There’s no better way to start off the week than with an incredibly important question: how many followers do you have on your Twitter account? Any business that is running a social media and SEO campaign on this integral micro-blogging site knows just how important the number of followers it has is to developing its online presence.

Building the number of followers on Twitter, however, is far from a simple task. Unless, of course, you are a famous person, company, or institution, which most of us who use Twitter are not. You don’t have to already be famous, however, to build a big Twitter following. In the end, Twitter can serve as a great tool for increasing you or your company’s public presence in both the online and offline spheres.

So how do you go about gaining more followers? There are actually a variety of things which you must NOT do if you want to boost your numbers. Fortunately for all of us, Mashable recently posted an article listing eight characteristics that cause members of the Twitter community to not follow a particular account.

Here are the reasons for which a Twitter account may lack appeal and fail to attract followers.

1. No profile picture.
2. No biography explaining what the account is about.
3. “Polarizing” or controversial topics in the biography.
4. Tweets are protected and the account is private.
5. Too few or infrequent Tweeting.
6. Too much Tweeting, that is continuous and constant, and often on irrelevant and uninteresting topics.
7. Little to no engagement with other users…but a lot of broadcasting.
8. Sometimes a user is just not interested in an account… you know, just like people. It is social media, after all.

So there you have it: the things to avoid if you want to gain followers on a Twitter account. Two main tips that businesses must remember in building their Twitter accounts is that a) Twitter accounts must express the company’s identity, and b) they must continuously be engaging with other members of the Twitter community. Keeping these in mind will help make a company’s Twitter account meet social media success.