In Networking, Social Media

I had a Twitter volley with Mack Collier after he wrote a blog post titled “I am officially a social media packrat.”  Mack’s post pointed out his discovery of 3000 (out of 16,000) people he follows were NOT following him back. Ouch. @KristenHeptin suggested we use twunfollow but that she sometimes “gets sad.”

FIRST: Don’t get sad Kristen.  I wrote this blog post just so you won’t pine in your heart for all of those lost potential relationships. Read on.

SECOND: If you’re challenged by Twitter follower/following management and are willing to pony up a bit of moolah to solve the problem (and save a boatload of time – for $20/month), or are like Mack and hate having to check to see who’s dumped you, then this post is for you too. come to the rescue!!

I’ve been using since it came out back in mid-2009. … and NO, I’m not related, an affiliate or being compensated in any way for this post.  I just like the service.  It has, however, since then turned into a paid service (much to my chagrin.)  But, it’s the only paid service I recommend to my clients … for good reason.

Here’s what ReFollow does for me:

  • Allows me to identify highly engaged people. Here are some of the filters I apply:
    • The person must have a picture.  I figure if they haven’t taken the time to post a mugshot, they can’t be all that serious.
    • Whether they’ve tweeted in the past 30 days.  Again, it’s a measure of how serious they are on Twitter.  Daily tweets are good but if you haven’t tweeted anything in a month, you’re probably not that serious.
  • Allows me to follow people who will be willing to reciprocate. A high “Friend” count is a sign that they’re looking to have two-way conversations.
  • Allows me to focus. Again with the filters:
    • If a person has the phrase “social media” in their bio, there’s a great possibility we’ll have something to talk about.  I can filter by name, bio, tweets, tags, location or website.
    • If a person has the phrase “make you money” or “MLM” in their bio, I’m not likely going to be interested.
  • Allows me to be social-media-polite. If I’ve followed somebody and they don’t follow me back for ANY reason, I want to be respectful (after I’ve unfollowed them) by not following them back, over and over again.
  • Allows me to expand my network intelligently. If I were to take a look at Mack’s entire following list (which would be good, because we’re playing in the same sandbox) and apply some of the above filters, what I’d find is a LOT of people who I haven’t reached out to yet.  The ratio would be something like 19 out of 20 people are right in my wheelhouse.  I follow them and about 6 or 7 of them will follow back within a week-ish.
  • And a whole lot more!

Soooo, here’s my commentary on being a social media packrat.  I don’t sweat it.  Mack said he’s going to be VERY selective with his Google+ account as a comparative social media experiment.  I do the same thing with my Facebook account (presently … but I may change) Liken this approach to an intimate dinner party with your closest of friends.  With that metaphor in mind, think of Twitter as a stadium sized rave that is 2/3 or 3/4 comprised of people in your industry and you’ve got a big bullhorn in hand. Yes, they’re completely different!

So, Kristen, don’t be sad about the hundreds or thousands of people coming and going to the stadium rave.  Just join in the party and have a great time!  In the process of doing that, you’ll connect with some really great people that you can invite over to your backyard summer bashes (another metaphor) and the people you REALLY connect with get invited over to your dinner parties.

For some reason, I’m feeling the need for a burger and a beer!

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