sly : marketing

Unfollow Twitter Users – The Easy Way

unfollow twitter users

I love free things, and recently I wrote about how I find Free Kindle Books, now I’ll show you how I unfollow Twitter users, by using a free tool called Tweepi (I’ve also created a list of 19 different tools you can use to unfollow Twitter users).

But first.

Why do I unfollow Twitter users?

The reason I started writing this post in the first place, was because I read an article from Bill Dorman, about someone who unfollowed him on Twitter. I higly recommend that you read it. We might never understand why someone unfollows us, unless we ask. To me, there are only two reasons why I decide to unfollow Twitter users:

1. They are not following me, or
2. They are not active

I am not one to judge who people are, their opinions, and their mood, or whatever. People can write whatever they want, and if I find what they’ve written to be offensive, I might filter their messages for a while. But, I only unfollow Twitter users based on if they’re not following me or if they’re not active.

Unfollow Twitter Users – 16 Tools

You can unfollow Twitter users manually, by finding the users on Twitter and unfollowing them, or you can use a service that makes it a lot easier. But before you start unfollowing, you need to ask yourself why you want to unfollow someone. Let’s discuss it in the comments.

Here’s a list of 16 tools to unfollow Twitter users:

At the moment, I’m using the free version of Tweepi to unfollow Twitter users.

Tweepi – video tutorial on how to unfollow Twitter users

I have created a video tutorial about how I unfollow Twitter users, based on if they’re not following me, or if they’re not active on Twitter.

I’m still experimenting with video, but hopefully I’m getting better at it.

Do you use any tools to unfollow Twitter users?

66 responses to “Unfollow Twitter Users – The Easy Way”

  1. Raj says:

    I got bored with the marketing messages (only) that I was getting in Twitter. So, I have unfollowed everyone. Yeah, I don’t use twitter any more 🙂 Maybe it was because I was following users in a particular technical based niche.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Raj,

      I use Twitter all the time, and I have short conversations with lots of different people, so it’s possible even for marketers to use it for other things than to get clicks and spreading sales messages. But I certainly understand what you’re saying. It takes time to filter all the spam from direct messages, but I use lists, and I follow the people I like to have “daily” chats with.

  2. If try to keep my twitter stream REALLY focussed – I often don’t follow people I already have on Facebook, G+ etc … what would be the point in following the same person everywhere?

    I don’t follow many people on Twitter – and I don’t have friends on Twitter.

    If someone’s tweets are uninteresting to me that equals noise to me and I stop following – that DOES NOT mean I think they suck, or are a horrible person, or that I wish to end the relationship … following the same people across all social media platforms makes no sense.

    If you are online for business you have to be focussed.

    Would you let 20 people come into your store or office and drink coffee everyday because you don’t want to hurt their feelings by saying “hey dudes, I need to get some work done”?

    • Jens says:

      Hi Ameena,

      You have a very interesting point.

      I follow a lot of the same people on the different social sites, and that’s mainly because I have different types of conversations with them. On Twitter I’m very short and focused. On Facebook I’m more personal (add pictures and videos), and G+ is more or less the same as Facebook for me, but more niche based since none of my friends and family are using it yet.

      I agree with what you’re saying, and I believe that you can either use every social site for different reasons and follow different people, or you can use it for the same people, but in a different way (I hope you understand what I’m trying to say, it got complicated).

      I would certainly not let 20 people into my store for coffee, even though I am terrible at saying no (and doing things for free), but I’m learning a lot from you 🙂

  3. olatoun-graceny says:

    I will try the tweepi, I have I few I will like to unfollow but I find it very tasking doing it manually.Happy new year in advance.

    • Jens says:

      Tweepi is awesome, you can also use it to find people to follow. For instance, you can add my username and start to follow every person I follow (but not all at once) 🙂

  4. Leora Wenger says:

    I have used Friend or Follow in the past, but I find it time consuming and awkward (sometimes I can’t even remember why I am following someone, and that tool didn’t help).

    I will have to check out Tweepi.

    • Hi Leora,

      I have never used Friend or Follow, but Tweepi is awesome. I use it almost every single day.

