Being Responsive Gains Twitter Followers: And Other Lessons from @GaryVee's Twitter Data

by Jason Keath on Jun 13, 2012
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Originally published on the Simply Measured blog by Libby Snead

Rising above the noise and building an influential presence on Twitter is no small feat. Using our Twitter Analytics, we’re starting a new series to share data from Twitter’s leading voices.

Our goal is to understand how these top individuals have built and sustained their profiles.

This week, our analysis focuses on Gary Vaynerchuk (@GaryVee).

In case you don’t know, Gary is co-founder of Vayner Media and a self-trained wine and social media expert.

Since launching his Twitter account five years ago, he has become a highly engaged, thought-leader in the Twittersphere.

Review the complete @GaryVee Twitter Analysis. –>

Averaging a daily growth rate of nearly 100 new followers, and sending over 60 Tweets per day, Gary’s Twitter presence continues to expand. Based on the data, here is why this is happening.

Being Responsive & Creating Conversations: Key Traits of a Good Influencer

Responding Often

On average, Gary replies to 8% of his over 2,700 mentions per week. By engaging like this, he builds the perception that he is involved with his community, not just talking at his followers.

Responding Quickly

Gary is also quick to engage with his followers. His response time is normally within 30 minutes of someone mentioning him. This reinforces the idea that he is not only listening to what the community says, but he also converses with those same people.

Responding at All Hours

The majority of the day, Gary is interacting on Twitter. His “business hours” appear to be from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM Pacific Time. This level of accessibility strengthens the idea that he is there to support and be involved with his community.

Staying On Topic

Based on his most influential topics, listed to the right, we see that Gary “stays on message.” These directly reflect what he has built his image around. We can assume that this strategy helps retain followers as he continues to share content that is related to what originally motivated them to follow him.

Being Like Gary

Building a lasting Twitter presence with 900,000+ followers is a worthwhile goal. Based on Gary’s success, key elements of a long-term Twitter approach are: be responsive, accessible, and build a community, not just a following. Doing this will keep people interested in what you have to say and entice new followers to join in the conversation.

Curious to learn more about your own Twitter presence?
Try our Free Twitter Report.

Post Author

CEO and founder of Social Fresh, the social media education company. Jason is a social media consultant, a social media speaker and industry analyst. He consults with corporations and agencies on social media strategy, building community, and influencer...

  • Holy guacamole, Batman! Clearly Gary doesn’t sleep. I’m impressed and inspired, but also wondering what’s the small take away for others? Gary’s raised the bar oh so high! 

  • My only issue with this, is that while it does highlight what Gary does now to grow and tend to his larger following, it doesn’t really talk about what Gary did to gain such notoriety. That one line “building a community” happened while he was Gary Vee, the guy who does wine videos, not the social media agency owner. In other words the guy who made buying wine social made his community, which made the transition into the “please share your wisdom with us” audience that much easier. Also no one should ever overlook the insane energy GV comes at you with. You are almost out of breathe watching him speak. Good post though, just hope people don’t think these are tips to building a community. They are more of a “how to be a good leader to a large following” 

  • middlefingermusic

    Kinda misleading and useless information. Stats are cool but no real analysis of his content on Twitter and most importantly, off of it from the past. That’s when and how he build his following, providing great content on Wine Library TV and then engaging with people who had questions. He did go out an searched twitter too for related questions from people who don’t know him and answered questions. 

    Just being responsive wont build your following. Reason why you should be contacted is. 

  • Interesting figures indeed! Thanks a lot for this page.

  • Great point Juan – And hopefully you’ve read Gary’s “Thank You Economy.” Had coffee with GV yesterday and left with the energy to tackle the challenges I brought to him. Of all the people in this industry, he’s the only one I have met who really and truly gets it. 

  • Barry (@BarryLaminack)

    Agree with some of the other comments. This talks more about how he keeps his 900k followers, not how he got his first 100k. My guess is that followers are a lot like money, once you have enough, it’s a lot easier to get more. I don’t want to hear about how a multi-millionaire became a billionaire, I want to know how he made his first million. 

  • Ryan Key

    Gary VEE has built a brand around himself and did it very organically and smart. Of course he can get a huge number of followers to retweet and repost.