In a nutshell, the Twitter ecosystem resembles a pyramid. Where you are on the pyramid roughly depends upon the number of followers you have, and your following-to-followers ratio.

If you’re into amassing followers, witty content helps, but for people who associate their Twitter account with themselves (ie, not @BPGlobalPR), it’s really a just a facet of your public persona. Important person = important Twitter. Content has very little to do with it.

Take, for instance, @the_real_shaq. Take a look at those tweets. Seriously, read them. 3 million followers, and it ain’t cuz of the content. Furthermore, he’s following 611 people at the time of this writing. Followers-to-following? ~5000:1

How big somebody’s mega-phone is directly correlates to the social power that they wield. Despite the quality of his tweets, tell me you wouldn’t be smiling if he @’ed you. 3 million impressions is a whole lot of clout, even if it has nothing to do with your industry or core focus.

The Twitter Pyramid

How high their followers-to-following ratio is indicates how much they respect the people they are following. Somebody who follows as many people are following them essentially look like “I’ll scratch yours if you scratch mine” folks. It’s kiss-ass and it shows. Following 611 while being followed by 3M screams “People want to listen to me, and I don’t have to beg for it.”

When you apply this across the entire fabric of our Twitter ecosystem, it forms a pyramid. That dude that everyone in you industry respects and follows? You’d love to have him RT a link back to your site. Guess what? He’s be equally as happy if the mayor of his city tweeted about him, and that mayor would be elated if Shaq RT’d something he said. It works all the way up. And guess what? Shaq doesn’t give a damn if you RT him because he doesn’t know who you are. Trust me, your content isn’t winning him over.