According to Twitter, 150 million people generate 1000 tweets (a 140-character message) per second. That’s a lot of short messages – but where’s the benefit to you or your business?
I’ve been recently experimenting with social media, and there’s a lot of people who follow thousands of people (get their tweets) and likewise large numbers of people who have thousands (or millions) of followers. Because of the volume of messages, information is seldom read, or if it is read, seldom retained. Oftentimes, the message is retweeted (resent) to others. As I always advise my clients, focus on the ROI (return of investment) of your efforts. If you’re trying to disseminate information – measure not how many people follow you, but how many people act on your message. Likewise, measure how much benefit you gain from following others, reading their messages, and retweeting. If you don’t know the ROI, stop and develop a plan to measure it. Otherwise, you’re developing an activity that can gobble up your free time by giving you a sense of had done something significant.
Our culture tends to not value not-doing. If you’re not checking your email, Facebook friends, Twitter feed, blog, etc. you’re not “keeping up with the latest information”. We tend to forget that networking with others can spark great ideas, but the ideas need time to ferment in our minds to create “aha” moments. If you value creativity, take time away from the electronic “twitch” to check your messages, and give yourself the gift of quiet time to allow your mind to create amazing insights.
A related great article: Peter Bregman’s recent article, Why I Returned My iPad.