tweets), still have an ‘egg’ as an avatar, are fakes, etc. These are not accounts that can help you in any way, nor can you them. So dump ‘em.
Another Twitter Rule: you cannot follow more than 1,000 accounts per day. However as a new Twitter account if you follow more than even 100 accounts per day when you first start out, Twitter may suspend your account. Using ManageFlitter to target specific accounts (i.e., using search terms for your interests) is a very effective way to find targeted accounts to follow - this helps you make best use of your 100 daily follows.
Personally, I use ManageFlitter daily – for my own accounts and that of my clients. I can follow up to 500 accounts daily (on my personal account) without worries of suspension because my account is active and large. The best way to grow is to follow others – in a targeted way.
As I said above, I actively follow up to 500 accounts every day on my main @RachelintheOC account. By using ManageFlitter’s fabulous Account Search function, I’m able to search on a keyword via account bios or tweets. By far, one of my favorite features.
3. Unfollow Tips
Unfollows: I generally give people about a week to follow me back. If they’re active on Twitter, they should see that they have new followers and a week is plenty of time to follow someone back. Start at the last page – these are people you followed earlier than those on page 1 or 2.
- I limit unfollows to no more than a few hundred. Twitter is wary of too much ‘churn’, where you follow and then unfollow large amounts of people.
- No profile image: Unfollow them all. If someone can’t be bothered to add some type of photo to their avatar, they’re probably either a bot or spammer account, or someone who needs some time to get up to speed.
- Inactives: I used to dump all the inactives. Now I look a bit closer – how inactive are they? If it’s been a few years…unfollow. If only one month…wait a bit. Many inactives still read your feed, they just don’t tweet much. So you could potentially be unfollow readers/customers.
- Non-English: Many people are bilingual, so I’m more careful with this category.
- Fakes: Sometimes we inadvertently follow fake accounts. ManageFlitter is able to determine whether an account is fake -- and that’s a sure sign you need to unfollow. As for fake followers, you cannot control if fake accounts follow you. I find they come in waves.
Regardless, your option is to block them, and you should. Fake followers cannot help you.
I hope this article has helped you understand a bit more about Twitter and how to get past the ratio limits and still stay within their guidelines. ManageFlitter is a wonderful tool to help you target specific tweeps and save a lot of time!