Be friendly but detached
But you really want to maintain a bit of detachment while doing this. If you don't, you could easily end up feeling hurt and upset. That's unpleasant in itself, but it could also result in you doing things that negatively impact your reputation.
And I'm not just talking about avoiding romantic infatuations, or stalker-like obsessions with celebrities you've been conversing with on Twitter -- needless to say such pitfalls are to be avoided like the plague! I mean that you should be careful of taking the actions of those with whom you've built a friendly rapport too personally.
For example, occasionally people you've been happily engaging with for a while end up unfollowing you. It can be quite a shock when you discover this. But rather than being angry with them -- or wondering what you yourself have done to deserve this -- you should take a step back and look at the big picture.
It may be that they don't even know they've done this -- particularly if they're very popular and active on the site. If you're following heaps of people you'll probably decide to do a follower "cull" from time to time. If you do, it's quite easy to simply not recall the interactions you've had with some of those you ultimately decide to unfollow.
Also, while executing such a cull, some users may well know who you are and still decide to call it a day. While they have appreciated their contact with you, they may have simply decided to drastically scale back to a small "A-list" of followers they rate above all others. In such a scenario they probably regret doing this but just decide to bite the bullet anyway. They can't send out apologies to everyone individually. That would take too much time.
Another thing that can be upsetting is when people who usually respond to your questions and comments stop doing so. Again, it's unlikely that this is due to them not valuing their connection with you. It's probably because they are just flat out.
I have several blogs running, along with Facebook pages and Twitter accounts for them all. I try to respond to, or at least acknowledge, all comments and questions that they attract. But there's only so much time in the day! And compared to many bloggers, I have small readerships. The big dogs must be responding to just a tiny fraction of interactions.
Just as you shouldn't be put out if you don't always get feedback, don't beat yourself up if you can't supply it when asked. You can only do so much, and most readers understand that -- or at least come to know it in time.
Don't feed the trolls
You might also attract one or more trolls. This is highly unusual in a niche like the one this blog's in. But in a more emotive field of interest such as politics, it happens a lot. Actually, in this genre it would be unusual if you didn't have a few trolls after a while.
Whatever happens, just don't let them get to you. The expression "don't feed the trolls" is well worth remembering. Your outrage is like oxygen to them. So the best policy is to not respond to them at all. But if you really have to, fire back defiantly and assertively, making sure to convey a position of emotional strength. If that's not enough to stop the harassment then block and report them.
Whatever you do, try not to respond with the same level of vile personal abuse that they hurl at you. You could end up regretting this -- and not just because they've brought you down to their level. If they're really vicious, and some are, they could report you for abusing them! Now that Twitter is trying to make itself a warmer, friendlier place this is definitely something to be mindful of.