Tidy up your Twitter Followers

I recently went through my library’s Twitter followers and “cleaned up” our follower list. What was I looking for? Mainly, that we are following people living in our service area. Here’s what I did:

First off, I used FriendorFollow. It’s a pretty handy tool that shows, among other things, who follows you, who doesn’t follow back, etc.

Then, I went through our list of Twitter followers, one at a time, and friended these types of a accounts:

  • Do they live in Topeka or Shawnee County?
  • Do they seem to live in Kansas, and do we share some Twitter friends (another indicator that they are in our service area)?
  • If they mention Topeka or Kansas in their bio or recent tweets
  • regional businesses (probably have employees in our service area)

If they met these criteria, I friended them back.

I unfriended some accounts, too. Here’s what I unfriended:

  • If they haven’t tweeted in over a year – that indicates they don’t actively use the account
  • If they never tweeted
  • If their account is private
  • If they don’t live in our service area

So – I ended up unfriending some libraries, some librarians, some people who had moved out of the area, and some celebrities that we had friended. Not in our service are? We dump em.

What did that achieve? Hopefully, more interaction. More followers that might actually be interested in their local library and what we tweet. And several hundred more followers that we are connected to!

That’s what I did – do you ever clean up follower lists in your organization’s Twitter or Facebook accounts? If so, what do YOU look for? Please share!

Image from Michael Sauers

Attracting Friends, Part 2: Twitter

In my last post, Attracting Friends, Part 1, I discussed how to attract friends for your library social networks generally … by doing the hard work. Now on to the specific tools – how do you find and attract friends, as an organization, using Twitter? Here are some ideas:

  • use local services like TwitterLocal or TwitterMap [dead now – removed the link] to discover local twitter users, and subscribe to their feed. Say hi. Interact with them. They won’t friend you if they don’t know you’re there.
  • put a Twitter chicklet on your site. You can use a chicklet that does a specific thing, like TwitterCounter (shows the number of people following you – I have an example on my site), or a generic chicklet/graphic link that simply announces that you use twitter. Go one better, and say “follow me on Twitter” in your link/chicklet. This announces that you’re looking for followers.
  • Does your organization have accounts set up in other social networks, like Facebook, flickr, or YouTube? Mention your Twitter account on those other profile pages.
  • Do local media/businesses use twitter? Connect with them. For example, in Topeka, my twitter friends include some tv news anchors and the general manager of a local news station. Connect with them, and start talking. Others that have connected with them will notice, and maybe follow you.

What am I missing? Please share!

Update: This is part of my slowly-growing series on organization-based friending in social networks. Here’s what I have so far: