Sometimes social media can be confusing or even difficult, especially if you are just joining. So every Friday, I do a post on how to keep it simple. This week I want to cover the Rules of Social Media…
I hate to disappoint, but there is no one-size fits all set of rules. You have to develop your own set of rules that work for you. However, there are a few things to consider when developing those rules:
- When you become active in social media, don’t forget the “social” aspect. In order to recognize the full value of social media, engage with other people. Just as if you were in person, engage in conversation. If you are only interested in talking and not listening, you will miss out on so many things that social media has to offer.
- Determine what is reasonable and sustainable for you. Some people are on and engaged 24/7, others are only involved 20 minutes a day. Either option is fine, unless you are representing an employer then you should follow the company guidelines. It is better when you can be consistent because you will (hopefully) develop relationships with others in social media and it’s easier when they know what/when/where to expect you.
- If you are thinking of blowing off steam using social media, save yourself a lot of headache and don’t. This applies especially when it is personal. If you are having an argument with a friend, keep it private. If you are disgruntled with a company, before you blast them using social media, determine what outcome you would like and then approach them in a civil manner.
- Follow the people you want to follow. You do not have to follow someone just because they follow you. It is nice to reciprocate, but it is not a rule. Also, you may follow someone who doesn’t follow you back, don’t be offended. If you are following them because you want to, the follow-back is less important.
- Do not ever, ever, ever buy followers. You are better served by having 100 followers that you engage with, rather than having 10,000 that you do not know and that do not know you.
- Always report spammers – you can tell someone is a spammer when you look at their tweetstream and every tweet is the same or a variation of the same thing. It can be difficult to filter through the “noise” and we have to eliminate spammers to make that easier.
- Last but not least, don’t be afraid to ask questions. You will generally find that there are a lot of helpful people who will be happy to point you in the right direction.
Do you have any other helpful tips that you have used to develop your rules? Would love to hear them. **This was originally posted earlier this year, but thought it important enough to share again.
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I am following up with my article on the Social Media Beast. I cover some of the tricks I use.