Keeping It Real: Responding Like A Human

Photo by Marcus Byrne on Unsplash

It’s growing more important to be different and engaging on social media, yet we have all received responses such as:

Thank you for following.

Thanks for the RT.

Unfortunately, it is not uncommon to receive a robotic response from a company that you know is made up of real people. Why aren’t they taking the time to be different?

One of the key reasons businesses are on social media is to develop a relationship and engage with their audience. If you respond to your audience using cliché, automated responses, what does that tell them? “The company doesn’t value me.” “Are they even reading what I say?”

Why not set up auto-responders?

1) Be different than the rest!

We have all heard the phrase “If he/she jumped off a bridge, would you?” Just because someone else is doing it doesn’t mean you should, too. There is value in being unique! Set a new trend in your industry of NOT using auto-responders.

2) You have real people working for you, not robots!

It is easy to set up an automated response, however, it takes time to respond with a customized response to each of your new followers, retweets, or mentions. Your customers will recognize their value to your company, which in turn, will help you to establish a lasting customer relationship.

3) Frankly, it’s annoying.

There is nothing worse than getting a notification that you have a new message only to find a “Thanks for following” response. You know they want followers and everyone who follows gets the same response.

What are some ways you can respond?


  • Use their @Names or tag them. There is no better way to be personal than by recognizing an individual follower. It shows your audience that you are present online and are aware of what’s happening on your social platforms. Plus, who doesn’t like to get a notification saying “So-and-So mentioned you.”
  • Change up the wording. You can be creative in your responses and you may like a particular response. However, your audience will notice if you are responding in the same way over and over again even if it is creative. Find synonyms for “thanks” and “appreciate” etc.
  • Ask questions. “Thanks for sharing! What did you think of the article?” “Which of the resources mentioned have you used?” The options are limitless. Find ways to further the discussion by asking questions and responding appropriately.
  •  Retweet something they have published. Reciprocate the favor! They enjoyed something you published enough to share it with their audience. Favorite the share and then share in return.
  • Follow back. Gained a new follower? Think they could be a potential customer? Value the information they publish? Follow them back. You don’t have to follow everyone back, especially those “gain followers” profiles that we have all come to recognize. You may even wish to say, “Thanks for following! Enjoy the content you publish and can’t wait to see more articles!”

These are just some of the ways you can take a different approach to responding to new followers, retweets, etc. Avoid using auto-responders and cliché responses. Show your followers that you care and value them.

What are some other robotic responses have you received on social media platforms that you would recommend readers avoid? Let us know!


About Jamie Teasdale

Jamie Teasdale founded Propel Businessworks, a small business development company, in 2009. Since then, she has been lending insight and creativity to businesses all over the U.S., giving them the tools they need to plan, promote, and prosper.