When you sign up for a Twitter account, the service helpfully sends you an email each time somebody follows you. This is useful information, certainly when you first begin to use the network.
However, as your presence on the platform matures, and with it your follower count, these emails can become a bit of a nuisance. Recently, I deactivated these updates from Twitter, and instead switched to SocialToo’s once-a-day update instead.
What Is SocialToo?
SocialToo is a web-based service that provides a lot of helpful tools to Twitter users, including auto-follows, auto-unfollows, follower synchronisation, and more.
One of the best features on SocialToo is the daily email they send out which notifies you which folk have followed and, more importantly, unfollowed you on Twitter in the last 24 hours.
Previously this was a free service, but earlier this month they started to charge for this extremely convenient feature. The cost to you (and me)? Just $20, which is a one-time, lifetime subscription, and payment can be made via Paypal.
I was happy to make this payment, and in this article I will outline my reasons.
Why Did I Do This?
1. Too Many Emails From Twitter
I have about 2,500 followers but even at this fairly modest level I can get up to 100 new follower emails from Twitter in any given day, especially during something like #followfriday. These emails to my inbox can become overwhelming, and as everything also parses to my Blackberry, it borders on a nuisance.
Naturally, I welcome (and encourage) new followers, so the issue was purely with Twitter’s email update. I’d even set up a filter that pushed all these bulletins to their own folder, but then I found that I just ignored them. SocialToo allows me to quickly and easily see who has followed me with just the one update.
2. I Like To Track Unfollows, Too
One feature that SocialToo provides that Twitter does not is the service also tracks the users who unfollow you on the network, too. Moreover, it does it’s very best to show you when this happened, by listing the tweet you most recently submitted before they cut you off. This isn’t an exact science, but it’s often extremely useful information.
Additionally, sometimes people I like and often engage with can unfollow me, either on purpose or by accident, and this allows me to follow this up and see if there’s a genuine issue, or whether Twitter was being its occasional mad self.
3. I Was Getting Gamed
Each and every day I get followed, unfollowed and followed again by the same 15-20 accounts. One can only presume they do this because they want to maintain themselves at the top of my list of followers, in the hope that others will see them on the front page and think they’re worth a follow too. Perhaps they think this behaviour will make me think they’re a worthwhile addition to my flock, when of course the polar opposite is actually true.
Either way, getting those same ‘new’ follower emails from these guys was starting to become extremely irritating. I’ve blocked many of them, and will continue to do so when I see this behaviour, but more and more seem to do this each and every week. What’s a bit shocking is one or two of them are fairly big names/accounts – I hope, in these cases, it’s a glitch on Twitter, and not something they actually think is acceptable etiquette.
4. Keep It Simple, Stupid!
One email each day that covers everything I need is of course far more useful to me than any number of updates that actually provide less information. It’s a lot simpler to track my followers this way, and it continues to bemuse me why Twitter doesn’t offer an email digest option of their own.
I can perhaps understand why they wouldn’t want to inform you of unfollows, as that possibly clashes with the ethos of the company, but I imagine that virtually everybody opts out of the email updates when they reach a point in their account when the bulletins become an issue.
SocialToo has many other free features and if you already use the website but choose to opt out of the email updates the rest of the service will not be affected.
For me, the daily email update is now the primary reason why I use SocialToo. I used to have the site auto-follow all my new followers but after the Mikeyy incident, and the huge influx of spammers we have seen to the network in recent weeks, I decided to opt out of this.
Now, I only follow people who engage with me, or have good things to say. I continue to monitor my new followers, and check them all out using SocialToo’s email, and by doing this I avoid spam, trolls, mass-marketers, bots, automatic re-tweeters and other unnecessary clutter in my network.
It’s important to optimise your Twitter stream. Keep it relevant. And one of the best and easiest ways to do this is via SocialToo.