I read the old saying “variety is the spice of life” a couple of days ago and I had one of those “Aha!” moments.  Variety… that’s a big reason that social media (and Twitter in particular) is more popular than ever.  You can’t get bored – there is always great variety and plenty of info to read, research and absorb.

Are you making the most of the “spice” social media is offering you?  In looking at my computer, Tweetdeck and Hootsuite function as my spice racks of social media.  Actually, I need to re-vamp Tweetdeck as I set it up with just a few columns when I first started using it (middle of last summer, 2009).  Currently I have one column “Group Favorites” that I throw all the people into that I get great info from.  That column has become quite large and I realize that my narrow interest of “Group Favorites” is actually quite varied and I need to break out that group into a wider variety of categories.

I just took a look at the “real” spice rack in my kitchen.  I have nearly 50 spices in the rack (and I am not really much of a cook).  In taking a good hard look at all the spices, there are some I have no clue as to why they are sitting there.  Probably for some specialized recipe that I never made or was a bomb….

It looks like I need to clean out my spice rack – both in my kitchen and on my computer.  While I haven’t done anything in the kitchen yet, recently I started weeding out the people that I follow on Twitter that I’m not receiving great info from – either they are not in my “niche,”I don’t find their topic interesting  or they fell into the category “When you first start out on Twitter follow everyone who follows you.”  Since it really is quality vs. quantity, I’m making a break with those that are taking up valuable space in my spice rack.

Hootsuite is the program I am using to decide who stays and who goes.  I’m doing this in a slow, thorough manner – one by one as time permits.  Posts from people who I don’t immediately recognize I click on and look at those 3 top numbers that come up on the Hootsuite bio:


2.  Following

3.  Updates

It’s the number of updates that really gets me.  So many people have large numbers of followers yet have only posted a few updates.  That clinches it for me and off they go into the trash.  Harsh, but I’m looking for people who are going to spice things up, add something to their follower’s day and most likely these people, who have humongous followings with only a few updates, are in it only for themselves.

My tips for finding people to interact with via any type of social media are summed up in 3 ways:

1.  What is the poster offering the reader?

2.  Can I learn from and interact with the poster on an ongoing basis?

3.  Is this poster worthy of taking up space in my spice rack?

(Then if I’m on the fence about the person, I go to their Twitter site and read a page of their past posts and make my decision from the content there.)

How do you decide who you network with?  How often to you go through your spice rack and ditch what you don’t need?

Looking for more small business marketing tips?  I post a few tips each week on the Just a Small Town Girl Facebook page – hope to see you there too!  And please feel free to download my ebook The Small Town Marketing Handbook which discusses how social media allows each of us to be part of our own “small town” regardless of where we live.