Social Media Etiquette – 10 Rules to Follow

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Social Media Etiquette: 10 Rules to Follow

Sourced m2social | Carlo Pulido | May 16th 2017

Social Media Etiquette: 10 Rules to Follow banner

Based on active monthly user data, Filipinos spend an average of four hours and 17 minutes each day on various social media sites including Facebook, Snapchat, and Twitter. This is revealed in the Digital in 2017 report wherein the Philippines ranked 1st in number of hours spent on social media daily.

While it reflects that Internet usage in the country is on the rise, it also means that the need for social media etiquette is stronger than ever.

As you browse your social media feeds, it’s easy to spot outrageous posts, appalling comments, and annoying content. But before you decide to deactivate your account or shut the social media noise out of frustration, why not try to improve the environment by becoming a responsible user and learning the proper social media etiquette that both businesses and private users should follow?

1. Don’t Badmouth Anyone

While social media is home to tons of cute cat videos and funny baby memes, it’s also filled with hatred and outrage.

dont badmouth anyone

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

Don’t sow hatred. Social media should be a platform to initiate meaningful discussion and promote better communication. It’s not the place to vent out your anger on something or someone. Don’t add to its toxicity by trolling and spreading negativity.

dont badmouth anyone

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

Play nice with your competitors. Badmouthing or marring the image of your competitor should never be the name of the game. If a user slurs your brand or spreads negative propaganda at about your business, take time to consider your steps in responding to this situation professionally.

2. Respect the Opinions of Other Netizens

Accept the fact that not everyone has the same opinion as you do. However reasonable you believe your arguments to be, you won’t be able to convince everyone. Keep this in mind when you comment, post, or share anything in social media.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

In case you find yourself in a heated exchange with other users, always remember to be respectful. Make sure your statements are based on hard facts. Also, avoid attacking the person personally and never resort to threats as this can be lawfully punished.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

Never try to dip into matters that’s not part of your business. As an entrepreneur or social media manager, you must know how to stay on the sideline. Stay culturally and socially sensitive to protect your brand reputation and to keep the trust of your customers.

3. Always Keep Your Audience in Mind

The number one reason why most users find trouble in social media is because they fail to keep their audience in mind. By considering your audience, you should be able to identify what’s worth sharing or posting and what’s not.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

Be mindful of who can view what you post, comment, and share. You can tweak the privacy settings in your social media account to control what people can see.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

It pays to be sensitive to your audience, especially when managing a brand. Your social media efforts and the content you post in social media should never be offensive or inappropriate. Instead, it should be valuable, shareable, and original.

4. Know When to and When Not to Tag Photos

In line with the previous item, social media sites can be a peaceful and fun place if users are sensitive when it comes to tagging posts or photos. We should all respect each other’s privacy.

FOR PERSONAL USERS:

Asking for permission before tagging a person is a good practice because candid shots that are unflattering could mar the personal and professional image of a person, Tagging the wrong photo might even cost him or her a job.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

It is expected of you to share content that is professional and related to the business. This is rarely a problem for most businesses.

5. Monitor the Frequency of Your Posts

Spammy posts or the over-sharing of content can be annoying.

FOR PERSONAL USERS:

You don’t have to share everything in social media. You don’t have to post everything about your personal life and your day-to-day activities.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

A standard in keeping your social media accounts active is to keep a content calendar. It’s a handy tool to avoid clutter in your social media profile and keep your content regularly scheduled for posting. This way you can avoid over-sharing.

6. Build a Reputable Image

If a stranger would visit your profile, what would he or she think or say about you? It’s a good practice to examine your profile and identify what image you are portraying through your posts and shares.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:
Posts and shares can make or break your career. Hiring officers now check social media to find and screen potential talent. They can cross-check your background through your Facebook profile. Always be careful with what you share or post.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

To prevent your employees from jeopardizing your brand reputation, you should keep a well-defined policy regarding the representation of your organization in social media. The views and opinions of your employees and execs should not reflect your brand’s. Posts on behalf of your brand should always follow the rigours of your social media guide and policy.

7. Give Due Credit to Your Sources

Social media is a wonderful place to share your work but be sure to ask permission and cite your sources when you use material or content from others.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

Be respectful to the authors of your sources. Always give credit where it’s due.

OR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

Plagiarism is costly for businesses. To avoid an expensive and troublesome social media blunder, follow these steps on how not to infringe copyright.

8. Don’t Spread Fake News

Facebook recently advised users on how to spot fake online content. However, Facebook can’t filter everything that is shared on its channel. This also becomes the responsibility of users. While there is a lot of great contents online, it is your moral and social responsibility not to mislead others by spreading fake news.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

Always check your sources and be critical with what you read. Don’t be easily fooled with unreliable information. Here’s a guide on how to spot fake news sites.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

With every content you share, the integrity of your brand is at stake. Enterprises should always draw from reliable sources. Always check the authenticity of the information you share.

9. Say No to Cyberbullying

Every social media user should be responsible and mature enough to oppose and not be part of cyberbullying.

FOR INDIVIDUAL USERS:

Always be sensitive when interacting with others in social media. Treat them as you would like to be treated.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

Be an active contributor for healthier social media environment. Hold off contents that contain even the slightest hint of aggression.

10. Value Privacy

Part of building a good reputation online is to keep anything personal private. Keeping your personal information safe will help protect you from online fraud and identity theft.

FOR PERSONAL USERS:

Make use of the privacy settings of the social media channels you use. These settings are now more versatile and help keep your content secure.

FOR BUSINESS ACCOUNTS:

Business-related information should be confidential. Consider investing in online security and make sure you’re ready to prevent leakage of company information by anyone involved in the business.

With proper social media etiquette, you’ll make social media a better place!

Have something you want to add to this list? Feel free to share it by commenting below.