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#Confused – A Simple Social Media Glossary

Harassed by hashtags and tormented by tags? Fear not, this straightforward Social Media Glossary will explain everything simply, without the jargon.

Social Media GlossarySocial media – often viewed as a minefield of acronyms, symbols and weirdly spelled words that only the youngest generation can understand.

Unfortunately, if you want to promote your brand and business successfully online, you need social media.

Whether you’re active on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, knowing your hashtag from your handle would be useful.

So following on from our SEO Glossary, we are continuing our mission to cut through all of the techie jargon with a Social Media Glossary.


Short for biography, a bio is a short description about an individual or company that shows people viewing that profile that they’ve found the right one. Make sure it’s simple but informative and consider including your website or telephone number so that people can find out more information immediately.


A connection is the LinkedIn term for a ‘friend’, but it’s more like an associate, because on LinkedIn you connect with colleagues and those you’ve done business with, but not necessarily actual friends.


On Twitter, people can share interesting, relevant or funny tweets from other people with their followers by retweeting it.


Similar to a Facebook ‘like’, a favorite on Twitter shows approval or acknowledgement of a tweet. It can also be used to save a tweet if it has something of interest you would like to refer back to later, as you can access it from your Favorites list.

DM (Direct Message)

Used across the social media channels, a DM (also used as a verb) is a message that is private, sent directly to the person into their Facebook or Twitter inbox. On Twitter, you can only DM someone who is already following you.


The official Twitter or Instagram account of a person, brand, company etc. preceded by the ‘@’ symbol. For example, the Yell Business handle on Twitter and Instagram is @yellbusiness. It is the handle that you use to ‘tag’ someone in a post if you want to send them a message, or mention them.


A way of letting someone know that you’re posting something, either because they might be interested in what you’re saying, or they’re connected to the photo or information that you’re posting. To tag someone on Twitter or Instagram, use their ‘@ handle’ and on Facebook or LinkedIn type their name preceded with the ‘@’ symbol.


A geographical tag that references the location of a photo or post, e.g. if your company is attending an event, you could add the geotag to enhance any pictures or information that you post, and other people posting or browsing images taken at that location can see them.


Used on multiple social media channels including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, a hashtag refers to the ‘#’ symbol. It is used to reference key words or phrases that there is conversation around, or may be ‘trending’ – e.g. #SmallBizTips and helps people to search for relevant subjects or interests quickly.


The most popular stories and phrases of the day on social media channels are usually displayed on the side of the page. Often these ‘trends’ may be completely irrelevant, announcing the fictional death of a celebrity or the anniversary of an X-Factor runner up’s album etc. but they also include breaking news and interesting stories.

#FF (Follow Friday)

A form of community, each Friday people and companies recommend one or more Twitter accounts that they think their followers would also be interested in.


Not to be recommended, newsjacking is a technique of using a currently trending hashtag or topic to try and get more visibility for their own message. This can often backfire and American Apparel and Gap were forced to apologise after using Hurricane Sandy to try and encourage shopping.


A way to find out your social standing, a Klout score is marked out of 100 and looks at your influence across the various social networks. The higher your score, the more social ‘klout’ you have.


Popular with teenagers and Oscar winners, a selfie is a photo of you, taken by you. Some companies embrace them… others don’t. But if you do post one, don’t forget to tag it #selfie.

[bctt tweet=”#Confused? Read through our Social Media Glossary to make things clearer”]

Still confused by social media jargon? Let us know and we’ll add it to the list!

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