) Social Media Etiquette Guide For Small Business Marketing
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Social Media Rules Of Conduct

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Silke Jager

I strive to publish useful and engaging articles that are beneficial to you and will help grow your business.♥ Silke
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As a small business owner you have probably been using social media sites for several years now. Did you know there were rules of conduct one should follow?

A rule of conduct, also known as etiquette, is the behavior as evaluated by an accepted standard of appropriateness for a social or professional setting. How does that apply to your social media marketing? In short, the way you present yourself online directly affects people’s opinion of you and therefore your business. Jennifer Landry is a writer and journalist from Malibu, CA, she states the following: “You might be surprised at the amount of companies, even the big ones, that don’t quite understand this simple fact and have posted inappropriate updates that made light of important events or misused certain hashtags. The simplest way to avoid this problem is to read over your posts before pressing publish. If you think it could somehow be misconstrued or you’re not sure what the hashtag means, it’s best to simply not post the update.”

I will outline the important standards and unspoken rules for the six major, most popular, social media sites: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Instagram. This will help you post updates and interact with your followers in a more professional way and will go a long way to building a trusting relationship with your online audience.

Social Media Etiquette Guide for Small Business

Facebook – Engage With Your Fans

Facebook has around 757 million daily users with Canada being its most active country.

Some important rules to follow while using Facebook:

  • Remember the 80/20 rule (inform and entertain first, sell second)
  • Make your followers feel welcome
  • Respond to all comments, the good and the bad
  • Only use 1 – 2 hashtags at the most

Twitter – Keep It Quick & Easy

Twitter has around 100 million daily users, almost half of them use it on a daily basis.

Some important rules to follow while using Twitter:

  • Always include #hashtags, but don’t overuse them
  • Don’t use all 140 characters, leave room for retweeting
  • Use your logo as your avatar
  • Don’t share personal info like what you had for a bedtime snack
  • Respond as quickly as you possibly can

Google+ – Share Valuable Info

Google+ has around 540 million monthly active users, with almost twice as many male than female users.

Some important rules to follow while using Google Plus:

  • Share targeted content to the correct groups/circles
  • Use the +username function when commenting
  • Add your commentary first when sharing a post
  • Include some subtle formatting in your updates ie. bold, italics, etc.

Pinterest – Use High Quality Images

Pinterest has around 16.1 million daily users and 80% of them are female.

Some important rules to follow while using Facebook:

  • Be sure your links work and go to the right content
  • Don’t pin low quality images
  • Always link back to the original source and give credit
  • Don’t pin a bunch of stuff at the same time, spread it our
  • Make your own website or blog images easily pinnable

LinkedIn – Be Professional

LinkedIn has around 120 million daily with 2 new members joining every second.

Some important rules to follow while using LinkedIn:

  • Keep your updates business related
  • Include a photo of yourself in your profile
  • Send a well crafted welcome message to new connections
  • Use groups to contribute information
  • Use first person when updating your page

Instagram – Share Your Story

Instagram has around 75 million daily users and 1.2 billions daily photo likes.

Some important rules to follow while using Instagram:

  • Never repost someones photo without their permission
  • Use up to 11 hashtags appropriate for your business
  • Pick a unique, relevant theme and tell your story with images
  • Engage with other, but don’t over share
  • Avoid selfies and family photos

I created this list in the order of frequency I use these six major social media sites. How frequently you should make use of these sites depends on your business and personal preference. Find out if you’re spending your social media time wisely!

With a little forethought and keeping these rules of conduct in mind you will be able to grow your small business on any of the social media sites.

Which one is your favorite social sharing site? Tell me why in the comment section below, and don’t forget to share this article.

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4 Responses to Social Media Rules Of Conduct

  • I really only use Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest and even that is very frustrating so I don’t use them a lot for my small business, mostly to share pictures of my new products. Thanks for this article, it helped me realize how many people are using these sites. Wow! I better step it up a notch.

    • Hi Thara, even just a couple hours spent on various social media sites a week will make a difference in getting the word out about your products and your company. Remember to switch it up and include some fun/interesting articles, pictures and videos as well.

  • This is a great article Silke, easy to read and easy to understand. I like that you broke it down for the big social media players. Thank you this will help me a lot!

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