Businesses, Don’t Become a Social Media Pariah!


Share on LinkedIn

I love social media. I love to browse photos of my friends, family and strangers on Instagram, I love to read pointless status updates on Facebook from people I haven’t seen since 2004, I love to scroll through movie stills, silly GIFs and quotes in clever typography on Tumblr, and I love to read jokes and random thoughts consisting of less than 140 characters on Twitter.

People who love social media know the difference between “being on a social network” and being part of a social community, which is something a lot of businesses are still learning. If you take the effort, you can get to know people who are complete strangers in real life (I call them Internet friends) and you can start to pick up on themes a community regularly talks about (for example, why does Reddit love the TV show Firefly so much? And is everyone on Tumblr watching Supernatural except for me?) Contributing positively to that community is what business bloggers should focus on.

As you dive deeper into these social communities and you find people who like the same things you like, you start to discover new interests that you possibly didn’t know about before and new techniques you never knew could be applied to inside sales. But you also grow to hate things that you may have never even noticed before.

I have put together a list of things that I hate on social media so that you can avoid them in the future. Don’t do these things with your business’s social media accounts, or else you’ll become a pariah on the Internet.

Auto Direct Messages on Twitter – This is very important for all you “professional” people I follow on Twitter. I get really excited when I see I have a DM (because DMs are secret and therefore more awesome than your run-of-the-mill tweet) only to discover that it is actually just a generic message sent to everyone, begging us to like you on Facebook or add your blog to our RSS feed. I don’t like this, and I know I’m not alone, so #CutItOut.

Liking your own post on Facebook – One day, I was browsing Facebook, and I noticed my friend Kevin liked his own posts – his statuses, his posts on friends’ walls, his pictures. Why is he doing this? Obviously he likes these things; otherwise he wouldn’t have posted them! Now every time I notice someone liked their own post on Facebook, my blood starts to boil, I feel my face turning red, and I find myself repeating my calming mantra so I don’t accidently take out my aggression on my sweet and innocent Kindle Fire. Stop it.

Strangers on Linkedin – You’re a total stranger. We have never worked together, gone to school together, or met one another in person. For some reason, you just connected with me on Linkedin, but I have no idea why because you didn’t bother to take the time to personalize your invitation to me. I wish I knew why you wanted to be my Linkedin in friend so badly but I guess I’ll add you anyway, just so I can finally hit 500+ connections. Start personalizing your LinkedIn requests.

Twitter accounts that are just a list of links to blogs – If the only thing you are doing on Twitter is posting links to blogs, you’re boring and you need to step up your Twitter game. Add some personality in there! Post a TwitPic every once in a while! Show me that you are a real person and not just a robot that is auto-uploading every blog you read.

Being mean – This is a pretty generic one, but it’s something that I think we have all come across in our journey through the Interwebs. Just because you’re sitting safely behind your computer screen doesn’t mean you can be a jerk to everyone. Would you have made that YouTube comment if you were talking to this person face to face? No? So don’t do it online. Hopefully businesses are already being courteous online, but it can’t hurt to remind everyone!

Too Many Hashtags – This one really gets me fired up on Instagram, which some businesses do use. And some businesses do also abuse the hashtag. I get it, your photograph is so amazing that you want as many people to see it as possible, but you need to relax with the hashtags. If I have to scroll down a page to get past all the hashtags you used, that’s too many hashtags. One or two is the perfect amount. #CutItOut.

It felt really good to get that off my chest. Thanks for listening everyone! Hopefully, you will take my advice, so your business can succeed on social media. Maybe we can even start establishing an Internet friendship!

What annoys you on social media? Please take advantage of the comments section to air your own social media grievances.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Colleen MacNeil
I am a Business Development Representative for AGSalesworks, assisting both SMB and Enterprise level accounts in multiple industries.


Please use comments to add value to the discussion. Maximum one link to an educational blog post or article. We will NOT PUBLISH brief comments like "good post," comments that mainly promote links, or comments with links to companies, products, or services.

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here