We’ve been slicing and dicing the stats on social media at Bare PR. Taking a closer look at Twitter and how it influences local debate. And Croydon’s leading role in London Tech week gave us the perfect opportunity to get stuck in. Our work shines some interesting light on the movers and shakers shaping conversation online.

There’s a common misconception that the more Twitter followers there are the greater the influence. But that is a long way from the truth. In fact what it takes to make waves on the Twittersphere is a little more complicated than vanity.

Social influence is driven by a number of factors, and high on that list is authenticity. We connect with people who are real, honest, human and true. People who are the same offline as they are online. Top influencers also create content that people want to share. As a result their opinions are valued, amplified and mimicked. So they’re leading the conversation with their peers, and in their community, and their tweets have a strong share value. The vast majority of content on Twitter are retweets not original posts. So this is essential.

The other key factor is relevance. Smaller online communities have major clout and are becoming more popular. For example boutique brands or niche services. Followers are united by a strong sense of shared values and trust. It’s not about the numbers it’s about the exclusivity. You’ll get far better Return On Investment (ROI) with this audience than talking to a larger mass who are the wrong target audience.

We used tips and tricks from the trade to drill down into what really makes a top tweep. These included key measurements such as exposure, reach, clout, influencer scores and the use of relevant hashtags.

Here are our top Croydon Tweeters:

@JamieAudsley – Labour Councillor for Bensham Manor, Croydon and community organiser
@samanthajbooth Reporter at Croydon Advertiser
@Russellcurtis Croydon Council’s Place Review Panel and Director of RCKa architects
@98rosjon Co-founder of Croydon Tech City
@LabourSJ MP for Croydon Central
@NigelD27 Co-founder of Croydon TechCity https://twitter.com/croydontechcity
@emmahopefitch Play street supporter and active member of the community
@SarahRecruiter Founder Tech London Advocates Woman in Tech

Is there anyone you think we’ve missed?