      Let me know if you have any questions. You don’t have to upgrade to the premium version, I believe that the free version is more than enough for most people 🙂

  5. Ryan Biddulph says:

    Hi Jens,

    Going through a mass unfollow and I’ve been happy with The Twit Cleaner. So far I’ve released about 2000 tweeters over the past few weeks.

    I realize my stream was cluttered with stuff I wasn’t learning from. I follow someone if they add value to my stream, and if they don’t, I simply release them to make room for people who tweet value instead of promotional link after link.

    I also unfollow if someone is inactive. I am tweeting to connect with folks and if they aren’t around, I can’t connect with them. Unfollow.

    Bots are another definite unfollow. No social networking with bots, unless you are the Terminator and want to tweet with a cyborg/bot buddy 😉

    Thanks for sharing your insight and the helpful list Jens.


    • Jens says:

      Hi Ryan,

      Your strategy is the same as mine. I want to declutter my timeline so I can actually use it for something and learn.

      I haven’t tried The Twit Cleaner, but I’ll test it now. Tweepi has done an awesome job so far.

      Is it easy to find bots with Twit Cleaner?

      Happy New Year Ryan.

  6. Bhupendra Sharma says:

    Hi Jens,
    After reading your great post i understand that why I unfollow Twitter users and i didn’t aware of these great 16 tool.Now i will try to use these great tool to unfollow my user.Thanks for sharing..

  7. Bill Dorman says:

    I only have 7 followers; I can’t cut anybody loose. Plus, I tried that once w/ my mother and she was offended.

    There are several platforms in social and the primary ones I am a part of are Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn; Google + just because I signed up, but really don’t do much with it. To me, LinkedIn is the business platform and Facebook is the personal platform. Twitter seems to fall somewhere in between. However, they all seem to blend together at some place on the spectrum.

    From my experience, social is social and yes, you can be social in business. In fact, if you are not spending enough time developing the relationship it makes it much more difficult for me to know you and want to do business with you. I think there is some merit to actually ‘liking’ the people you are going to do business with.

    Everybody has their own strategy and what they think will work best for them. I can only speak for myself and what has worked for me. Out of my followers, there is probably 20% I interact with and the others are just there. However, through the use of lists, the others certainly aren’t a burden so I really have no reason to cut them lose. Hopefully at some time we will connect.

    I’ve got my eye on you, don’t be cutting me lose or I will hunt you down….:)

    • Jens says:

      Hey Bill,

      I haven’t been active on LinkedIn at all. How do you interact with your followers, do you do it by being part of various groups? I’ll have to start doing something about LinkedIn in 2012… that’ll be the year of networking.

      Being social is what it’s all about, my biggest problem is that I live in Norway, and most of my followers are not located in Norway and are more or less sleeping when I’m active 🙂

      Happy New Year Bill, and let’s be even more successful in 2012.

      • Bill Dorman says:

        I’m not active either; I just had it linked to my twitter account so it was picking up all my ‘stuff’. I have some friends who only do LinkedIn and all they were seeing was my stream and some thought it was too much.

        Granted, I only engage w/ a small percentage of my followers. If for some reason they got too big and hard to manage it might be nice to have an efficient way to cull your list. For some reason however, I don’t think I will have to deal with that.

        I’m guessing you just might have to tell the family you are going to start working the night shift, huh……….:)?

        • Jens says:

          That’s what I’ve been doing on LinkedIn, I haven’t even added my education and work (maybe just some of it). My profile is all messed up… but my tweets are being published, so I’m a little active. What I haven’t been doing is join various groups, and that’s probably where some of the real power of LinkedIn is.

  8. Carolyn says:

    Hi Jens, I keep bumping up against my 2000 follow limit so I have to cull every so often. I clear out those who haven’t tweeted in a while because I figure they are inactive. I’m hoping I can get my followers up above 2000 so I won’t have to worry about that anymore.

    I was using Friend or Follow but it’s difficult to use. I now use Flitter and like it a lot.

    Thanks for this. I think we all need to clear house every so often!

    • Jens says:

      Hi Carolyn,

      It took me a while to go past the 2000 follow limit as well, but I used TweetAdder and as soon as I did, it wasn’t a problem anymore. Now I haven’t been following new people in a while, unless they’ve followed me first.

