Sara Reiner | Contributor
January 07, 2013

Cleaning out your Social Media Clutter in the New Year


While many of our New Year’s resolutions center around things like losing weight or finally organizing the garage - think about starting the New Year by cleaning out your digital clutter.

When it comes to social media, we create our own experience to a certain extent. We choose who we want to follow or add to our network and how we connect.  However, after years of adding acquaintances, old co-workers or potential business contacts, we may find our contact lists become bloated.

If you find yourself glossing over the latest updates on your newsfeed or dashboard, you can always delete friends, block users, hide their posts or unsubscribe.

But clearing social media clutter doesn’t have to be that drastic or permanent. You might want to consider these methods first:

Twitter: Of course everyone uses Twitter differently.  Some use it to connect to friends and family, while others use it as a source of news and information or a combination of the two.  Take a look at your followers and think about the purpose of following certain people or companies.  Have you found your newsfeed to be overwhelming?  Do you have to weed through a lot of fluff to find the gems?  Become friends with the “unfollow” button.  If you sign up for apps to help manage your Twitter feed, make lists so you can separate personal from the professional.  As you purge your news feed keep in mind the reason why you originally joined the network and that your current participation in the space continues makes sense for you.

Facebook: With Facebook as with all social media, you connect to different people for different reasons.  Does the sheer volume of your Facebook feed make it impossible to stay connected to the people that really matter to you? You can use Facebook Lists to help control the type of updates you receive.  Creating lists like “Family”, “Friends”, “Work” and will allow you to review updates from these specific groups of contacts with greater ease and efficiency.

LinkedIn:  Take a look at the groups you belong to on LinkedIn and ask yourself, “how valuable is this group to me professionally.”  Are their email updates helpful? Does the group itself add value to your experience?  If not, don’t be afraid to leave a group. With so many users, you are bound to find a more relevant group to participate in.

Update your privacy settings:  Regardless of which social network you spend the most time on, make sure you continually review their privacy options as well as your own current settings. Not only can privacy settings help you control your digital footprint, they can keep you organized as well.

When it comes to social media don’t forget you are in complete control. With just a little time and energy, you can simplify your online life in the New Year.