Whether you are run your own small-business accounts or manage communications for a fortune 500 company, it’s easy to become overwhelmed when planning out your social media content timeline. With that in mind, I have created a shortlist of things to keep in mind while creating social media content to promote accessibility and inclusivity in an online space.
As social media platforms continue to adapt, new features are being added or tweaked to ultimately improve the user experience. As we continue to make strides in the world of inclusivity, we can’t forget about online inclusivity. While the average social media user does not require inclusive technology (text-to-speech, alternative text, closed captioning, etc.) we as social media professionals need to be mindful of these limitations and ensure that our content is accessible to all users, not just certain users.
While not always applicable in social media posts, asking for someone’s preferred pronouns is a great way to promote an inclusive environment. We have recently added a space for students to provide their preferred pronouns on their biography form to ensure we are using their preferred pronouns rather than what is listed in the student information system or assumptions based on their physical appearance. Taking small steps like this can potentially lead to an increased connection to your brand or mission as they feel represented and valued members of your community.
Does anyone else remember when this was called a pound sign? Hashtags can be used to join an online conversation, contribute to an ongoing campaign, or even brand your wedding day. No matter how you are using them in your content, be sure you are using #CamelCase in your posts. This not only allows screen-reading software to differentiate each word but also increases the likelihood that your audience will read notice the hashtag as they quickly scroll through their newsfeed.
It’s okay to pause
This is super important especially now that we rely on digital communications more than ever. I am not here to tell you that your new product launch is going to flop or your latest blog post isn’t going to get the recognition that it deserves but sometimes you just need to hit pause especially in times of natural disasters, breaking news, or live broadcasts. Some events are going to pop-up without any warning while others we can plan for but being aware of what is happening offline, may actually help your overall online performance.
Author: Bryson Purcell has been a NISM Certified Social Media Strategist since 2019 and currently works in higher education enrollment. Connect with Bryson on LinkedIn, Twitter or his personal website.