There’s No Second Chance to Make a First Impression on Social Media

Are you making a first great impression on your social media networks? The old adage that you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression is true. It’s sad when you go to someone’s account on Twitter, for example, and see a couple of tweets and then nothing. Or there is a big fat egg where the person’s image should be.

Update Your Profiles

Maybe it’s time for you to get your social media networks updated so that you make a great first impression.

  1. Include a photo of yourself.  It doesn’t need to be taken by a professional, as long as it’s professional looking. Once you pick a photo, go to Gravatar where you can upload your image so that it follows you from site to site appearing beside your name when you comment or post on a blog.
  2. Refresh the background of your Twitter page. Instead of using the selections from Twitter’s limited selections, you can go to sites like twittergallery.com for dozens of free templates.
  3. Fill out your profile. This is especially important on LinkedIn, one of the first stops for employers and business prospects. Make sure it’s complete and update it when there are changes in your life, such as a new job.
  4. Post regularly to your sites. Set a goal: I will tweet, share an update on LinkedIn and post to Facebook at least X times a week. The posts don’t need to be original – you can tweet a newspaper article you like, retweet other people’s tweets and include links to articles.
  5. Respond to mentions of your name and content. If someone leaves a comment for a question you posed in a LinkedIn Group, be sure to respond. It’s only polite and will keep the discussion going. Same goes for the other networks like Google+ and Facebook.
  6. Make it easy to comment. If you have a blog, make it easy for people to comment and provide a link back to their website. I hate captcha which requires you to decipher unreadable letters and numbers to confirm you’re not a spammer. I never get it right the first time. How about just a box to check that you are a real human?

It will enhance your brand if you post content that offers value to your business readers. Don’t tweet anything that you will be embarrassed by later.

Also, no one wants to know what you ate for lunch. And this goes for friends and business associates. Honestly.

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Comments

  1. Agree with and subscribe to all you suggest.

    I’m wondering WHY some of my business tribe responds with more energy to my personal posts, example, if I post about my mom, or my husband and my interest in cars.

    What do you think?

    • Pat — that’s a good question. I don’t know. It could be the tribe you belong to –although you say the focus of the tribe is business. Beats me!

  2. Cheryl – you can also design a custom Twitter background but I haven’t gotten that far yet and not sure it’s entirely necessary. There are plenty of attractive templates available.

  3. Great post, Jeannette.

    I, too, hate those “captcha” verifications on some blogs. What a nuisance!

    And it amazes me when people still use the egg as their pic on any site. Social media is all about forming and nurturing relationships. It’s hard to form a relationship with an egg!

    Or how about those people who “protect” their tweets! What’s up with that? Really defeats the purpose of “social media.” Cheers!

    • Doreen — my webmaster is now starting to install a new verification plugin on some of his clients’ websites where you’re required to add two simple numbers, i.e., 1 + 1 equals 2 instead of captcha or a check box if you’re human. I agree about people who “protect” their tweets. Seems odd and I don’t understand it. If someone follows you that you feel posts offensive content you can just block them. Why create hurdles for the good guys?

  4. Agree with you completely that you have one chance to make an impression on social media.

    What you suggest to do is also important.

    However, I do believe the way you communicate and how you treat other members of social media is as important, if not more important.

    • Catarina — I agree that after you make a first impression you need to continue to reinforce why people “liked” you or followed you. Respectring others, on social media and in life, is so important. Thanks for making that point.

      • Jeannette there are a lot of things you can do in real life but not on social media.

        If an artsy fartsy person makes a crude joke in real life it can be really amusing. But it certainly isn’t when it’s a stranger on social media. Happened to me recenty and believe me, I will never have anything to do with that person again. There is no way of changing my impression.:-)

  5. I recently changed my the background of my Twitter profile to the cover of my short stories. I’ve seen lots of writers do so, and I guess anything that helps make a better first impression can only help. Though I wonder it using one’s book cover as wallpaper might not also scream notice me a bit too much… 😉

    • Jeri — I just went and looked at your Twitter background. It’s very dramatic and impactful. I like it and your Twitter background is supposed to make you stand out from the crowd.