Twitter has recently become a popularity contest for some users, as celebrities like Ellen DeGeneres have openly campaigned and begged for followers. However, others users are willing to pay (a lot of money) for the additional following, like Jason Calacanis, founder of Mahalo. He has offered Twitter $250,000 to include him on their list of 100 suggested people to follow, which every new user sees. The list offers new Tweeters a wide range of people and companies/organizations to follow, including Google, The New York Times, John Mayer and Kevin Rose.
Calacanis went on to tell TechCrunch that he believes the the top 20 recommended slots will be worth $1 million a year (like a Super Bowl commercial) by 2014.
So how much attention and/or traffic does Twitter bring? TechCrunch published a chart showing how much of their Web traffic came from Twitter over the past 14 months.
While TechCrunch appreciates all of their followers, they did say that not all followers are equal:
My suspicion is that most of the new followers aren’t hard core TechCrunch fanatics and wouldn’t be as valuable as the follower that we “earned” prior to being added to the suggested list. So far the data is confirming this.
So while it can be good to have a lot of followers, it’s much more important to have the right followers.