      It’s important to keep cleaning up, I’m doing that with AWeber as well.

      Happy New Year Carolyn.

      • Carolyn says:

        TweetAdder sounds very interesting. If you need ideas for blog topics, that’s a good one! 😉

        • Jens says:

          That’s true 🙂 I’ll have to start adding future blog topics to a list or something so I won’t keep forgetting.

          I’m using “Things” on my Mac and iPad, but I keep forgetting adding things to it 🙂

  9. ExRat says:

    Hi Jens, thankyou for this helpful post. I have a client who was asking this question recently, so your list of 16 tools will be useful, although I will try your Tweepi tutorial first and if that works OK, I’ll just show him how to use that one. Thanks again.

  10. Jane says:

    Nice post. It is not only following all the time. When we are not getting right information or when there is no more glitter to entertain or refresh our thoughts, sometimes we may want to unfollow. Thank you for presenting various tools to achieve the same on Twitter.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Jane,

      Absolutely. I used to just follow new people all the time, but now I use more time to unfollow than to follow.

      Happy New Year Jane, wishing you all success in 2012 🙂

  11. Ray says:

    I actually just tried Tweepi. One thing I wonder about is whether it is safe to use it to follow or unfollow a lot of people all at once? I hear you shouldn’t follow too many people in a short period of time. I don’t know for sure just what I hear. If that is the case any idea how many would be safe and if it is safe to unfollow a bunch at the same time?

    • Jens says:

      Hi Ray,

      I wouldn’t follow or unfollow more than 200 people a day. That’s the most I have ever followed in a single day. I haven’t had any problems with this, but I haven’t been following or unfollowing people every day. So, some days I have been following/unfollowing 200 people, and other days I haven’t followed/unfollowed anybody. To me, it’s about not being aggressive.

      But I really don’t know how much you can do without getting banned. I have heard stories from a lot of people who have experienced being banned from Twitter, so don’t follow/unfollow too many at once 🙂

      Let me know if you have any question.

  12. Barry says:

    Unfollow tools can be used to keep only active members in your followers list. If you feel that members are not active or not following you closely you can exercise this option.

    The timeframe to take action should be decided carefully. Because, sometimes, inactive members will become active and may introduce new followers also. Some members will be active in certain seasons. Therefore broadminded approach is required in exercising unfollow option.

    • Jens says:

      You’re absolutely right Barry. I am usually not unfollowing people every single day, in case they become active. So, I unfollow a few times a month. This way people get the chance to “change” 🙂

  13. Great list of tools Jens!

    I have tried a few of them, but now I am rather careful of selecting whom I am following as it just adds to the clutter in my stream. I prefer having a few selective friends and follow those who seem genuine I guess I was following everyone who followed me initially and it never really worked out that ways for me. And I am much better off now with just a handful of people to follow on Twitter.

    Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Bill Dorman says:

      Well, obviously you are not too selective……you are following me aren’t you…..:). I will try to be more interesting; I promise. Please, oh please let me hang around……

    • Jens says:

      Bill has a point 🙂

      I’m not very careful about who I follow, but I usually only follow people in the same niche and with the same interests, unless I already have a personal connection with them.

      I have thought about starting a new Twitter account where I’ll be testing to follow only 20 people or so, to see if this will make me use Twitter differently. Maybe I’ll do that in 2012? 🙂

  14. QuinnCreative says:

    I unfollow people because they are rude, spammy, boring, or religiously proselytizing. I do follow people who don’t follow me back, because they are interesting, informative, write well, post useful links, and have a fresh viewpoint. I don’t care if people follow me back, although I’m always surprised at how little time people “give me” to follow them back before they dump me–about two hours. There are whole dayparts I’m actually working and not on Twitter.

    • Jens says:

      I have been following many people who are not following me back, and the reason was the same as yours, but now I’m using Twitter differently, and I’m doing my best to build a relationship with my followers and to learn more about marketing (so it’s basically a marketing tool for me).

      I don’t unfollow fast, I usually just do it once or twice a month, and I do it with people who are not following me or are inactive on Twitter, that’s it.

      Happy new year.

