Monday, December 19, 2011

Doing more & spending less time at social media: Cleanup time

You wouldn't be my first client to say "I want to spend less time on social media but post more frequently," as one participant in my upcoming lunch-and-learn on 2012 social media resolutions has done. And as frequently as I post, I can only say "Me, too."

So before I turn the page on 2011, I've started my now-annual "cleanup" of my social media habits, especially my reading list--the source of my content stash for blog posts--and how I handle incoming tweets, messages and emails, all of which bring me opportunities along with the time suck. Here's what I'm doing this week, in no particular order, in case it's helpful to you, too:
  • Deleting blogs I don't want to follow any more: I manage my reading via Google Reader, and subscribe widely to RSS feeds that interest me. This week, I'm deleting subscriptions to blogs that 1) post too little, so much so that I can no longer remember what they're about; 2) post several times a day, but are only rarely useful to me, since someone will alert me to the posts I want to see; and 3) my wishful-thinking-reading, as in blogs I was hoping would be useful but have not proven so. At the same time, I'm eliminating any duplicate feeds that probably wound up there when I subscribed to someone else's list, package or set of feeds.
  • Converting my email newsletter/deal subscriptions to Evernote: Like many of you, I subscribe to email newsletters and deal offers that come via email. In an effort to get my email inbox even more under control, I'm taking the time to change my subscriptions so they go straight to Evernote, which gives me a special email address for this purpose. That will let me take one 10-minute stint a day to review and clear those emails, without cluttering up my email inbox.
  • Subscribing to the Twitter feeds of people whose tweets I don't want to miss: For every underproducing blog I'm deleting above, there are people whom I follow that I consider can't-miss reads. I'm not on Twitter all day, every day, so I subscribe to the RSS feeds of the people I consider essential. That puts their tweets into my Google Reader stream, so all my reads are in one place. Unfortunately, Twitter has made this more difficult to do by removing the RSS feed link from user pages, but you may be able to create a workaround with ifttt.
  • Making the most of my current automations, which combine Evernote, ifttt, Google Reader and other tools to make sure that I capture what I need to keep my blogging content stash full and up-to-date--without me having to do much at all. As it should be.
Next, I'm going to come up with some more automations that ifttt can help me accomplish. If I had to choose one tool--oh, don't make me--ifttt would be right up there, along with the new integration of Google+ into Blogger. Both have made my prolific blogging easier than ever.

What are you doing to fine-tune and clean up your social media reading lists? Leave word in the comments...

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