Observing other users along with their habits or the habits of related cohorts can be extremely educational in growing our fan base. One of the great things about Twitter is transparency- you can see everything everyone is saying. This makes competitive research super accessible. Your competitors have networks that likely include influencers who are directly related to the industry. Eavesdropping on Twitter conversations surrounding pertinent topics will help to ensure you are staying on top of what your audience is saying and interacting with.
Identifying influencers that are already following us is useful as well. Followerwonk is a platform which ranks users’ social authority based on the retweet rate of their last few hundred tweets, the recentness of those tweets, and a retweet-based model trained on user profile data. This number is by no means perfect, but retweets are so strongly correlated with a healthy community that they are a great way to identify relationships that should be pursued.