Everybody uses different flavors & different thicknesses of smoke.
I personally use Hickory Pellets & Dust nearly 100% the time, and I keep the smoke going from beginning to end, unless it's in foil, like Step #2 on Ribs, Butts, etc. Plus I don't use any smoke at the beginning of Sausage, Bacon, Ham, etc, if I'm working on finishing up the Pellicle.
However I use what I call from TBS to what I call Medium Smoke most of the time.
I know what that means, but it's hard to describe, and if I open the door to get a good picture it would mostly be gone before I can get a picture of it.
All I can say is I go from as light as TBS, where can can just barely see anything coming out of my top vent to as heavy as what I call Medium, which is a little less then half as thick as you would have to make it to not be able to see through it. Never any thicker than that. IMO, if you can't see your meat through the smoke, you wouldn't want to eat it either.
To me it's not Rocket Science---It's just keep it light & keep it as long as you want.
Note: I do not use Mesquite---Hickory is strong enough for me.