People have many different approaches to determine who they will follow and not follow on Twitter. A whole lot of folks won't follow anyone they don't know. Others sign up for spammy, follower-generating tools that permit them to amass tens of thousands of followers and followees (who couldn't give a darn what each other have to say). I know a guy who won't follow more than 140 followers at any one time.
My preference has been to follow just about anyone who follows me--this approach struck me as fair, open and social. There are drawbacks to "reciprocal following," such as that it makes my Twitter stream a relatively useless flow of wide-ranging tweets. On the plus side, it exposes me to more folks, and when I see one I find interesting and pertinent, I can choose to follow him or her more closely by adding the individual to lists in my preferred Twitter client, Hootsuite. Also, this practice permits people to Direct Message (DM) me, which I welcome until and unless a given Twitterer abuses the privilege by littering my DM "in box" with spam.
Marketers must follow the FTC’s CAN-SPAM guidelines as they apply to transactional messages; however, transactional emails are frequently embedded with promotional content. We’ve found that retailers can, on average, generate an additional $2.9 million annually by including promotions in their transactional communications. When content gets mixed in together, we often hear clients asking: where is the line drawn between promotional and transactional messages?
While there is no silver bullet for determining the difference between each message type, there are some guidelines that can help you determine whether or not the message will be subject to the CAN-SPAM Act. The FTC places a great deal of weight on the subject line of a message, so if the subject line would lead the recipient to think it’s a transactional message, it’s a transactional message for CAN-SPAM purposes. Additionally, the content of the message matters. If the majority of the message is commercial, or the bulk of the transactional part of the message doesn’t appear at the beginning of the message, CAN-SPAM considers the message a commercial one.
Regardless of message type, there are a few best practices to keep in mind to comply with CAN-SPAM (and maintain a good sender reputation).