If you believe that you can find genuine friendships online, I think your setting yourself up to have a lot of disappointments. It’s not that you can’t, but the reality is that the majority of people that are “friending” and “following” you, are doing it out of a networking strategy, specially on Twitter.
I’m O.K. with this. It’s no big deal. That’s the beauty of a service like Twitter. It’s a marketers dream come true. But just don’t try to fool me and pretend otherwise. Online is a little bit harder to tell who is genuine and who is not, but you still can tell. Aliza Sherman from Web Worker Daily warns:
If you are following everyone you can in the hopes of building up your “captive” audience, I think that comes with the risk of having a lot of people following you back who really aren’t interested in what you are doing or what you have to say. I think when you look at someone with 9000 followers on Twitter, it looks impressive, but when they are following 8700 people in return, you begin to wonder how many of those people following them are really paying attention.
My advice is to follow the people that you find interesting, but don’t expect them to follow you back and please, don’t complain publicly that your going to un-follow them because they don’t follow back. It makes you sound like a disillusioned teenager discovering that his favorite rock singer is actually a prick.