The term “Social Media” in the business world can either spark great ideas or make you cringe with worry. There are many companies that gain positive results by keeping up-to-date social media accounts. Active company pages are the most popular. However, social media can also be damaging in ways that you may not realize.
In a digital world, people are checking you out, both as a business and as an individual. Success and careers can be made or lost. It can be attributed to a few mistakes on Facebook, Instagram, and other social media sites. It is a hidden danger that most people fail to consider.
Whether you are a business or someone hoping to apply for a new job, you don’t want bad images of yourself online. Social media checks are taking place. What do you think your social media reveals about you?
Businesses and Social Media
Businesses gain a lot by keeping their social media pages up and running. It allows them to have free advertising. People who use their product or their service can “like” or “follow” them. Their friends see it. They can see the product or service. It can bring people who never knew about your business to your door. Then it becomes your job to convince them they can make an informed decision if they trust you.
The downside is if someone does not have a positive experience when doing business with you, it will show. If they post a comment on your social media that is negative, it could make others turn away. A post on their proﬁle telling others to avoid your product or services can destroy your online persona. Their feelings about you can encourage others to avoid doing business with you.
To counter this, you will need to stay on top of your social media proﬁles. Reply to negatives and turn them into a positive buyer’s experience. You can also express delight when people give you positive feedback.
Employees and Social Media
If you are looking for a job with a certain company, your social media account may have hidden dangers. Potential employers are looking at your social media. According to labor laws, an employer has the right to look at anything that is publicly available.
There are limits, certain aspects of your proﬁle cannot be considered because of discrimination laws. This does not include public proﬁles, comments, and photographs. They can use those items to gauge who you are as a person.
They cannot avoid hiring you based on things that may be discriminatory.
These things include:
*Religion *Race *Disabilities *Sexual Orientation *Health *Gender *Age *Genetics
A company can avoid hiring you based on your personality. If they feel that it does not meet with their company standards, you can lose the job. A public proﬁle that’s ﬁlled with racist comments or negativity about a previous employer/coworker, is bad. It can be used against you to show that you are not a good ﬁt. All it takes is for it to be publically available.
Are Your Public Proﬁles Ruining You?
In the very “public” world we live in, anything about anyone can be found online. Image searches with your name as the keyword can reveal photographs of you. Remember when you drank too much and passed out with your face in your dinner? Your future boss may see it as well. All it takes is you posting it as public or your friend tagging you.
You should think about the digital world as a “ﬁngerprint.” Once there, it is hard to completely wipe away. You can go through and set all photos to “friends only” or make them private. This may not eliminate them, but it makes them harder to use against you. You should remove tags on other photographs of you that may be posted by friends.
A harder thing to do involves deleting derogatory stuﬀ you may have posted ﬁve years ago. You could spend days searching, and it may not get rid of the problem. The most important thing you can do is think about your future. Starting today, you should avoid posting things that may be considered, “questionable.”
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