06 Aug Using Social Media Responsibly: Being Smart, Safe, and Social
You’re completely responsible for all the posts, likes, and comments on your Instagram and other social media accounts.
Disobeying policies under social media platforms can get your account suspended or banned. You can get sued or even incriminated in worst-case scenarios.
The most important thing when it comes to responsible social media use is to avoid negligence. The content, words, and actions you display on the Web can affect society, both online and offline. Negative behavior in your social media accounts can easily influence you and your followers.
Follow the Rules
Here are some of the basic rules on Instagram. Follow them to avoid IG from penalizing you and your account.
Don’t Include Banned Hashtags in Your Posts and Comments
You need to research about your hashtags first before you use them to prevent problems. You can avoid most of the banned hashtags by using common sense (as these promote racism, hate crimes, terrorism, and the like) but some of these seem harmless until you find out why Instagram banned them. Some of those hashtags are #eggplant, #adultlife, and #citycentre.
Don’t Post, Follow, or Unfollow Too Much
Don’t behave like a bot that seems online 24/7 and use Instagram like a machine. Instagram didn’t announce anything specific, but you should follow these rough guidelines.
- Don’t follow and unfollow more than 60 accounts every hour. That’s equivalent to one account per minute.
- Don’t like more than 300 posts per hour. That’s equivalent to five likes per minute.
- Don’t post more than 60 comments per hour. That’s equivalent to one comment per minute.
Also, don’t be negligent about using third-party applications if you’re using a business account.
Don’t Simply Repost or Use Another Person’s Picture
Get permission from the user first. Attribute that picture to him/her. And use hashtags — such as #repost and #regram — to inform your followers and viewers that another user owns the content.
Also, add the necessary context about why you shared the content. Include your own insight to make your post fresh, different, and unique.
Don’t Just Start Contests
Be aware that the government has rules when it comes to promotions and contests. Make sure that you follow those rules and guidelines to prevent legal issues.
Be Responsible and Effective
Here are four simple guidelines on how to run your social media account responsibly and effectively.
- Never ignore your followers and other people’s comments.
- Establish a posting schedule and stick to it.
- Create a theme in your posts.
- Interact like a regular human being.
Handle Negative Comments Properly
You should always reply to and deal with complaints and negative comments. Let only one person handle these negative comments if you have a team. This is to prevent inconsistencies in your account’s replies.
Your replies should be sent within 15 minutes to an hour after the complainant or detractor posts the comment. Your response should always show that you’re polite and calm, regardless if the negative comment was from an Internet troll or an actual person.
Always thank the commenter for raising his/her concern and letting you know about his/her feelings and opinions. Don’t make excuses, especially if it’s true that it was your fault. Issue the needed apology.
It’s fine to be witty with your reply, but make sure it won’t be offensive. Also, do not use your wit to beat around the bush or attack in a passive-aggressive manner. Always, deal with the comment in a direct and professional way.
Provide clear and concise explanations. Tell them the actions you will take to solve the problem. Make sure that you do it. Provide them precise details about when you’re going to get back to them if you need to.
Use complaints and negative comments as opportunities. Encourage the commenter to message you directly via private messages if the conversation will be a long one. Provide incentives for people who voice out valid complaints.
Never remove any negative comment. If the comment or the commenter is blatantly attacking or trolling you and is clearly violating Instagram’s community guidelines, report the comment. Follow the steps below to report a comment:
- Click/Slide/Tap and Hold (for PC/iPhone/Android phone) on the comment.
- Click/Tap on the Spam or Scam button, whichever is appropriate.
- Select the option appropriate for the reason why you deem the comment must be reported.