Your Quick & Helpful Social Media Etiquette Checklist for Business
In the continually developing world of social media, good social media etiquette is something expected by brands worldwide from their followers. With every GIF, post and share, people are watching your brand with close eyes and your followers will notice if something doesn’t quite appear right in your posts. But don’t let that scare you!
We’ve compiled a 5-step checklist to help you nail your social media etiquette.
Is your social media on-brand?
First things first, what are you saying in your content? Are you using language that could cause offence? Are you swearing? Are you using abbreviations? These are all areas to consider when creating content for your brand’s social media platforms.
Your brand’s tone of voice must be informative, engaging, but importantly, must not cause offence or present your brand in a negative light as a result. If in doubt, there’s no harm in consulting your company’s brand guidelines which may include advice on tone of voice. (Learn more about our work creating branding guidelines here!)
Ultimately, remember who your audience are and consider how they will respond. Maintaining your brand identity online is just as important as offline and using your brand guidelines to create content that is innovative and interesting to your readers.
2. User Generated Content: Where’s your content sourced from?
Not everything your brand posts, your brand may necessarily own. Always double check where the content is sourced from and always credit accordingly if you’re not the owner.
Sharing content from other users can be a great way to build your brand, it showcases your customers’ personalities, but for brands thinking strategically, you can build a bank of images that you can use for future promotions.
User generated content also helps your brand develop an online community of brand advocates. By sharing and using content from other users, it shows that your brand’s actively engaged with its audience. The simple gesture of sharing your audience’s content shows that you appreciate them and care about what they think!
Always remember to do the following, though:
- Ask permission from the social media user, by commenting on photos or messaging/asking them directly. A template for example: “Great photo! Would you mind if we please share this post with our audience? We’ll give you full-credit, of course!”.
You can also link out to a terms and conditions page which will be covered by your legal team. See an example from Hotel Indigo below.
Once you’ve received permission, repost, share and use across your promotional channels when you see fit! But make a note of their Twitter/Instagram handle and name to credit them in any posts. Here’s another example from the HSBC National Cycling Centre.
3. Don’t Spam Your Content
Posting too much in one day at the same time on your social media in ‘bursts’ can turn off your followers and irritate them. If you post on social media multiple times with a sales-focus within the same few hours on one account, you are posting in ‘bursts’.
Posting in ‘bursts’ is one of the main reasons users unfollow brands on Twitter, as you can see in the stats below from Buffer. It’s viewed as a desperate push by brands for sales. Vary your content on social media and you’ll be on to a social media winner!
There are varying arguments as to how many times you should post a day on social media platforms. But above all, make sure that what you’re posting on social media adds value and is also not just about selling your product or experience.
4. Check your grammar, syntax, register and punctuation
It’s a simple mistake, but it can happen to the best of us. Checking your grammar and punctuation is a simple thing to do, but it shows professionalism from a brand which is what you want!
- Rule #1: As with any piece of content you write, whether it’s an email to a colleague or a press release, you need to make sure that your punctuation is correct. Creating content for social media relies on the same grammar and punctuation principles as any copy you create for a brand.
- Rule #2: Use first-person plural when representing a brand, such as “Us” or “We”.
If in doubt about a post, always ask for a second pair of eyes.
5. Respond to users once they engage!
You’re all set - you’ve started posting across your brand’s social media, but how do you respond?
The clue is in the term ‘social media’ - it’s all about being social and creating conversation! Whilst shouting and promoting your brand is important on social media, it’s equally if not more important, to engage with potential customers and respond to queries appropriately.
If somebody messages a page directly, address the individual directly e.g. “Hi Helen” and sign off with your name as it’s more personable!
Always be polite and understanding in tone and you’ll be en route to social media success with your followers!
Your five-step social media etiquette checklist and what more you can do to maximise your ROI on social media.
So there you have it - Our five-step checklist for social media etiquette success. Social Media goes beyond just posting your content and competition to stand out on social media is high. But there are also a few
Wondering how you can take your social media content to the next level? We’ve got a few more blogs you can read that will help your social media lift off…
If you’re curious to learn more about our work, you can also take a look at a few of our success stories here:
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