To Follow Or Not To Follow? The Simple Twitter Tool That Helps You Decide

This is a guest post by Megan O’Neil, resident web video expert and predictor of all things viral at our sister site

How do you decide if someone is follow-worthy? When you get that friendly email, “So-and-so is now following you on Twitter”, how do you decide whether or not to follow “so-and-so” back? It can often be hard to make a snap-judgment, based on the minimal details you’ve got readily available—the user’s avatar, description and the last 15-or so tweets. That’s where twtrland comes in.

Founders Eytan and Noam Avigdor aimed to solve two main problems with twtrland—to make sense of Twitter for non-Twitterers, and to help people easily decide whether or not someone is “follow-worthy.” How does it work? Basically, twtrland takes your entire Twitter profile and stream and turns it into a single profile page that can give you a quick idea of what it would be like to follow that person. They explain it as follows:

“We take a bag of tweets, analyze them, and create a profile page which show-casts the person behind them. Currently we focus on behavior patterns, Famous words, Top Followers, Links, Replies, Songs, Pictures and Check-Ins.”

As you can see from the screenshot below of my twtrland profile, searching for a user on shows you how any followers they’ve got, who their top followers are, how often they tweet, how often they are retweeted and more. You can also browse their “Famous words” (i.e. their most-retweeted Tweets), as well as some of their plainer Tweets, some of the links they’ve shared, pictures they’ve posted, and how they interact with other Twitter users. Each profile also includes a pie chart visualization that shows you the percentage of plain tweets, replies, pictures, links, mentions, and retweets that make up the user’s stream. It’s everything you need to know to make an education decision about whether to follow (or not to follow) that person.

As the founders put it, “Twitter has become so much more than the ‘I’m hungry’ kind of service” it started out as, where people tweeted about the mundane details of their lives. Our Twitter feeds are now made up of 140- character posts that define who we are. The goal of twtrland is to make that information visible, and I think they’ve done a wonderful job of it.

From the twtrland homepage you can check out the profiles of some of your favorite celebrity tweeters like Shaq, Justin Bieber, Bill Gates and Conan, or enter the Twitter name of someone that your trying to decide whether or not to follow. Let us know what you think…Is twtrland is a tool that you can see yourself using?