How I Follow Twitter

Here’s my setup:

Screen Shot 2015-12-10 at 11.37.57 AM.png

I use the Tweetbot Mac app and have it configured to display two columns: one for mentions and one for tweets of folks in a private list of ~120 folks whose tweets I want to ensure I read.

I keep a list simply because I don’t have the time to read all of the tweets from the 1K+ people I follow. I keep it private simply because there’s no need for it to be public. I could unfollow folks so that I only follow the folks whose tweets I really want to read, but I’ve found keeping a list is simpler.

I’ve learned that my Twitter usage tends to follow a regular pattern: I follow a certain number of people and don’t have a problem reading all of their tweets, so I start to follow more people, get overwhelmed, then stop reading tweets all together. After a week or two I remove folks from the list so that it becomes manageable, start reading tweets again, then repeat the cycle.

After going through this several times, I’ve learned that for me it’s really important to limit the number of people I follow. If check Tweetbot and see that I have 500+ unread tweets, that’s typically when I stop following tweets entirely. With only ~120 people in the list and those folks typically producing a reasonable amount of tweets/retweets, I can usually miss a day or two and only have to catch up on 100-200 tweets which is usually no problem.

You’re probably on the list if we’ve ever chatted on Twitter, we’re friends at Automattic or in Orlando, or you’re a thought leader in the growth/startup/tech/science/AI space.

I wish I could follow more folks, but given the choice between following a limited amount and reading most of their tweets vs following a lot of folks and reading no tweets, I go with the first option. YMMV.

If you have any suggestions on how to improve this setup or have a workflow that works really well for you, I’d love to hear about it.

3 thoughts on “How I Follow Twitter

  1. This is pretty much how I do twitter as well. I follow 50 people in my private list at the moment. When I catch up I’ll pop over to everyone else and keep it pinned to the top. When I get behind I go back to the private list to see if I’ve missed anything.

    • I’ve experimented with having multiple lists similar to that. You’ll notice my private list is called “Primary” in the screenshot. I also have a list called “Secondary” though I found I never actually checked it so just removed it from Tweetbot.

      Those names are another reason why the names are private… “am I not important enough to be in Primary?!?” :)

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