Many people use the Twitter service to meet other interesting people, both with similar likes or just to hear what others have to say.  This method of online socialization has become quite commonplace in the online world.

I myself started using twitter after being introduced to it at Small Business Marketing Unleashed by Jennifer Laycock.  I found it to be quite entertaining and an interesting way to keep up with some of the people I met.  I then started to realize the value of searching out like-minded people and watching what they had to say.  I have really gathered some insight that I’m not sure would have been possible otherwise and have both learned and shared ideas on personal and business levels.

However, after following almost 400 people, which for some is but a fraction of the people they are listening to, I had discovered that for the small amount of time I could dedicate to Twitter, this was more information than I knew what to do with.

So I set out on a mission, to reduce the number of people I’ve followed down to the people I found myself communicating with most often and those that communicated with me.  And now a couple of months later something interesting has dawned on me.  The majority of people I am following are actually more often using the service to drive traffic back to their personal sites.  This wasn’t the case when I was following 400 people.

Now I’m not saying that Twitter lacks usefulness in my application, however I could probably accomplish the same goals with a newsreader.  So my thought is this, be involved in Twitter for its conversational use or just to share your random ideas, perhaps even just a crazy thought. 

As for me, I plan to begin to follow more people again and try to use the service for what I believe was its original intention.  A small note however, I do believe that people posting links on Twitter have provided a valuable service in many cases and should continue.  I would not have learned of many of these people without it.  Thank you to all of you that contribute.

August 2, 2008

Craig is the principal owner and managing Member of and BrightWeb Marketing.


Great point! I too see a lot of people i follow only posting when they have new posts- When this happens I usually wait- make sure this is the only thing that they are tweeting about, and then "unfollow" them. My RSS reader is my newsreader. Twitter is something different.

Not everyone that I follow or that follows me reads my blog regularly and many of them probably don't have it in their newsreader. However, if I post something that I think might be of more general interest than my average post, I might tweet about it. But I do think it should be the exception, rather than the rule.

The biggest problem I have with Twitter is the amount of outright drivel you have to plow through to find something worth reading.

My goal is to meet writers with the goal of bringing the good ones into our "stable" of authors (we publish eBooks, but only well-written stuff). Unfortunately, as one fellow put it, "writers write". And they'll often write about anything in an unconscious effort to avoid working on their bread and butter issues. I swear that many of them live on Twitter during their waking hours, just to avoid dealing with writer's block. As a result posts often feature such pearls as "Fixing myself a sandwich".

Now, I'm only following around 30 people. If I log into Twitter once a day, I have to wade through several pages of this purple prose to extract one or two nuggets.

How does anyone keep up with 200 people? I see a lot of folks who follow hundreds of people. They can't be reading ALL of that trash. So, why do they do it? Their own "broadcasts" will probably be buried in as many posts as they have to wade through themselves.

Thank you for all of your thoughts, I apologize for the delay in getting back to you.

I do follow over 200 people, but follow is a very general term. There are several people on twitter I pay close attention too, and others that I only see what they have to say when I happen to be on. My visits to twitter have been very infrequent. As a Small Business owner, I have a difficult time finding time to chat with everyone, but i love to see a few who I consider Tweet Friends around when I happen to get some time.

It can be difficult though, it is still very "clicky", and can be tough to communicate in any conversational mode with people following more than 50 users who only see you once in a blue moon. But thats just the nature of the game. Like anything in life, you get back what you put into it, no more no less. so it is all about your intent.

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