Pins, hashtags, likes, unfriending – thanks to social media, we now have developed a completely new language to describe all of the features and tools needed to run a successful page. Do you find yourself chuckling in empathy with the little old lady who has quite literally posted actual photographs to her home’s wall? Fortunately, it’s not all that complicated once you understand the jargon.
Today, I’m going to go over all the words, phrases, and features from A to Z commonly thrown around when discussing social media, as well as how some of them in particular can help you to build your business up on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other sites. It’s a bit like learning to speak Swahili at first, but I promise you will get the hang of it.
Terms Everyone Should Know
App – Short for “application,” this term was coined when the iPhone came into existence. An app is simply a program that you can download to your phone, tablet, or PC that is designed to accomplish a particular task. It may be a game, a calculator of some sort, a code reader, or anything else you can possibly imagine that has a specific focus.
Astroturfing – This is the process of presenting a false impression that a product, service, or other entity has widespread grassroots support to cover up the real sources of the positive reviews.
Blog – A shortened form of “web log,” this is a sort of online diary or journal that contains a series of entries that appear in order from most to least recent. Blogs are often used for content marketing and may allow for readers to comment and respond to the entries.
Blogosphere – The community of people who write and read blogs.
Embedding – Embedding is the act of adding HTML code to a blog, website, or social media page that links back to content from another site. For instance, videos posted on YouTube feature code that you can copy and paste to your site to share that video directly from your web page.
Facebook – The world’s most popular social media site, Facebook allows users to create pages containing content of all types, follow other users, and have running dialogues with multiple people in one place.
Feed – A way for users to receive and view updated content as it is posted. You can subscribe to feeds for websites, blogs, news sites, and other pages that add content regularly if the site allows.
Friends – As it applies to Facebook, this refers to the people who are allowed to view, comment, and have certain communication privileges on your page. The idea is to keep Facebook a friendly place and maintain a pleasant experience for everyone.
Geotagging – Geotagging lets you add specific physical location data to photographs and videos, often in the hopes of bringing in customers who happen to be in your immediate vicinity.
Hashtag – Most commonly found in Twitter, hashtags are often used to make finding Tweets on a specific topic easier to find. For instance, a person posting a Tweet about the British Open may write their message and follow it up with “#BritishOpen2014” so that others discussing the same topic will find it in a search.
Instagram – An image-based social media sharing site. Users can post and edit pictures, add comments, and follow other Instagram users.
Likes – Commonly used in Facebook and other sites with commentary features, likes are simply a count that appears next to a comment or post as a tally of people who have had a favorable reaction to that particular piece of content.
LinkedIn – A business social networking site which allows users to post resumes, company information, look for new employees, and connect with other businesspeople.
Microblogging – Microblogging is the act of sharing information on a social media site in small, concise chunks. Twitter is the largest microblogging site.
Paid Search Marketing – This is the act of paying a search engine, such as Google, to appear near the top of the search results for a particular keyword.
Pin – A picture posted on a Pinterest page.
Pinterest – A social media site in which users maintain a page composed of a set of images that they like or wish to share.
Retweeting – Re-posting a comment made by another person on Twitter.
Search Engine Marketing – The act of raising your website’s visibility online by a combination of paid search marketing and pay-per-click ads.
SEO – SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of tailoring your website in such a way that it can easily be found by search engines and appear as close to the top of the result list for a particular keyword as possible. Common tactics include keyword inclusion, creating original content, and building backlinks.
Social Media – Videos, photographs, and text created by individuals or businesses and shared by a common platform such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Social Networking – The act of building connections on a social media website.
Splogs – Short for spam blogs, these are created by hijacking content from other writers’ works and combining them into a fake blog designed to boost SEO.
Tags – Words attached to photographs, videos, blog entries, and other online posts that are descriptive in nature and which help searchers to find relevant content.
Troll – A troll is a person who visits a blog, page, or other site and posts comments designed to disrupt or distract the ongoing conversation. They often post offensive, off-topic, or rude material.
Tweet – A post on the social media site Twitter. Tweets are limited to 140 characters or less.
Twitter – The largest microblogging social media site, Twitter is composed of users who communicate by posting tweets of 140 characters or less.
Twitterverse – A combination of “Twitter” and “universe,” the Twitterverse is the community of Twitter users.
Unfriending – Removing another user from your list of friends, particularly on Facebook. This revokes any viewing privileges they may have had on your page.
YouTube – An online video sharing community. Popular uses for businesses include sharing how-to videos, providing video tours, and giving detailed multimedia presentations in an easy-to-access format.
A Final Word
It is important to learn some of the lingo floating around to help you better communicate with others when developing your social media marketing campaigns. If you don’t take the time to understand the new dictionary, you will quickly find yourself out of the loop and getting left behind.
Of course, the best way to truly understand the terminology is to experience the various social media sites yourself. Log on, look around, create a personal page, and see what the buzz is all about.
If you find yourself connecting with a particular social media platform, consider how it might work with your business’s goals, particularly in the marketing arena. Social media provides businesses with a fast, free, and easy way to market to the masses, and it’s popularity is a huge plus. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are in the must join category, and other niche social media sites can be just as valuable.
What are you waiting for? Go get your feet wet.