Last week I did a post on how to use your social media platforms in writerly ways. This post is on some general mistakes to avoid making so that you can look more experienced from the beginning.
A Million Hashtags
This could just be me, because I’ve seen professionals make this mistake. But why in heaven’s name would you want fifteen hashtags that are really just all variations of each other? Why?! Don’t do that. It gets really annoying and clutters up the look of your posts. Pick some main ones like #writersofinstagram #amwriting and #writerslife. It’s not a bad idea to have a unique hashtag for you as well, so that people will find more of you if they click on a hashtag. #teenauthorsjournal or #taj for example 🙂
Different Profile Pics
It can be really hard to tell if you’ve found the same person on a different social media site if there is a different picture for every profile! Having a different picture of you on your blog, in your newsletter, or in your posts? That’s fine! No one finds you through those. Sticking to a single profile picture (and not changing it every week) will help people find you in other places, sometimes on accident. Trust me on this one 😉
Ah, why would you do this? It’s a cheap way to try and come across authentic and it … really fails. It’s so fake. I see this mainly on Twitter. The auto Direct Messages that thank people for following them and link to a FREE product! Yeah, I’m not buying it. The auto tweets that thank everyone each and every person who has retweeted them lately. You’re … welcome? Why don’t you thank me in person on my retweet or not at all. No one else wants to read through the list of those. Be genuine or don’t be there at all.
Selling Yourself in Every Post
I definitely have to be careful about this. There’s a fine line between being smart and stupid about how much of your merchandise, services, or whatever it may be that you share. Linking to things is okay, but it’s better when that generates an image, like on Facebook. A plain link in every post is not appealing. You should always be on social media enough that you have some personal “normal” posts about what’s new between every post that requires you to share a link. Otherwise it looks like you’re in it for yourself and not to make real friends. It’s tricky, because both are true.
Blech. Trust me, I have strong beliefs. I align myself with a specific train of thought in religion, politics, morality … I know what I stand for and I’m not afraid to stick my ground. But social media is not the place to get into an argument about the current President’s latest decision. Because it always becomes an argument and no one looks like a kind and intelligent person responding to a gazillion comments and talking in circles. There’s a time and place for that, but that’s on an individual, face-to-face basis. No one ever changed another person’s mind on Facebook. I really can’t stand loudmouths, even if I agree with what they’re shouting. I’d rather see what you had for dinner and that’s saying something 😉
Here are somethings I think it would be wise to do on all your social media:
- link to your website
- make your bios similar
- be genuine
- engage people
- use quality photos
- be concise
What are some social media pet peeves of yours? What attracts you to the accounts you follow on social media? How’s Camp NaNo going?