Poll: Ettiquette and Social Media Growth

One of the most rewarding parts of participating in social media is seeing your following grow. It's validating, it's exciting and it's excellent motivation to keep sharing, blogging and tweeting. You start to think to yourself, wow, I can't believe all these people want to see what I have to say, to know what I'm doing and follow my posts! So when dozens, hundreds or thousands of people are tuned into your tweets, Instagrams, Facebook updates, etc. – should you care more about what exactly you say?

This got me to thinking: Do I need to think a little more carefully before I tweet? And never mind me, what about the people with more than 18,000 twitter followers like Jennine? I asked her about it, and we were sort of torn. People start to follow you because they like who you are and what you say, and if you start to modify or censor that, are you defeating the purpose? Even if you're not at those kinds of numbers (and few of us are) what happens when you hit 1,000? 3,000?

On the other hand, with so many people watching you, do you have a bit of a reputation to uphold? With a large following, you run the risk of embarrassing yourself, offending someone, offending thousands, alienating hundreds or worse yet, boring thousands of people with just a few sentences. After all, you never know who might retweet you…

What I want to know is, are there responsibilities and etiquette that come with a growing social media following? Do you think that as your reach expands, you should be more mindful of what you say, who you say it to and when you say it? Vote in our poll and leave your comments below!

[poll id=”7″]


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21 Responses

  1. Samantha

    I do tweet the occasional swear word but never just for it’s own sake. I don’t think I’d stop doing that just because I got more followers, but I am generally mindful of my tweets and FB posts anyway. I try to stay appropriate…and if I wouldn’t say it out loud to a room full of people I don’t tweet it! I find that to be a good rule for me

  2. Palepepper

    i rarely curse out loud (to the point where when people who know me laugh when i do swear!) so in turn i would rarely curse on any social media outlet. With that said, i think that it really matters per person and also what is being said.

  3. TheStyleKaleidoscope

    I love this post as I guess the answer depends on what you’re blogging about and your own culture and where you come from, how old you are etc.
    For me, it’s of vital importance to say what you want. I’m 31, so I’m hardly bothered about what other people think of me anymore. And in the world of blogging I’m practically collecting my pension by now 😉
    If you post with caution because you’re scared of losing followers, or you’re worried about what people will think of you, then you’re just a politically correct voice with zero self expression or opinions. You’re a human being so let it out!
    I love being sarcastic and funny on twitter – life is way too short to worry about losing a follower on there through a post that they don’t like, and my big mouth hasn’t stopped me from getting anywhere; in fact it’s what opens the doors for me in the first place. If a brand doesn’t like me because of it, then I wouldn’t want to work with them, anyway. I’d rather give up blogging altogether than censor myself. x

  4. Glitters

    I don’t necessarily think your writing style should change. That’s why the audience like and follow you. But quite naturally as you become more experienced, your writing style may change.

  5. Laura

    If people are following your twitter account because they like you and your tweets why should you change the style with which you tweet just because their are suddenly a lot of people who are interested in what you have to say. I follow many bloggers who used to tweet lots of cute little insights into their life and when they suddenly become ‘blogger famous’ they stopped tweeting as much AND they stopped tweeting in a way that sounded like how they used to, now I’ve unfollowed a lot of these people because I don’t ebjoy following them anymore

  6. Karen Millen

    I try to stay appropriate…and if I wouldn’t say it out loud to a room full of people I don’t tweet it! I find that to be a good rule for me or you’re worried about what people will think of you, then you’re just a politically correct voice with zero self expression or opinions.

  7. Elisa

    I don’t think you should change the way you speak (and maybe occasionally swear) just because your following count increases. people follow you because they like what you write and the way you write it. if you change that then the whole reason behind them following is there anymore. I swear occasionally on twitter, but it’s part of me and my personality and I guess I take the view that if you like me the way I am then good but I’m not changing for anyone 🙂

  8. Tors

    I think you should be mindful of what you post on social media from day one, give it as much of your personality as possible but be aware of the impact your words can have, regardless of how many readers you have following you. That way you’ll never have to change your style or tone and you possibly won’t look back in a couple of years and regret something stupid.

