It started out innocently enough. I was starting to look into social media channels for work, and Twitter was one of them. I set up a profile, found a few people I knew and followed them and posted a few tweets and that was it.
I checked my feed every couple weeks, but since I wasn’t following many people, not much was going on. Then I found a few more people to follow, talked to a couple of them, and they responded. It was pretty cool! But I still had everything under control.
Pretty soon I installed a little Twitter app on my desktop so I could check on what was going on easily. Retweeting was pretty quick and easy. I found more people to follow, and more people started following me. And then it wasn’t long before I was checking Twitter first thing in the morning and on the bus ride to work, just to make sure I didn’t miss anything important. Now I tweet on the weekends, in the evening and even in the car. Even though some people think Twitter is just a random mess of people publishing their every little move, including pics of what they ate for breakfast, I just can’t stay away. I think I have a problem.
But seriously, I have come to rely on Twitter as more than just my daily dose of anonymous gossip. In addition to giving me an effective way to connect with others who share my interests, it has become my RSS feed. I figure why scour the blogs myself, when there already many others doing just that and posting the good stuff. So I just follow them, and stay up to date on all the latest news in social media.
At first I had trouble deciding who I wanted to follow, but I have since come up with a bit of a system, and I try to follow 2 or 3 more people every day. Here’s how I do it:
- If I know you personally and you’re on Twitter, I’m probably going to follow you, just because.
- Periodically I go to my list of followers to see who’s new. I look at their profile and look at their bio. In some cases, it’s pretty obvious that it is just a spam account (they follow a couple thousand people, several hundred follow them and they have no tweets). In others, it looks like they might have some similar interests, so I look at their last few posts. If their posts look interesting, and it looks like they have conversations with people rather than simply advertising, I’ll likely follow them. If they just broadcast but I’m interested in most of what they broadcast, I might just follow them anyways.
- I look up hashtags that I’m interested in (such as #socialmedia or #digitalmarketing) and check out people who post using them, using the same process I described above.
Bottom line is, if you’re talking about stuff I’m interested in, and it seems like you engage in actual conversation on Twitter, I’m more likely to follow you. And if you’ve hit my blog and think I should be following you, feel free to leave a comment with your handle so I can check you out!
– Nancy -