Mugshots, blips, brightkites and a (get ready for the 10 cent word) plethora of other services have infiltrated the Twitter stream.
Frankly, they’re polluting the conversation and diluting the value of what Twitter could be – a place to discuss and gain insight into various topics.
This ideal is debatable, I know. It depends on whether you use Twitter as a resource center or a gossip column. Let me be clear, no one way is more correct than the other. However…
The more outside streams coming into Twitter, compounded with the number of people you follow, it gets pretty damn difficult to follow any type of conversation let alone actually develop relationships and learn from folks.
I suppose this post could very much lead to a discussion on broadcast marketing versus relationship marketing.
So, I have a question for those that follow 1000, 2000, 5000 people… how in the hell are you gaining value from that much noise? Seriously, I’d love to know.
On the flip side, what do you do to provide value to the folks who follow you?
Here’s the thing: Twitter (or any social network, for that matter) is about developing relationships. Can you really do this when following 1000+ people? How do you develop relationships when conversations pretty much amount to nothing more than “drive-by” remarks?
The smaller your “follow” list the more insight you gain into each person’s life, their likes/dis-likes, what they’re up to, etc.
So, if you’re looking to Twitter to be a source of education, valuable discussion, and profitable relationships then it would make sense to limit the number of people you follow.
Is this the solution?
For the past couple of weeks I’ve been relatively quiet on Twitter while I ponder both the value I receive from and provide to the stream.
I know some folks who limit the number of people they follow to between 50 and 100. This way they can engage in more meaningful conversations and get to know the other folks better.
Is a self-imposed limit the answer? I’d love to hear form you.