I joined Friendfeed, now what? -UPDATED

You took the plunge and signed up for a Friendfeed account. Welcome. But now you’re thinking, um ok… now what?

Here is a quick start guide to Friendfeed to ease your immigration into this new world.

Find Yourself

It is vital to take a few moments to fill out your profile and import your services into Friendfeed. This not only initializes your personal stream but by adding a picture and a short description or bio you will greatly increase the likelihood that people will follow you back. Just click the “settings” link under you username on the homepage (top right-hand side bar). After you add a picture and short bio go ahead an import your content. (Blog, Twitter, Facebook, whatever, Friendfeed supports 58 services and custom RSS so import however much you want to share). Once your user profile is filled out and your content is imported it’s time to build your Friendfeed community.

Find your Friends

Since social networks only work when you connect with other people the next order of business is to begin building your friend list. Friendfeed provides a simple process for finding your existing friends from Facebook, Twitter, Gmail, Yahoo, or Hotmail. The Find your friends page should be your first stop. Follow the simple instructions to import friends from any or all the services. findyourfriends

**PowerUser Tip: Import your friends into a couple of separate lists, (Twitter, Facebook, List1, etc…). This is especially critical if you have a large number of contacts. Most likely you’ll sort these friends into logical lists later but if you import all your friends into the default Home feed it will quickly get crowded. (We will cover lists in depth in a later post, just take my word for now.)

The Find your Friends page also suggests some popular users that you may want to follow and the recommendations are actually quite good fair. However, it’s wise to sort some of these users into a separate list so their content doesn’t overwhelm your stream.

Another great place to find people comes courtesy of a fine chap named Louis Gray. He has a monthly feature called “10 People to Follow on Friendfeed” where he recommends different people you should consider following. He gives a short bio of the Friendfeeder, a few of their interests, and a link to their Friendfeed profile. His recommendations are top notch and I look for this post every month. Check out his past recommendations here

Find some Groups

Friendfeed Groups (used to be called Rooms so you’ll find these terms used interchangeably) are a great way to find people and topics of interest to you. Start by visiting the Find public groups page where you can search for topics and see some of the popular groups. You’ll find groups centered around everything from parenting to WordPress. Just click the group name to see the public page.

ffgroups

Here are a couple of tips for evaluating a group:

  • Check out the number of subscribers in the top right hand corner. This will give you an idea of the popularity of the group.
  • Mouse over the icons underneath the group description and see what sites or types of content are automatically posted to the group.
  • Scroll through the group page and look for signs of life. Look for the date/timestamp of posted content as well as user participation. You want to ensure the group is still active and that it isn’t a dumping ground for someone’s personal agenda.

subtogroup

To subscribe to the group just click the blue link that says “Subscribe to Groupname”. Friendfeed will then give you an additional option to import the group content into your feed. Again, its a good idea to consider segmenting this group into a list other than your Homefeed, you can create a list specifically for this group or you can create a list that you can use for all your groups. (Yes I know I sound like a broken record on using lists for management of your stream but it’s an invaluable tool to managing Friendfeed)

You can also use groups to discover some more people, just click the subscribers link to see other members of the group. This is an easy way to find people with similar interests.

Interact

This should be obvious but Friendfeed doesn’t reward lurking it is all about participation. Jump in and –

  • Start commenting and liking different posts
  • Keep track of your conversations via the “My Discussions” link in the sidebar
  • Subscribe to people that leave insightful or witty comments

Soon you’ll be making friends and enjoying the most interesting and vibrant community on the internet. I hope this helps ease your entry into Friendfeed and don’t forget to follow me, friendfeed.com/tsudohnimh. Thanks for reading.

**UPDATE**

This page sparked a lively discussion on the Friendfeed suggested friends list. Many of the comments highlight the fact that some of these Friendfeed users are popular only due to their Twitter followers and they don’t really add value to Friendfeed. I agree so I wanted to update the post to include a Louis Gray suggestion to check out FFholic’s list of most active users.

16 responses to “I joined Friendfeed, now what? -UPDATED”

  1. Well you got me to sign up. I like how it aggregates all of my content to a single page. Hopefully this will be the last social tool site I'll have to join for a while, it's tough to keep up with it all!

