Follow Me, Maybe?
Although Twitter is an amazing place for conversation, let’s be honest – following along with 600+ of your closest *friends* can be daunting. So, how do you do it? There’s two ways: 1.) set up lists to follow specific individuals or as I prefer, 2.) selective following.
There’s nothing scientific about the latter. It’s nothing more than plain, old decision making. As @Ginaschreck so eloquently stated, “Deciding who to follow back on Twitter is like choosing kickball teammates. ‘Im sorry I’m not picking you–you look creepy’”.
When I first created @NicTheEditor, I still had a personal, and private, Twitter account. Managing two pages wasn’t as cumbersome as it was hypocritical. I started thinking: Why do I really have a locked page? If I can’t say it in public, do I really need to say it behind a locked account, which can still be shared with the world? Additionally, my personal page followed a ton of wonderful people who tweeted a lot. About nothing. All day.
More importantly, I asked myself why I created NicTheEditor in the first place. It wasn’t for giggles and socializing, it was for networking and building relationships, something that wasn’t happening on my personal account. So one day, while sitting in church, I made the decision to delete my private page. Cold turkey. I went straight home, typed a very brief “Goodbye” tweet and deleted the account. Immediately, it felt like a load had been lifted.
As of right now, I follow 861 people on Twitter and with the exception of breaking news/major events etc., my timeline is relatively clutter free. I still follow a handful of people from my old account, they’re just too cool to shake. Plus they break up the monotony of news tweets. So how do I choose? Two factors:
- Follow like-minded people. Follow people who do the things you aspire to do. If you are vegan, following someone who likes deep-sea fishing may not be the best option. Unless you’re totally fine with butting heads, let that fish swim. No pun intended.
- Do a timeline check. Before I follow someone, I always do a scroll-through of their tweets. Do they tweet too much? Do they only tweet links (spam indicator)? Do they value quantity over quality? These things matter.
Twitter as a whole can be overwhelming. Everyone has an opinion, everyone is trying to be heard. I like to think of it as a high school cafeteria: the cool kids, the nerds, the jocks, the band geeks and the socially awkward. I fall somewhere in between cool and socially awkward, closer to the awkwardness. Always have. But the thing that differentiates Twitter from high school? You get to choose the energy you bring into your space. Choose wisely, my friends.