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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A Visual Guide to Social Media Etiquette

A thought of the day: "Four things come not back: the spoken word, the sped arrow, the past life and the neglected opportunity" - Proverb

With the advent of technology, social media has become the order of the day. Business turn to social media for increased exposure while decreasing their bottom line. And when used effectively, it can allow for greater customer services and improved brand awareness.

Unfortunately, it can also lead to mishaps and devastating mistakes with push of a button.

A Visual Guide to Social Media Etiquette written by Rebekah Radice and in her articles she offers the do's and don'ts of social media etiquette for business.

Would you like to know how to conduct yourself appropriately, no matter the social network? Ready to increase your use of social media without committing an embarrassing faux-pas?

Social Media Etiquette for Business Facebook

Want to build better relationships on Facebook? Get interactive, responsive and targeted. Know the needs of your fans and consistently give it to them, day after day.

Facebook Etiquette Do's and Don'ts
  • Don't make your fans feel unimportant. If someone takes the time to comment or ask a question, don't ignore them. Instead, try to respond to every comment, even if it irks you. Always remember, the opinions of others matter. You never know, you might turn around a negative situation or gain respect with your timely (and appropriate) response.
  • Use Hashtags wisely and sparingly. One or two relevant hashtags make sense, however, any more than that can just feel spammy.
  • Know when to post for maximum engagement. Pay attention to  your analytics and note when your fans are most active.
  • Always provide value. Be informative and entertaining, don't spend the majority of your time spamming your own wall with promotional content. Your goals is to be resource to your fans. Find their need and fill it daily.

Twitter has changed the way businesses communicate with consumers. No longer required to pick up the phone to connect with you, Twitter gives potential clients easy access to your brand story.

Want to expand your presence through the power of Twitter? Follow these simple rules!

Twitter Etiquette Do's and Dont's
  • You can only have 140 characters to share your message. Keep it concise, but useful.
  • Be quick in responding to comments and questions. Monitor your mentions!
  • Avoid going on negative rants, keep it positive and upbeat! No, this doesn't mean you can't have a bad day, just  don't make every day a bad day that's shared across Twitter.
  • Are you tweeting for business? Don't make the mistakes of only posting business content. Find a balance between business and personal tweets. People want to get to know the person behind the brand.
  • Use Twitter to listen to what's being said about your business. Now respond in a conversational and authentic way. Continue reading...
Google Plus

Google Plus can provide rocket fuel to your already established online brand. With a tie to the world's largest search engine, testing the marketing waters just makes sense. But as with all social networks, Google Plus has its own set of rules.

Google Plus Etiquette Do's and Don'ts
  • Keep the conversations going. Always mention users when you comment or respond.
  • If you share someone else's work ( and you should) be sure to give credit where credit is due. This builds reciprocity and credibility.
  • Don't just share post for the sake of sharing. Curate content that matters to your followers and then inject your personal view.
  • Use circles to manage your relationships. Use specific groups such as co-workers or industry influencers.
  • Google Plus lets you format your posts. Use them to make your post visually appealing and easy to read.
  • Join communities like Plus Your Business to interact with other like-minded business professionals eager to learn more about Google Plus. Run by Martin Shervington, this community is your one-stop-shop for all things Google Plus.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so share your story across this visual medium. As one of the newer networks on the block, Instagram is rife with social media faux pas.

Instagram Etiquette Do's and Dont's
  • Never ask people to follow you; leave them to their own initiative. Instead, work on the image you wish to project and let followers naturally connect with you.
  • Be considerate and limit your number of posts. Nobody wants your content to fill up their entire feed.
  • You get what you give. Engage with other people's photos and give them a reason to engage with yours.
  • Use hashtags where appropriate, but don't use use hashtags that aren't relevant to your photo. Continue reading...

As the internet buzzes about with social media activity, identifying what sites provides the best networking opportunity is simple a mouse click away. LinkedIn the largest online professional network, is an excellent resource for job seeks and brands alike.

But don't get caught making these errors.

LinkedIn Etiquette Do's and Don'ts
  • LinkedIn is a professional setting, so keep your posts and interaction industry related.
  • Fill out a complete profile. You never know where your next opportunity might come from.
  • Always send a custom connection request and then follow-up with a well-crafted welcome and thank you letter.
  • Resist the urge to send mass requests for recommendations or endorsements. Be specific and ensure who ask has the knowledge to endorse your skills and talents.
  • Contribute as much as possible in LinkedIn groups. They're a great place to build relationships and raise awareness. Continue reading...

I don't know how this one didn't make it to the infographic, but Pinterest definitely tops my list as a go-to social network business. Unfortunately, the best way to use Pinterest to market your business is still unclear for many.

Avoid Pinterest pitfalls and newbie mistakes with these simple Pinterest rules.

Pinterst Etiquette Do's and Don'ts
  • Do pin all of your content. From blog posts to videos, add your proprietary content to relevant boards.
  • Share other people's content to your boards to create a diverse and rich pinning experience for your followers.
  • Do complete the description for every pin and make your pin "searchable."
  • Don't ever edit the link when pinning other people's content. Make sure content links to its original source.
  • Space out your pins so you're not spamming follower news feed with an immense of amount of content all at once.
  • Do follow other relevant pinners that are consistent in their efforts and pay attention to their best practices.
Rebekah's final thoughts

While the word "etiquette" might sound a little old-fashioned, it's still an important component in your social media interaction.

Not only does it make everyone's use of social media more enjoyable, but it eliminates the often messy outcome associated with breaking the rules. What social media media etiquette rule would you add to the list. Continue reading...

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