What is #followfriday?
It started with Micah Baldwin (@micah) over a year ago as a way to recommend people on Twitter whose tweets he enjoyed. It quickly became a phenomenon. Every Friday thousands of people on Twitter use the hashtag #followfriday or #ff to suggest people to follow (in a single tweet). For example:
It is recommended you keep it to one tweet a week (this is not about tweeting everyone you know with everyone you know). Ideally, try to pick less “popular” people even if they don’t have a lot of followers. Rather, recommend people because they consistently have something useful or entertaining to say. The truth is you don’t have to recommend the Twitterati as even n00bs will have no trouble discovering Robert Scoble, Pete Cashmore, and Ev Williams in short order on their own. If you are truly interested to see who endorses whom then TopFollowFriday.com does the job.
It is very important to include #followfriday or #ff somewhere in your tweet so others can find it on Twitter Search. Also important, don’t start your tweet with an @ or Twitter will think it is a reply.
Taking it one step further…
Now that Twitter has Lists (and Annotations are just around the corner) you might think that a kitschy meme like #followfriday will fall out of favor. But according to LetsTell’s Twitter Hash Tag Indexer, it still remains in the top 10 of all hashtags on any given day. Quite frankly, it is the only hashtag that has lasted with any measure of consistent meaning. Most hashtags tend to be extemporaneous, best used to inspire conversations (and in the process get new followers) around a campaign or an event.
Using #followfriday to tweet a list of people you endorse is fine but why not send them to your blog? Chris Brogan made a simple suggestion on his blog recently: tweet a link back to your blog where the list of people (Twitter links) reside in a post. Yes, of course, do this and reap the benefit of the extra web traffic.
Schedule a new post every Friday with different themes like favorite authors, success coaches, or b2b marketing gurus (wink). You could even recommend your own Twitter Lists!
By the way, if you are having trouble deciding who to endorse, The Twitter Tag Project has a niffy little tool to help.