Like anyone else, I find myself reflecting on the past 12 months this time of year, along with looking ahead to 2013. We as individuals and business owners make plans, set goals and think a lot about what we’ll keep doing in the new year and what we’ll change. If I had my druthers, these 5 social media practices would never be seen again starting January 1.

5 Social Media “No-Nos” to Stop Doing in 2013

1. Excessive Use of “Also Send Email to your Circles” Feature Google Plus makes it easy for you to send an email to everyone in your Circles as a way to notify them of your new update. This option should only be checked for special reasons, however. A new product release, a new store opening, a webinar or other special event – all valid reasons to notify all of your contacts.

Overuse of this feature will annoy your contacts and potentially get you muted. Be sure to “notify” wisely.

notify-google-plus-circles

2. Repinning Without Checking your Pin Source From the potential for copyright infringement to straight-up looking foolish, it’s vital to always, ALWAYS check the source of the pin you are about to repin. Links may be expired (which often happens in retail), they may lead to a site that has nothing to do with the image of the pin, or you may receive a warning that looks like this:

suspicious-link-on-pinterest

I pin regularly for clients, and it’s very common that I find only 2 or 3 “good” pins that are safe to repin out of every 10-12 that I check.

3. Tweeting a Link at People You Don’t Know You might have good teaser text in your tweet (including, but not limited, to asking for my opinion of what’s behind your bit.ly link), but if I don’t know you at all and we aren’t connected on Twitter or any other social platform, your behavior is a form of spam and could get you blocked.

4. Running Facebook Contests that are in Violation of its TOS This is frustrating on many levels. Including the fact that Facebook has promotion rules but doesn’t (seem to) enforce them. In short, if you are running a contest in a status update, you’re doing it wrong. You also need to be including wording that releases Facebook of any liability. “‘Like & Share’ for a chance to win!” posted in a status update is not legit. “Be our 5,000th fan and you’ll get an iPad!” posted in a status update is not legit. “The first 3 people to comment with the correct answer get a $25 giftcard!” posted in a status update is not legit. Sure, this generates tons of buzz and causes engagement rates to skyrocket, but it is in blatant violation to Facebook’s promotion terms.

5. Spamming Fan Pages with your URLs We asked our Facebook fans what their social media pet peeves were, and along with the unhappiness over auto DMs and “vague booking”, Meagan Paullin and Cynthia Rosenfeld hit on this more recent phenomenon. Spamming fan pages with your URL works something like this: Posting “Hey! Come visit my page. Here’s the link.” on several random fan page walls or messaging that to random pages. If you have no relationship with the page and have never interacted there, it is usually not welcome to post your link and run.

These 5 social media pet peeves are all issues that are bothersome to me. I’m sure you have your own list of “no-nos”, so sound off! What social media behaviors would you like to see disappear come 2013?

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