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Am I Using Social Media Correctly?

March 17, 2016 - fifteen

We all use Social Media. Sites like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have become a well-ingrained part of modern life. As such, it only makes sense that as a business, we want to leverage these tools to get our message out to the masses. Hey, it’s an internet billboard and everyone is invited!

However, it’s very easy to get caught ‘doing it wrong’. Here’s a list of things that we’ve seen companies (and individuals!) doing wrong on the bigger social networks, and why you shouldn’t be doing those things.

Signal to Noise Ratio

I’ll start with Twitter though this can apply to all of the major social networks. Twitter can be compared to a motorway at rush hour, and your tweet can be lost amongst the traffic.

There are several things which you can do to combat this, including (but not limited to):

  • Always use “Rich Media” –  this means Images, animated GIF’s and videos.
  • Post at regular times of the day, there are tools which can help you do this, such as Hootsuite.
  • Include a link – make sure it is relevant to the content of your Tweet

An Example of “doing it wrong”

doing_it_wrong_no_links_or_media

#Spam

This one is mainly for Instagram though you can be a big offender on Twitter. Hashtags are a nice little tool to get your point across while also providing a link to related content. An example is #mondaymotivation which we use here at Fifteen. Want to see more Monday Motivation on a particularly bad Monday, you can click the #mondaymotivation hashtag and see all of our #mondaymotivation posts.

However, when there are more than 3-4 hashtags in an Instagram comment or tweet, then that’s too many. A good rule of thumb which I try to use is to make sure the length of the content is longer than the hashtags. A pet peeve of mine is seeing whole comments on Instagram full of hashtags which aren’t related to the post at all.

An Example of “doing it wrong”

doing_it_wrong_hashtag_overload

#Piggybacking

This one is mainly Twitter though Facebook also has trending features. Hashtag piggybacking is essentially where you see that a hashtag (like #mondaymotivation) is trending (popular) and you then post a whole bunch of updates which have nothing to do with the trending hashtag – just to get your post some exposure from those who are checking the trending hashtags.

For example, if Fifteen got #mondaymotivation trending in the UK, if someone was posting “Room Wanted” ads with the hashtag of #mondaymotivation, that would be classed as hashtag piggybacking, which has the unfortunate side effect of making you look desperate for attention.

An Example of “doing it wrong”

doing_it_wrong_hashtag_piggybacking

Thumbnails

When you’re posting your content from your website or blog to social networks, they’ll often fetch a preview image to display next to your post. This is often a thumbnail which you set. On WordPress, it’s usually the Featured Image which you can set. Make sure those images are high quality and illustrate what the post is all about.

Remember,  they’re the thing which will encourage the user to click.

An Example of “doing it wrong”

doing_it_wrong_fb

Bonus – LinkedIn

A lot of people seem to forget that LinkedIn is a social network which can be leveraged just like any other. This can often mean that LinkedIn is not as crowded as Facebook or Twitter so your posts may get more attention. Bonus!

In Conclusion

Hopefully, you now see the common mistakes people can make when using Social Media, and you can avoid those in your own travels. Happy Tweeting!

 

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