Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Social Media: How to Enjoy Your Social Platforms Again



Twitter is my favourite social media platform, by far. It's very personal: you choose exactly who to follow and what sort of content you are interested in. You can pick Twitter up any time of day and find new and engaging content. I love that my feed looks different even if I refresh it 5 times in 1 minute. Twitter is the best place to expel your persistent urges to tell everybody about your day, whether they find them interesting or not. So, how can you make your Twitter experience better?

  • Twitter is NOT PERSONAL. Oh, that girl you sat next to in English in school is on Twitter? WHO GIVES A SHIT. If they aren't posting content that you are interested in then don't follow them. Twitter is essentially a newsboard with news that is completely tailored to you. I follow and unfollow new people every single day on Twitter, depending on what they're posting. It is a feed for YOU, so be selfish with it. 
  • Twitter does not facilitate comments, or "feelings" towards tweets. You are able to 'Like' tweets (Like has replaced Favourite, which always felt like too much of a commitment!) and you are obviously able to retweet other tweets. You aren't able to use those awful Facebook "Sad" or "Angry" to emote sentiment towards a tweet. Twitter is much less about 'conversation' and doesn't invite people to offer their opinions on your content. This is great if you, like me, aren't really interested in what people think about your tweets. Basically, don't be scared that you have to be funny and interesting on Twitter. You don't have to try that hard. I know loads of people that DO care what you had for breakfast this morning, myself being one of them :)



Instagram is the social media platform with the greatest 'reach per post', according to Google Analytics of my own posted content. One photo you post may be seen by hundreds or thousands of people in a very short space of time if you have been intelligent about your hashtags. This is super powerful, but also means that Instagram is the "spammiest" social media platform that I use today. I am often tagged in spam posts about free products, and I get a lot of inbox messages from random fake bot accounts.

  • The very point of Instagram, according to the guy that wrote the Instagram website, is to share your life with others by creating memories in the form of photos and videos. If your Instagram account is public then one would assume that you want your photos to be seen by people. The way to do this is by using hashtags. Hashtagging is a great way to add your photo to a stream of photos that are focused around a particular topic. I use the hashtag #ukblogger a lot; it's one of my favourites. I want to see posts by other bloggers both out of interest and for inspiration for my own blog. This tag pulls photos from other UK Bloggers, who I usually end up following. Use hashtags to add your photos to the tags that you love to browse. 
  • Be thick skinned when it comes to Instagram. There are a generation of people (likely your generation if you are reading this!) that don't really understand how much time and effort goes into promoting something you have lovingly created. You might post photos that don't get the attention that you wanted them to- perhaps they aren't as appealing as you thought? You also might get comments about your self promotion. If you want people to see your content and to click through to your profile (and hopefully your blog or website!) then you need to make sure your posts are visible to as many people as possible, and this means hashtagging the shit out of them. Don't panic about what people think of you- if you have a photo that you are proud of then why shouldn't you want people to see it?



FACEBOOK

Facebook is my least favourite social media platform because it is a breeding ground for idiots with opinions. It's fun to read, but people take themselves SO SERIOUSLY. I've seen arguments about fracking involving people who couldn't write their own name in school. There are some lovely, heartwarming aspects of Facebook: I love that my 65 year old relatives have learned to stumble around it, occasionally uploading photos and leaving awkward comments on my statuses. However, I hate that Facebook has essentially become a game. Zuckerberg has successfully managed the gamification of real life. My feed is currently comprised of Unilad memes, fail videos and content that was on Reddit 3 years ago. GAHHHH. 

  • The best way to improve your personal experience of Facebook is to delete people. DELETE DELETE DELETE. Facebook has done a very good job of becoming ingrained in our lives. 99% of the people you want to stay in touch with have Facebook which means it's a great platform for connection. The problem is that 99% of the people you never want to think about also have Facebook. There is nothing healthy about being able to check your ex boyfriends status and whereabouts every day- bite the bullet and delete the contacts that you've kept there for negative reasons.
  • Find the stalker in your friendship group. In every single group of girls there will be one that can tell you exactly how many friends you have on Facebook. She will have been through all of your photos dating back to 2006. She will be able to conjure up the profile picture of your sisters' ex boyfriend in her mind because you mentioned him once in the past 2 years. She will be the girl scared to delete anybody from Facebook in case the 'Likes' stop rolling in. Yeah, it's extreme, but I bet you can think of the person that I'm talking about. Put her on 'Limited Profile' until she gets a grip. If you've got the balls, you can download your Facebook archive (your posts, comments, and PHOTOS) and have Facebook email it to you which means, dare I say it, that you could feasibly DELETE FACEBOOK. Imagine that feeling. 


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