Ever wondered how much overlap there is between your social networks or contact groups?
I always find it amazing that when I hit the “find people to follow or find your friends on X” button and add my email address such a relatively small number of users comes up. Yet with fairly healthy numbers on each of the services I use, why is there so little overlap between the services?
Having received lots of “follows” on Twitter recently from friends on other networks, I started to examine how and why I use each service.
Here’s what I discovered (apart from the fact I need to pay a babysitter and get out more often and have a MASSIVE sort out to get all my contacts in one place at some point, perhaps when my daughter leaves home):
- I am currently active in several email or social network apps/services (such as FriendFeed, Delicious, Twitter, LinkedIn, Gmail, Flickr, Facebook, MySpace, Huddle, wordpress, Yammer, Photobucket, Google Reader, Technorati, Slideshare, MS outlook)
- Email aside, I began using many of these services in 2004/2005 – the oldest are MS Outlook, Photobucket and GMAIL and the newest is FriendFeed.
- When I compare the friends I have on each service, only approx. 15-20% are shared across social networks, the remainder is distinct to an individual network.
- Only approx. 40% of my social network friends are represented in my email contacts.
- The exception is FriendFeed that has no distinct friends – all are shared with other networks.
- Facebook has the highest amount of family and close personal friends.
- LinkedIn has the highest percentage of colleagues and ex-colleagues and the highest percentage of overlap with my email contact book.
- Twitter has the highest percentage of people I have never met IRL but feeds into the largest number of other apps (blog, email, IM, delicious for example)
- The order in which I tend to use to strike up meetings IRL are Facebook/Facebook messaging or Twitter/Twitter DM->Email ->IM-> RL -> Phone
- I use Twitter DM almost as often as email/phone to set up / confirm RL meetings nowadays (work related, not personal).
- Connecting with people you don’t know varies in both etiquette and ease. The easiest network to contact or connect with people on are Twitter, FriendFeed and blog networks. I find LinkedIn slightly less easy in terms of approaching people you don’t already know. For me the big no-no is Facebook in terms of approaching strangers you’d like to contact – I feel it is a personal network and I don’t accept invites there from people I don’t know and wouldn’t expect others to either.
- With IM,email and mobile numbers, my rule of thumb is if you put them on your blog, it is fine to use them…providing it is relevant.
- Very few of mky closest friends and family are on Twitter but the majority are on Facebook
- In terms of the monetary value/benefits outside of the community and conversation loveliness of these services:-
- I’ve found work via LinkedIn
- I’ve saved recruitment costs by using LinkedIn and twitter
- I’ve been approached for new business leads via Twitter
- I’ve had press coverage because of the blog
- As a remote worker, Huddle saves me money on conference /long distance calls as does IM
- Email is by far the biggest time (and therefore money) drain
How do you do social?