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Top 10 Things You Should Never Share On Social Media
Social media has made it possible to share your thoughts and ideas with
thousands of virtual strangers, literally within seconds. You barely need
to have formed a cohesive thought, and BOOM! There it is, posted for
the world to see.
But before you hit that ‘publish’ button, do me a favor: run through this
list of the top 10 things you should never post on social media. It just
may save you from causing hurt or embarrassment to yourself or others!
1. OFFENSIVE CONTENT ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Where do I start? There are so many types of
posts that fall into this category. Racial slurs,
graphic images, crude jokes, swearing (except in
the rare event this is an integral part of your brand),
to name just a few.
Some business owners don’t think it’s a big deal to occasionally post a
distasteful joke or questionable picture; I strongly disagree. This lack of
awareness and respect can cause irreparable harm to your brand. When in
doubt, leave it out!
2. GOSSIP OR ATTACKS AGAINST
If you’ve been hurt or harmed in some way, you may feel justified in lashing
out on social media. However, there are two big problems with this: First,
when you specifically call someone out in such a public venue, you often
leave that relationship in a state of disrepair. It’s pretty hard to recover from
that type of attack!
3. CLAIMING OTHER PEOPLE’S CONTENT
AS YOUR OWN
Any time you use someone else’s content
without attribution – images, quotes, or original
ideas – you run some pretty serious risks.
Remember that copyright infringement is a
serious offence that can lead to legal action, and
that can do serious damage to your brand. While
you may get away with it in the short term, it’s
just not worth it!
4. SPEAKING NEGATIVELY ABOUT
Social media isn’t the place to air grievances
against employees or co-workers. It also isn’t
the place to give specific details about
mistakes your employees have made, or
about how insufferable your boss is.
Sharing this type of content on social media
is not only unprofessional, in rare
circumstances it can be grounds for legal
5. SHARING SPECIFICS ABOUT AN
UPCOMING HOLIDAY OR BUSINESS TRIP
Sharing images or videos from a trip is great for helping your followers feel
like they’re in on the action.
The trouble is, you don’t know exactly
who’s listening in! Avoid mentioning
specific details about your trip (dates,
locations, etc.). Better yet, share
pictures once you’re back!
6. PRIVATE CONVERSATIONS
Have you ever received an email or private message
from a follower that you couldn’t wait to share with
your audience? Maybe it was an awesome tip or
trick, or maybe it was a shining testimonial about
It’s always a good idea to ask for permission before
sharing this type of content on social media. If
you’re going to be sharing a screenshot or any
identifying information, you DEFINITELY need to
get written permission first!
7. TOO MUCH PERSONAL INFORMATION
You know I talk a lot about being yourself on
social media. This mean being authentic, and
letting your followers see the real YOU.
This doesn’t mean, however, that you should
let it all ‘hang out’! Make sure you have a
good balance of informative, industry-
specific content, mixed with some personal
tidbits to let your followers know you’re a
8. FINANCIAL INFORMATION
Obviously, you never want to share
sensitive financial information like
your bank account or credit card
numbers (!). But I also discourage
business owners from sharing info
like financial projections, quotas or
While this can be acceptable in certain
industries (e.g., online marketers often
share monthly income reports), this
isn’t the norm in most industries.
9. SHARING POSTS OR LINKS THAT
Before sharing a post or article that
could be controversial or sensational,
always be sure to do your homework.
Sharing posts that end up being scams
(or that are simply inaccurate) can send
the message that you’re naïve or that
you don’t care enough to fact-check.
And it goes without saying: before
sharing ANY link, be sure to click on it
10. ANYTHING YOU DON’T WANT TO
BE ONLINE FOREVER
When you put something on social
media, you have to assume it’s out
there permanently. In the age of
screenshots, there is no ‘taking it back’,
even if you’ve made a big mistake.
Before you post anything remotely
personal or sensitive, ask yourself, “Do
I want this to be online forever?” If the
answer is no, don’t hit the ‘post’
What would you add to this list?
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