Social media is an amazing platform for both individuals and businesses alike and there are so many to choose from. However, after posting our blog on the language of email, we really got thinking about how we may come across when ‘writing’ on social media sites and decided to investigate.

We found that there are many common mistakes that can be made. Posting too many pictures, saying annoying things and using too many hashtags are amongst some of the things that people find the most irritating.

Here are our tips for making sure social media is used wisely!

1) Be aware

Ask friends and family what they think of your posts, look at who comments and retweets you, see what you think of their posts too.

2) Don’t try too hard

No one wants to be ‘that’ person on social media. Just as an article by Kate Taylor suggests, ‘that’ person is just trying too hard. Try working out your level on  The Social Effort Scale.

3)  Hold back on some of those statuses (and hashtags!)

For businesses a minimum number of tweets is recommended. An article about how often should businesses tweet suggests 3-5 tweets per day for newbies and beyond that you can’t tweet too many times. However, individuals #hashtagging too many #selfies #alldaylong could get slightly annoying. Especially if they are about #whattohavefortea.

4) Don’t lie

You will invariably get caught out by someone somewhere. A great example of this is illustrated by the man who got sacked because he was off work ‘ill’, but didn’t seem to have a problem when he posted pictures of himself at a party.

5) Don’t post everything

When you see a post that says ‘some people should bore off’, have you ever considered that they might be talking about you?

6) Watch your language

Don’t forget who is viewing your profile. If you put something out there it could get seen by your mum … or your boss. Even you aren’t friends with someone, that post could get around quicker than you think – your friend might show her mum, who then shows it to your mum. Or a work colleague who’s in for the same promotion might let slip to your boss! It’s simple – if the post isn’t something you want everyone to know, think twice before you post it.

7) Don’t act like a candy crush invite

In other words, don’t use social media as a platform for your latest venture/ interest/ job application/ life guru.

8) Drop the jargon

Don’t be tempted to use big words to try to sound intelligent. You probably won’t make sense.

9) Don’t ‘like’ yourself

This includes retweeting a compliment, adding ‘Please RT’, ‘liking’ something you wrote yourself and worst of all, liking your own ‘selfies’ – in the words of Damian in Mean Girls, it’s ‘social suicide’.

10) Avoid too strong opinions on every single one of your dislikes

Hating a political party may alienate half of your followers, disliking people who dress a certain way may alienate some more, and calling certain groups ‘losers’ may just leave you without any ‘friends’.

11) Don’t call yourself an ‘expert’

If you do (say on LinkedIn), then the chances are you are probably not one. If you can’t demonstrate it instead of stating it then you may look desperate. At the same time you could get hired for doing something that you are not capable of actually doing.

12) Definitely don’t ignore social media!

It really is fabulous when used in the right way ……

You might want to take on some of these points, or check out what kind of sharer you might be by looking at this article What type of social media personality are you?