Friday, July 13, 2012

Twitter Tips: The #FF Faux Pas

On Wednesday, I talked about some Facebook pet peeves. Today it's time for another little talk about Twitter.

If you're on Twitter, you're probably familiar with the #FF (Follow Friday) trend. The idea is that you use the hashtag to give a shout-out to someone you think other people should follow. Here's what a lot of the #FF tweets in my feed look like:

#FF @ThatOneGuy @TheOtherDude @ACoolChick @MyBFF @SuperAwesomeLady @BoyITweetedOnce

Um ... I have to confess. I've never once followed anyone who showed up in a list like that.

A slight improvement might look like this:

#FF some cool writers @WritesALot @WritesAndReads @AnotherAuthor @FictionaholicsAnonymous

At least I know they're writers, but ... I already follow a lot of cool writers. I get random writers following me because they found "writer" in my profile, and I already have to decide whether to follow them back. I'm not in the camp of trying to follow every writer on Twitter.

What would an effective #FF look like (in my opinion)? It'd take a little more effort and require spreading a little less love, but that love would be more apparently sincere. For example:

#FF @SaraMegibow for her #10queriesin10tweets every Thurs. Great stuff!

Or ...

#FF @bigblackcat97 for no-nonsense YA, rural-life hilarity, and general randomosity.

Like I said the last time I talked about Twitter, tweet like you mean it.

As a corollary, the "reply all" style thank-yous for #FF mentions. Here's my thinking. If I'm already mentioned in the #FF, I saw it. Why do I need to see that someone else in the list thanked the initial tweeter?

Of course, that leads to a bigger question: Is our goal in thanking someone to show gratitude, or to be seen to show gratitude?

And have I been guilty of all of the above at one time or another? Absolutely. But I'm going to try to do better.

What are your thoughts on #FF? Do you find them effective? How so? Please share your tips and tricks.

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