There’s that urban saying that everyone likes to use when they have a night of debauchery or they go away for a naughty weekend – “What happens in xxx, stays in xxx”
Well, if only that were the case when it comes to online posts. If you haven’t figured out by now, what goes online, stays online. Sure, you can delete a post, most times, but by the time you do, it has generally been seen by at least a few hundred people, and if they shared it, well then another couple of hundred become privy to it too.
When it comes to business posting, no matter whether it is on LinkedIn, Facebook, or a blog you have linked to your website, it is even more paramount that you be very sure of what you are posting.
Just recently, a certain political leader posted something on Twitter that landed her in hot water. While she may be quite the public figure, it only takes a few seconds to tarnish your name and reputation.
Here are a few tips to make sure you think twice, make that five times, before willy-nilly posting on social media and other public platforms.
- Everyone is Online
Don’t kid yourself that certain people aren’t online. Don’t think that the company CEO who just interviewed you isn’t checking out what you’re doing and saying on Facebook. A sure-fire way to get into the real person you are about to hire is to see what they post on social media. On the flipside, much can be read into what you don’t post. And by that I mean if you don’t mention family at all, never say a good word about anyone or anything, chances are you are not a very nice person. And, contrary to what that CEO may say, he is as concerned about your ethics as he is about your credentials. Keep it clean, people!
- Comments Count
Just like your mother told you when you were younger, “Don’t burn any bridges – you never know when you may need that person.” And, in addition, if you intend to comment on a post, make sure you mean what you say, and more importantly, how it will affect the person it is directed at. Remember, that anyone else that decides to view the comments or has previously commented on that post, will see your comment too. Be nice!
- An Image Speaks a Thousand Words
Social media is greatly about the visual effect, and images make great advertising. We are very visual creatures. So, if you decide to post that selfie of you and the company secretary tipping wine glasses (albeit to celebrate the closing of a deal) be aware that many may construe the image differently to what you intended.
- Positive is Power
If you aren’t going to say anything nice, then rather don’t say it at all. Just like what you say verbally can make a difference to how you are perceived and received, so can what you post. Keep it positive!
- Your Opinion means nothing
Yes, social media posts are full of opinions, but therein lays the problem. If your opinion was wanted, then someone would have asked you for it. And, even then, if you see a brightly lit up pink post asking you how you feel about religion, ignore it. Unless you intend to start up a new church or even if you feel very strongly about your faith, it is best to keep that off of social media. We are not saying that believing in something is wrong, but for the purposes of business, it is best to steer clear from the trio, being religion, politics and sex.
- Ask yourself these questions before posting
Is it true?
Is it kind?
Is it necessary?
If your post doesn’t cover all three of these, then don’t post it.