The people at Google may not know who you are in real life, but they certainly know and care if you have social authority. High social authority means you have the power to get lots of Twitter followers to hang on to your every Tweet, ready to reload and Retweet. In Twiterholic rankings, Lady Gaga, Ellen, Oprah and Justin Bieber, not necessarily in that order, have high social authority. Such social authority is useful in ranking web content. Link to an article and the more that it’s Retweeted the higher ranking it receives from Google and others. Of course there are possibilities for gaming the system by setting up lots of accounts with each following and Retweeting each other. But chances are Google is on to that because they are actively seeking out “spammers.” Whether they actively find them is an entirely different matter. In the world of marketing, savvy businesses are interested in harnessing the power of social authority for generating publicity about products and services through Tweets. As anyone with some experience might guess, you get more social authority from a high number of people Retweeting your message than from fewer people engaging in mass Retweets. Older content being sent out over a longer period of time indicates that the subject has legs, so to speak. You don’t have to be born with social authority, you can achieve it or have it thrust upon you based upon the social authority of your followers. As usual it comes back to being not so much about whom you follow, but about who follows you.