Someone recently asked me how I choose my followers on Twitter. When I offer an opinion on how I use Twitter, keep in mind that I don’t represent a hospital, business or Fortune 500 brand. What you do as a marketing professional on Twitter may be very different from what I do as a free-range physician.
1) People who bring me information I can use. Twitter has evolved as my human signal. If something’s important my stream will let me know about it. I try to keep it pure. I avoid noisy folk.
2) People with whom I have some kind of meaningful relationship. I’ll follow and connect with my closest contacts if they take to Twitter. Even here, however, I’m selective.
When I think of Twitter I think inbound rather than outbound. I put almost all of my attention on who I follow and very little attention on who follows me. I do more listening than talking. We need more of that.
Is that selfish? Not at all. It’s how I use the tool. I do share and create but its disproportionate to what I consume. With regard to my outbound stuff, I like to think that I create value by sharing links that are remarkably good. Socially I think more horizontal than my peers in social health. So I often pull in content from other silos in the infosphere. I offer dry, sarcastic humor if I’m in a mood.
I find the reciprocal follow to be nonsense. When I follow someone I want their content; there’s no expectation that they have to be interested in me.
As I evolve, how I communicate evolves. So this is all subject to change.