  15. Adrienne says:

    Hey Jens,

    I use Manger Flitter because I can see what they are tweeting before I make my final decision to cut them or not. Those are usually the people who aren’t following me but are active.

    I clean my Twitter account up rather frequently too. I always delete the ones that have never tweeted or who haven’t tweeted in quite some time and of course those who have asked me to follow them yet they haven’t taken the time to reciprocate. Why did you ask is my point.

    I will follow people through all the different social media platforms only because some people prefer connecting on Facebook, some on Twitter, others on Google + so I want to make sure that I’m connected with them everywhere because they may have their favorites. I certainly don’t want to make it difficult for them to share my content and I want to be able to do the same for them.

    Thanks for taking us through this video. You are becoming quite the pro. I love the little affects you have in there. What video editing software are you using if I might add? Looking forward to more videos from you and I have to get on the ball too!

    Happy New Year Jens…


    • Jens says:

      Hey Adrienne,

      I have never tested ManagerFlitter, but what you’re saying about seeing what people tweet before you unfollow them makes a lot of sense. I’m going to test it now, and see if I find it better than Tweepi.

      By the way, do you pay for anything related to Twitter, like a social media manager?

      I used to use Pluggio, and I paid $29 for a few months. It was a very good tool, but I didn’t think it was worth the price, when you get things like HootSuite for free (or $5 a month for the premium version).

      Happy New Year Adrienne.

      • Adrienne says:

        Hey Jens,

        There are so many good programs out there you can use for unfollowing and I do like the Tweepi service after having seen it. But I know not everyone is going to follow me back and I don’t follow everyone either. But all they have to do is just ask me to follow them and I’ll be more than happy to do so.

        I do like seeing what kind of things they tweet before deleting them. I might have to include some of them in other lists so I can start making a better connection with them.

        I don’t use any paid service for Twitter. I do schedule my tweets using SocialOomph only because when I’m visiting blogs and commenting, if I tweet that post at a time my followers aren’t on the computer then I haven’t done anyone any good. That’s the only reason I schedule them.

        Thanks Jens and Happy New Year my friend.

        • Jens says:

          I am also scheduling tweets, for the same reasons as you. I have been using different tools for that, but mostly HootSuite and Buffer.

          I have been thinking about creating several Twitter accounts, in order to use them for different purposes. Do you have several, or are you doing everything on Twitter with one account?

          • Adrienne says:

            Ana Hoffman suggests that you do have several and I did earlier this year but I’m going to be honest with you. It was too darn hard for me to keep up with them all. I’m not sure how everyone does that to be honest with you but I guess some are able to schedule things better. Me, way too much on my plate.

            • Jens says:

              That’s what I’ve been thinking. I just don’t know how I can keep up with all the different accounts. On the other hand, HootSuite seems to have a fairly easy interface for all the different accounts. But, I would have problems having conversations in all the various accounts at the same time. It wouldn’t be a problem to answer questions, but I probably wouldn’t be active starting conversations or joining conversations.

  16. ahoova says:

    as an active member of twitter since 2007, i follow a lot of folks that do not follow me back. the point of me following them was to capture the information they were sharing. i was not and am still not interested at all in a reciprocal twitter relationship.

    the information i seek does not mean i share the information those that i follow seek. if i was to hold by the rule of reciprocity, i would seriously be limiting myself on a vast variety of topics and interests and would hinder my ability to learn new things whether it be for my career or personal life.

    and on a side note, any time i have a new follower i go and check out their feed. if i notice that they have almost equal followers to followee numbers i automatically ignore that person.

    • Jens says:

      It’s very interesting that we use Twitter so differently. I have talked to many people about how they use Twitter, and almost all of them are saying different things about their strategies.

      Many of the marketers I’ve talked to are using several accounts, and they are using some to spread messages, and some to listen to what people have to say, and some to have interesting conversations.

      Do you use different accounts?

      • ahoova says:

        I do not use twitter for traditional “marketing” purposes. I use Twitter to engage with folks from all walks of life from all over the globe.

        By building my personal knowledge and engaging with thought leaders (known and unknown), I am expanding “my world”. But I do not connect with people with the thought in my mind that “later on… I will be able to ask them for a business favor”.

