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HOW TO: Find New People on Twitter (feat. Guerilla TwitZapping)

23 July 2009

Feel alone in the Twitterverse?

I go about several different ways to find people on Twitter. Here is a short list. Some of them are more and others less helpful. Hit and run!

Flip the Channel - TwitZapping is finding people on Twitter Guerilla Style ©pcbritz

Flip the Channel - TwitZapping is finding people on Twitter Guerilla Style ©pc britz

Structural Approaches:

There are plenty of lists and directories out there where users can suggest themselves or others for others to follow. I have been recommended WeFollow by several people and found it useful. It allows for a search within a category.

Twibes are also a great way to find people. Twibes are ordered by subjects or interests and assigned 1-3 key terms or hashtags. The Twibe filters these and creates a feed of them. The people on Twibes will be somehow affiliated with the search term. Check out tweeting and retweetet people.

Snowballs – The Twitter Way

Thought leaders can be helpful in identifying new connections and interesting users. Most thought leaders in a field will follow a small selected amount of other users that inspire them. Most often they are in the same field. Use the snow ball system. Identify thought leaders and check out who your grand figures are following.

Trouble identifiying thought leaders? Hint: If you search a key term and find a series of RTs of the same person, you might be on the right track!

#Follow[placeanydayoftheweek], originally #Followfriday or #ff: People will show appreciation or share great users via follow friday. Maybe those users could be interesting to you, too? Combine with thought leaders and you’ll be very likely to find good people!

Guerilla Method: TwitZapping (My Personal Favorite)

Frustrated with all the structured approaches? Try TwitZapping (no, that word doesn’t exist yet, I just made it up!)

I grew up as a bored teenager with a remote in my hand… back then I trained my thumb for texting, plus I learned to appreciate randomness (“uuh, Bible TV” ZAP “wow, cool – city council meeting” – ZAP “Hm, documentary on New Zealand Birds? Alright”). I’ve carried some of that into Twitter.

I recently started flipping randomly through profiles (What I call TwitZapping). the rules: pick a person, hover your mouse over the people they follow, look to where the first tweet appears and click. Check out the profile without moving the mouse and click again – until you find a “channel” interesting to you or you run into Oprah.

TwitZapping might not be as effective, but it opens up profiles you would have otherwise never seen (like Oprah and Ashton Kutcher for me). It also gives you a feeling for the Twitterverse at large – beyond your usual buddies. Basically, it’s the luck of the draw, but sometimes you DO get lucky. It is how I found Rain N Wilson

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