Love it or hate it, social media is gradually becoming a fundamental part of our daily routine. You may be addicted to your social networks or have a cooler approach and use it informatively, but whatever your social engagement, use it wisely and social media can have a huge impact on your learning and engagement with others.
Thursday 30th June is Social Media Day, so here’s a low down on our favourite platforms and how you can use them effectively.
Instagram is an image led social platform, which allows you to post and share with others whilst expressing your creative side.
Designed as a photo sharing platform for both professional photographers and those who simply have a passion for photography, Instagram is here for the long run.
It’s hard to believe that it was only released in 2010 as we’ve been inspired to snap ever since!
The platform has developed a huge range of users allowing you to build your own network of interesting topics.
The one element that defines Instagram from other image sharing platforms is the simplicity of its functionality. The interaction of an extensive audience connecting through the same tool is what makes Instagram great, so learn from it and have fun with it!
Facebook allows you to share information such as photos, links and videos with your friends. The great advantage of Facebook, is that you can control how much you share with your friends and in return you can see their updates.
You can also ask questions through Facebook, share opinions and keep in touch with family, friends and colleagues. You can also catch up with your friends by chatting to them via livechat. Many organisations use Facebook as a business tool to promote offers and competitions, keep fans up to date and review their competitors.
Facebook is the biggest social platform with the largest number of users, so if you are thinking about getting in touch with an old colleague or school friend, the likelihood is that they will have a Facebook account.
Pinterest is a visual discovery tool that can be used to find ideas for projects, interests and hobbies. Discover some fantastic ideas and some amazing imagery – it’s surprising how informative pinning can be!
Think of Pinterest as your online mood board, all your thoughts, ideas, inspirations, quotes, recipes gathered together with a big dollop of creativity. You can even download the ‘Pin It’ button and pin interesting articles found on the web to revisit them at a later date.
Another great reason to use Pinterest is that you can integrate it with your other platforms such as; Twitter or Facebook and share your creative boards with your friends and followers.
It’s best to decide on a theme such as: corporate, personal or creative to allow you to gather as many ‘pins’ as possible but whatever your style, Pinterest is adaptable to suit everyone.
Twitter is a social networking platform where you can share short 140 character ‘tweets’. It can provide you with exceptional content from the latest news to ‘trends’ and ‘hashtags’. Twitter is fast and informative for example, the BBC News Twitter page post tweets every hour to keep you up to date with the latest stories.
Twitter allows you to read the latest news articles, explore creative imagery and keep up to date with trends along with a splash of witty humour thrown in for good measure.
If this sounds like something you’re looking for, then Twitter is the platform for you!
LinkedIn is a professional network catering to the business community. It allows you the opportunity to ‘show off’ projects and work you’ve completed, whilst engaging with other users.
LinkedIn gives you the chance to endorse and encourage others by acknowledging their skills and abilities, and in return, you let them do the same for you.
LinkedIn is a fantastic platform if you are looking for a new career as it will keep you aware of job opportunities in the pipeline.
It also allows you to join groups and follow companies/organisations to keep up to date with the latest industry news. Read interesting articles and advice from industry experts via LinkedIn pulse, (its own version of blogging) and you can even contribute by writing you own ‘pulse’, if you so desire.
There are great benefits to investing in social media, so we suggest you explore each platform and work out which ones would work best for you.
After all, we can’t escape the power of social media and the fantastic opportunity it provides to communicate with the outside world. So, if you can’t beat them… join them!