        • Jens says:

          That’s the reason why I have been thinking of using different Twitter accounts. I don’t do traditional marketing, and I never expect any favors, but I’m not sure if I could use one Twitter account to everything I’d like to do with Twitter.

          For instance, I have a lot of Norwegian friends and business “partners”, and all of them are writing in Norwegian. If I started to write many tweets in Norwegian, most of my followers wouldn’t understand a thing, and my Norwegian friends wouldn’t want me to communicate in English.

          And, I’m using some twitter lists to “listen” to people I don’t follow. That’s people I know that wouldn’t follow me, and this works great, but it means that I am using lists instead of using the timeline.

          And, I have many types of interests. To me it looks like it’s best to have one Twitter account for each interest. So @berget (the one I’m using now) is all about marketing and my business, and I might create one for everything related to vegetarianism and animal rights, and one for my Norwegian business etc..

  17. ahoova says:

    So I understand the need to have two accounts for the different languages but more than that, i fundamentally disagree.

    I use lists only to follow those that tweet way too often but that I want/need to keep track of. otherwise I follow them on Twitter and dont take it personally when someone doesnt follow me back.

    • Jens says:

      Are you using your timeline in Twitter? Many people are tweeting a lot, and for me, the timeline becomes cluttered very fast (I have tried it with different accounts, not just mine with a lot of followers).

  18. Alicia says:

    Jens, thank you for sharing. You made everything so easy. My twitter accounts is full of auto follows. I’m cleaning up my twitter account because following auto follows hurt my reputation. Thank you so much. This is one great holiday giveaway.

  19. faissal alhaithami says:

    I guess those tools are what i’m looking for, I use tweetadder, but i doesn’t give me the inactive followers from the active. On other word, they don’t separate the followers.

    So what is the best unfollow tool here? that gives us the inactive users.

    Thank you for the post 😀

  20. Ashvini says:

    Hi Jens,

    These apps are great. I was using twitter Karma previously but then I saw that there was not much development to that anymore. I cleaned out around 500 of non -active spam contacts whom I once followed.

    Really enjoyed reading your post .
    Thanks and wish you a very happy new year

  21. Miguel says:

    Hello, I have found this blog casually. I have to congratulate you for this good blog, these apps will help me a lot. Thanks for sharing it and try to continue on this way.

  22. Sam says:

    Unfollowing Twitter users is a type of tidying your Twitter account, a type of cleaning that should be used as often as possible. Following unuseful users is a waste of time, and makes your Twitter account to look spammy which is something that nobody would want for their Twitter accounts. If an account looks spammy, no one will want to follow that, that’s for sure, and that’s another important reason to make you want to clean up the unuseful follows.

    • Jens says:

      That’s a great point. I usually don’t look at the twitter profiles of people I follow, but some of my friends are cleaning up who they’re following all the time.

      I want to follow real people, people who are interested in a conversation and listen to what I have to say 🙂

  23. Eddie Gear says:

    Thanks for the mention of Tweepi Jens. I used to use this tool sometime back, and I completly forgot about it. Very helpful to Twitter fans.

  24. Jim says:

    Being selective about who you follow not only makes your own Twitter experience more pleasant and useful; it also benefits both your followers and those you follow by ensuring an environment where you’ll be more likely to engage with them and pay attention to their content, thus enhancing your Twitter karma. With this in mind, there are five types of Twitter users who I now refuse to follow.

    Great post! Thanks.

  25. Sonia says:

    What makes me unfollow someone on twitter is someone that only tweets about themselves or always pushing a product to sell. Twitter for me is sharing great posts, reading new content and connecting with new bloggers.

    When I see bloggers only tweet about themselves 24×7 I get annoyed because they miss out on all the content out there that they could introduce their readers too. If it’s all about a sale, you already lost me. I don’t unfollow too often, but I am selective about who I follow.

  26. alex says:

    really useful tools you got there. but wich one of them would u recommend? i need one fast so i don’t have time to test them all.
    pls reply asap


  27. Bhavesh Sondagar says:

    Hi Jens,
    Till date I was using only Friend or Follow to unfollow my twitter followers but you shared a long list for the same job.
    Thanks for sharing.

  28. charlestonvoice says:

    it won’t let me on all day!!

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