How you ‘should use’ social media is up to you. The social media platforms are there to be explored, used and tested. New trends come and go, and there will always be new apps and platforms to discover. We are using social media in a variety of ways in different contexts; it depends on culture, family, school, work, and aspirations. There will never just be one answer to how you should use social media, but many.
When we post and engage online we say something about ourselves, and here I’ve collected five wise social media and personal branding tips that can be used by everyone without too much effort.
- Have a current profile picture of yourself that reflect who you are now, not a random cat, and not a photo of you with your old hair colour.
- Be nice and helpful online. Join groups and share tips and be part of discussions.
- If you are using social media to get a new job be ‘net smart’. Have a relevant social media bio that’s sharing the same message on all social media platforms. Make sure you have your skills and experiences documents on all social media platforms you are using, crosslink between them, so it’s easy to read more about your skills. Your behaviour in social media gives away your opinions, your judgement and how you communicate. Share relevant content with your followers, and behave like a decent human being.
- Tell your network about what’s going on in your life, both positive and negative. I don’t mean that you should complain 24/7 if you are not feeling well, but don’t hold back if there is something that you would like to share that’s not positive. Your online community would be pretty useless if you are not able to share what’s making you sad or upset. After all, life is complicated, and distressing things are happening to everyone. To be more personal in your posts can be a challenge, but it’s more exciting for your friends and connections to read your thoughts.
- People who are rude and shout at others online will brand themselves as narcissistic bullies, and we remember nasty comments longer than friendly comments. Many social media networks are also ‘bumping’ posts that are commented on, so more people see them. So the rule is, no shouting or bullying.