A client recently asked me to share some insight on Social Media Etiquette to a large group of industry professionals. Of course I jumped at the opportunity. How many of you wonder if you are sharing the right mixture on your social media channels? "It's my personal account, I look hot in that little bikini on that far off beach in Tahiti, no one from work will ever see it!" WRONG.... here's my advice, take it or leave, but read it.
What is your Brand?
Whether you like it or not, what you post to social media is your image. It's like glue, stuck all over you. Everyone has an overall brand (just like the company you may work for). Be that person with integrity, dedicate your brand to your accomplishments and emphasize those achievements, toot your horn! Find out where you want to go and get there.
As silly as it sounds, make a list of the things you should post about and probably shouldn't. Writing it down makes it real. It also makes you acknowledge them. Employees are the Ambassadors of their company in the corporate world. So whether its personal or professional, keep those posts on brand.
Depending on the Social Media Platform, the ratio of personal vs. professional will differ. We all know LinkedIn is dedicated to business, don't go posting those garden photos you are so proud of. That won't get you to far and might even cost you some followers. But as far as Facebook goes, it is a platform that feeds off of showing personality. So show your personal life but do it in a professional way. You wouldn't show up for an interview in that bikini so that is probably not appropriate on any of your SM accounts if you are currently seeking a new position.
It's the 21st century. Do yourself a favor and google yourself. See what comes up and don't forget to click over to images. I'm sure you will be surprised at the random photos that pop up from something so unimportant that you posted years ago. Then ask yourself, 'Is this My Brand?' But don't stop there. Visit all your social media accounts and delete those photos and posts that don't represent your character. Make a point to be in control and DON'T RELY ON PRIVACY SETTINGS.
Employers and Clients Do Check Your Accounts
Before and Employer hires, you better believe they are going to check out that candidates character as best they can. And whats the easiest way to do so? Ding, Ding, Ding... Social Media. This accounts for employed people as well. It is not uncommon for a company to see what their employees are up to or even for a client to check you out before they sign that contract. If you are making posts with your company name and they are sitting right next to a political rant you just had to get off your chest, how do you think that would fare? Every organization wants positive reach. And what better way to achieve that than happy employees posting company accomplishments they might be a part of? But when you mix those with inappropriate personal posts things can get hairy and the risk for Brand Consistency on a corporate level can become skewed. So have good sense.
Take It Seriously
Social Media is an amazing tool. We get to build a database of like-minded friends and colleagues to stay on the up-and-up of current trends and news. We can connect with the vastest array of professionals and stay linked for those big deals that will unfold in the future (if we play our cards right). Taking advantage of this resource handed to us could have huge benefits but if it is not used properly could have consequences for years to come.
Knoxville Graphic House specializes in Social Media Management for companies big and small. Creating alternative marketing solutions for businesses looking to stand out, be productive, and grow.
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