It might seem like a rather obvious question. You might even think the answer is obvious too. People follow accounts to receive information - but how does that help you know how to engage with followers?
Just what type of information is the biggest incentive for someone to follow your brand on Twitter?
The answer, or the answer as revealed in a survey by Complete in June 2011, has actually been published by Twitter in their guide for UK small businesses.
The results are quite revealing and reinforce the long held belief that people follow brands out of self interest, but a surprisingly high proportion of people do so for customer service reasons as well as the traditional 'offer-led' followers.
Below is a graph showing the reasons users gave for following brands on Twitter:
Despite this information, and the very heavily orientated 'purchase' nature of its findings, there are still a huge number of companies and organisations in the UK publishing the same old tweets time and time again.
It's all well and good telling people you exist, what you do and where you are, but a combination of just two of the above bars can unleash a whole new marketing weapon on Twitter.
Are you offering your followers the discounts and offers they're seeking? Or, even more powerfully, are you doing so by making them exclusive to Twitter? People like to feel loved. They want to see brands being loyal to their customer base and if they've taken the time to follow you - why not give them something in return?
The "Company news" bar is also an interesting one. We keep telling people this time and time again - you'd be surprised how many people might want to know what is happening within your organisation.
Yet so many opportunities are missed. Tell people what's going on, what events have you planned, who's new in your company, are your staff supporting any particular charities through activities, what new product launches you've got pending, will they be exclusively revealed to Twitter before everyone else?
When you sit down and look at what's happening in any company, regardless of size - you've always got content.
So, take your time to look at the above graph again. Digest it and consider how you might be able to provide your followers with the content they're looking for.
You'll be surprised how the statistics bear out - they do offer a good reflection of what Twitter users in the UK are looking for.
p.s. feel free to ask us about our latest Twitter exclusive offers on training - we do try to practice what we preach! ;-)