Not followers, but follows. The people who you are meant to be interested in.
I find myself more and more these days getting lost in Twitter trails of people I follow (a measly 361 at the time of writing), wishing I could stop, but pressing on in case I miss something. I got the junk food addiction.
So what’s the proper Twetiquette (sorry!) for ensuring you can have a life away from Twitter? ….
I use Tweetdeck to keep everyone separated into about 8 columns and even then 405 follows is a bit many for me. But our mutual friend Mr. Whatley is a champ and tells me he is able to keep track of his 1500+.
If I didn’t know James, I would be suspicious. But in all honesty, I really think it depends on the person and why one uses Twitter. Overall, unless Twitter is your full time job, I can’t believe folks are able to really follow and pay attention to more than 600 or so people.
Though on the other hand, I think it really depends on how much the folks that you follow Tweet. If they are once a day or once every few day tweeters, then bring on the 1000. But if they are chatty, then no.
I won’t follow back anyone who has more than 1000 people they follow unless I know them in real life, as I wonder what their motives are. Twitter has been my main social media space for the last three years and I want my twitter stream to be quality and want to be able to learn from folks and have good conversation.
Most of all, I try to only follow the folks I know in real life, folks are have interesting twitter streams, and folks who are blogging & tweeting in web and mobile design / development / ideation spaces. Here is the quandry though, I follow very few folks who don’t follow me (less than 15, most of them industry folk who don’t know me), yet I have 3 times more people following me than I follow back.
In terms of how do I choose if I will follow someone? I will read their twitter stream for content and then go read their blog / website link, if they are good, then I give them a whirl for a week or so. This has been cool because I have met some interesting folks this way and now read some good new blogs.
Who I won’t follow back even if they look interesting: Folks with no legitimate blog or website link and/or folks whose whole twitter stream is just links. And if there are no tweets and no website link, then why did you do want me to follow you?
Hey, look! I am writing a Novella.
Last but not least is a trend that has started amongst a few of my web designer friends, which is the more popular they are the more than pare down who they follow.
I have been on Twitter now for 3 years and 2 months, or just over 9k worth of tweets. In the “Twitter Job Description by Date Joined” chart I am somewhere between a ‘Web Developer’ and a ‘Futurist’, which may or may not be a good analogy for my real life as a web/mobile developer and creative idea person.
All of my comment novella on Tom’s blog or not, I am still bewildered by the folks who both follow and are followed by tens of thousands as are they able to follow that many or is it a warped popularity contest. I am also bewildered by the folks who ask you to follow them and they have not tweeted at all, they provide no bio and no website link – how am I to know if I want to follow you if you have no tweets and no website link?
To conclude, Twitter is my main social media network that I prefer/love to participate in and I do want to make an effort to keep the stream of tweets that I write to be quality & occasionally humorous and to follow folks who are also producing/writing quality tweets.