  9. LaurenF

    I don’t swear on my blog or on social media, but I rarely feel the need to either. I just don’t feel like it matches the content of my blog. I’m also mindful of what I do and say online because of my day job; I’m a teacher, and things I do online could come back to haunt me. I do swear in real life (I don’t know many teachers who don’t!), but I’m careful about when, where, and around whom I do it.

  10. Bric et Broc

    I only have a few followers so it is the first time I ask myself those questions.
    But I think that you should always take care about what you write, even your first tweet ! I don’t see the point of writing things that may offend or alienate someone, it’s more about respect no matter how much people are following you …

    I don’t swear on twitter, while I swear a lot in real life (but I’m french, it’s part of our language ^^), maybe because I’m not a twitter addict and don’t tweet all day long about my activities.

    For the boring part, well if people think that what you write is boring they wouldn’t have followed you ! So no, I think you shouldn’t change for this reason. 🙂

    Sorry for my english, hope you’ll have understood what I mean !!

  11. Ana

    This is a tricky question to answer because: yes, I think you should be mindful of what you post on social media (for various reasons), but no, I don’t think that the mindfulness should be dependent on the growth of your following.

    I don’t know how to vote.

  12. Cate Young (@promiscuouslola)

    I don’t think you should change your methods as your audience grows. They’re coming to see you after all. And nothing stops them from unfollowing if they decide they no longer agree with you. My blog’s twitter is also my personal twitter and I tweet not just about fashion, but about social and political issues that I find relevenat. I can’t expect everyone to have the same views as me, but I’m not going to change them to allay the fears of people I don’t even know.


    Of course it depends on the type of blog that you’re running and the goals that you’ve set… But I would never betray my voice, even if staying true to myself constitutes a smaller following.

  14. Emmy

    I think there should always be a certain rule when it comes to social media. I guess I’m just a prude so I don’t like it personally when I see cursing on tweets. If it’s a part of your personality, then I guess that’s fine. What I don’t like is when I follow a blog where the writer does not swear, then follow him/her on twitter and it’s the F this or F that every tweet. Meh!

  15. Christy Lorio

    I couldn’t agree more about not changing the way you tweet. No one wants to follow a watered down, “safe” tweeter- that’s boring. What separates us from the sea of 140 characters are the little personality quirks each of us possess. I don’t mind an occasional curse word, but dropping F bombs regularly is probably over the top.

  16. Georgina

    I think you should always be mindful of your social media presence. If you put something out on the internet, it’s in the public domain for anyone to see or use as they see fit. I was always told that you should give everything you put online the ‘mum test’. If you wouldn’t want your mum to see it, don’t put it online! It might come back to bite you.
    Whether you’ve made a snide dig at someone who then reads and realises it’s them, or a prospective employer reads your tweets about pulling sickies at your old job, social media can be a bit dangerous if you don’t think think before you tweet.
    I don’t think we have to censor ourselves, just be aware of who might be reading.

  17. Mary

    I actually had been battling with this recently. I created my blog (which I’m very dedicated to and work hard on now) a few years ago on the fly at someone’s suggestion. At that time I was already using twitter and making new friendships.

    Recently I had been going through some difficult personal issues. All of the sudden I was worried about sharing that with people on twitter because I was worried that I now had to worry about more professionals seeing things I post online since my blog’s grown.

    However I discussed this with someone and the next time I did share because I have some really good friends on there and needed the support.

    So while I think I am more behaved now online it’s only to a certain extent. If I need help I’m not going to hamper myself because it might offend a fashion division that follows me.

  18. Sharon

    I am very mindful of not only my social media image but, my professional and personal image. Which means even if I am out in public, I am going to display behavior that reflects what my brand is all about.

  19. ThatHauteDude

    I always try to be respectful in my contributions to social media. Trying to restrain anything offensive and just displaying what I am all about which is fashion and putting forward my brand.