The ABC’s of Social Media

Kasey Schumacher

kasey schumacher | social cues | sept. 2018

How is it already September? This month marks the bittersweet ending of summer and the beginning of a fresh start as fall creeps in and school is back in session. In the spirit of a new school year, I decided to go back to the basics and provide a few ABC's of social media. These reminders can be applied primarily to professional social media users, but personal users will find them useful too!

A – Accuracy. Above all else, make sure the information you share via social media is accurate. Checking twice (or three, four, five times!) to ensure the accuracy of facts, dates, photos and permissions = worth it in the long run.

B – Beware of scams, “keyboard warriors" and hacks.

C – Consistency. Consistent content and messaging will allow your channels to have one voice and persona.

D – Determine your social media goals by year, quarter, month, week and even day! It allows you to focus on what messages will be the most effective.

E – Evaluate. Be sure you have a thorough way of evaluating how your efforts and channels are performing.

F – Fill out your profiles completely. Let people know who you are and don't make your followers hunt and search for information that should be up front.

G – Generosity. Express your appreciation for customers/fans/followers who choose to pay attention to your organization or brand. They're the whole reason it can keep going!

H – Humor. A little (tactful and appropriate) humor can go a long way.

I – Integrity. It's very easy to spot pages and profiles struggling to be authentic. Don't be one of those pages.

J – Joy. It's called socialmedia for a reason. Don't forget to have a little fun with it!

K – Kind. Be kind in your responses and messages when it might be easy to write a heated response. It will pay off in the end, I promise. If you wouldn't say it loud and proud in person, don't type it in a comment or message.

L – Less is more. I struggle with this one! A brief and to-the-point caption, photo or video can say a lot.

M – Make connections. Social media is a two-way street. Don't just push out content on your own page. Interact with other brands, followers and influencers.

N – New. Social media is constantly changing. Make it a point to keep up with what is new culturally, socially or technologically with social media to stay in the game.

O – Observe. Be conscious of what others are doing, saying and how they're interacting on social media. You can learn a lot by carving out some time to simply watch and digest the actions of others.

P – Personality. Let the personality of your brand or organization shine. Don't just spit out facts and information with posts. Add a personal twist.

Q – Quality. Like many things in life, quality far outweighs quantity. It's more meaningful to have one dedicated follower who shares your content than 10 who don't.

R – Realistic. Be realistic with your goals. You're probably not going to gain 10,000 followers overnight (maybe, though!) and your video may not be the next viral sensation — and that's ok. Be realistic with what you're looking to accomplish with social media.

S – Share. Sharing the content of others is caring!

T – Time. Social media functions on a different clock than other media platforms — it's 24/7 and there's the expectation that feedback will come much, much faster. Be conscious of time when it comes to responding to comments, messages and even when you choose to post.

U – User-oriented. Always remember it isn't about you, it's about the user.

V – Variety. While it's necessary to be consistent, use a variety of content (photos, videos, gifs, etc.) to ensure you're not being boring or predictable.

W – Work. Social media requires time and effort. It is supposed to be fun, but it's also work that involves executing a variety of strategies to achieve goals.

X – Xerox, as in copy. Borrow good ideas, but make them your own. Ask for permission always and collaborate when possible!

Y – Yes! Be open to new ideas and have a “yes!" attitude as opposed to a “we can't do that" attitude when it comes to trying new things in a social media space.

Z – Zzz, as in sleep. Take time to be away from social media, too. It doesn't have to be all-consuming to be effective.

Kasey Schumacher is the marketing director for Let Me Be Frank Productions by day and a performer for the troupe by night. When she isn't updating Facebook or singing a 1970s classic, she enjoys running, cooking, questioning final rose picks on 'The Bachelor" and planning overly extravagant trips to Disney.

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