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Automatic Direct Messages or Not?

Written by Jill Manty  · October 21, 2010

Have you noticed that sometimes when you follow someone on Twitter, you get a direct message back? As you may know, a lot of those are automatically generated. As with many things in the social media world, there are diverse opinions on this practice.

Some say that you should definitely use an automatically generated “thanks for following message” but that you need to be careful about exactly how you write the message. Others claim that this is one step away from spam. Personally, I’m not sure.

On the one hand, when I receive those direct messages, they don’t really bother me (except the ones that overtly try to recruit me to follow them on Facebook or buy their product). On the other hand, I pretty much ignore them. They don’t make me feel warm and fuzzy or acknowledged or anything. I just think, “oh look, an automatically generated direct message”.

At this point, I don’t use a direct response message. But I wonder whether I should. What do you think? Are you bothered by automatic dm messages? Impressed by them? Would you rather get an automatic response than no response at all? I’d like to hear your opinions below.

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6 Responses to “Automatic Direct Messages or Not?”

  1. Sherry on October 21st, 2010 7:14 pm

    I’m not too interested in the auto-generated DM. Whenever I see it, I’m much more inclined to unfollow. I figure I’ll never get any real connection with those people. I’ve answered a couple of times when it looked like they are offering to interact and so far, I’ve never gotten an answer. I’d much rather have someone answer a comment or retweet something.

    If you understand Twitter, you know that you won’t always get a response; messages just get lost in the stream. I don’t think it’s polite to auto DM, it’s usually an indicator of someone selling and that’s all they care about.

  2. Jill Manty on October 22nd, 2010 1:35 pm

    That’s how I tend to see it, as well. However, there are some well known Twitter teachers who highly recommend using them. So, I’m just wondering what the “man on the street” take on it is.

  3. Trent Brownrigg on November 2nd, 2010 5:39 pm

    I don’t like them at all. They actually make me more annoyed with the person.

  4. John H on November 8th, 2010 6:54 pm

    Well after reading a lot about this topic I feel like it is more beneficial to do the reply pending what niche you are in. I think if they are aware of this auto message then you should not. But if you think they are not aware like in the traveling world which I believe more people would not be then auto messages are better. Does anyone agree with me?

  5. Eve on February 1st, 2011 10:54 am

    I hate that! It is so impersonal and seems spammy. I would consider unfollowing just for that.

  6. Tenisd on May 31st, 2011 5:03 am

    Why would One follow the user on the first place, if he unfollows the same person he wanted to follow for that reasone alone? ūüėÄ lol.