  2. tsudohnimh says:

    Glad you liked the post and signed up for Friendfeed. Stay Tuned on Tuesday
    for the centerpiece of my presentation and the learn the How and Why of
    Friendfeed. I appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.

  3. Luke Smith says:

    It's very hard to do social media right – There are to many social networks and network (twitter or FF) require a lot of work and learning curve to make it meaningful.It's just to hard and takes too long to be social and add unique value to each tool FF , Twitter , Facebook (but worth it if you can do it). Lately i have found that people only are using social media to distribute there one way conversation. So Social Media is very powerful but too hard to maintain to make it sustainable – eventually people will see it's just a lot of people broadcasting poor quality content that is not unique from one social network to the next. Thanks for writing this post I have not made the effort to find unique FF people to follow in a long time. Follow me at @lukejsmith and comment on FF @http://friendfeed.com/777ljs

  4. Great advice! I'm going to bookmark this so I can share it with anyone looking for advice on how to get started on friendfeed. I’m biased, but December is a particularly good ten people to follow list from Louis! I’m looking forward to your follow up. I have yet to separate anyone into lists, so a good strategy for this will be most appreciated

  5. tsudohnimh says:

    @lukejsmith I completely agree that social media takes a lot of work but I've found it very useful and rewarding. I'm hoping that I can help others learn the lessons that we all learned the long way.

    I also think your point about broadcasting goes to the heart of managing social networks. The goal is increasing your Signal-to-Noise ratio and that is one of the reasons I find Friendfeed so valuable. Thanks for taking the time to read and for leaving a comment. I really appreciate it.

  6. tsudohnimh says:

    Michael, thank you for the kind words and I'm glad that you are thinking of bookmarking this post so you can share it with others looking to get started in Friendfeed. I'll be posting my major presentation tomorrow afternoon and then there will be follow up posts covering Lists, Stream Management, and Groups.

    I was given the opportunity to speak about Friendfeed to a peer group and decided to take this opportunity to write my “Essential Guide to Twitter”

    I really appreciate you taking the time to read and for commenting. BTW, the December post has an outdated link to your Friendfeed Profile.

    For everyone else check out Louis's Dec 10 people to follow here (http://www.louisgray.com/live/2008/12/10-people…) and follow Michael on Friendfeed here http://friendfeed.com/mikeroblogger

  7. InternetStrategist says:

    Some may be interested in my FriendFeed Challenge post as it contains recommended Top Ten lists from active FF users. I promise to update it with Louis Gray's latest lists so they're easy to locate all in one place.

  8. tsudohnimh says:

    @Growmap I really like your Friendfeed Challenge post. This is a great way to encourage recommendations from the Friendfeed community. I'll be submitting my own list soon. (I've got to make it through this week of Friendfeed posts first 🙂

    I also appreciate you collecting Louis Gray's “10 People” posts. Perhaps we should create a Friendfeed Follow Recommendations room to encourage others to contribute to a central repository. We could solve the problem instead of waiting on Friendfeed.

  9. InternetStrategist says:

    That was my thought when I wrote the FriendFeed Challenge. TwiTip had their Top Ten Twitter user lists and I was fairly new to FF and wanted to know who those I admired would recommend there. Thanks for starting the room at http://friendfeed.com/friendfeedfollow to collect all the recommendations in one place. Why didn't I think of that? I created FF rooms for other ideas.

  10. […] For some more detailed tips on getting the most out of Friendfeed, I heartily recommend this article from KnowtheNetwork. […]

  11. Louis Gray says:

    A fine chap? Don't overdo it now. 🙂

  12. orangejack says:

    You've got some great posts about getting FF up and working. It's “FriendFeed Week” on my Orangejack Facebook Page and I featured this one today. I'll prolly link out to a couple more of yours before the week is over. Well done! The Page is http://facebook.com/orangejack if you're interested.

  13. orangejack says:

    You've got some great posts about getting FF up and working. It's “FriendFeed Week” on my Orangejack Facebook Page and I featured this one today. I'll prolly link out to a couple more of yours before the week is over. Well done! The Page is http://facebook.com/orangejack if you're interested.

  14. Rob Williams says:

    You've got some great posts about getting FF up and working. It's “FriendFeed Week” on my Orangejack Facebook Page and I featured this one today. I'll prolly link out to a couple more of yours before the week is over. Well done! The Page is http://facebook.com/orangejack if you're interested.

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