Social Media Glossary


Twitter – Everyday and conversational terms on Twitter.

Tweet – a message (max length of 140 characters) sent via Twitter

Tweeter – Somebody who uses Twitter

@username – The name that you choose to represent yourself on twitter, this is shown at the beginning of all your tweets and starts with the @ sign.

Handle – the @username is also sometimes referred to as your Twitter ‘handle’ – (an old CB radio term!).

Micro Blog – Tweeting is sometimes referred to as micro blogging as you are effectively writing a 140 character mini blog

Follower – Another person on Twitter who is interested in watching/listening  and ‘following’ what you tweet so they ‘follow’ your tweets from their account and automatically see your Twitter updates

Following – This is when you are interested in following someone else on Twitter and want to automatically see their Twitter updates.

Targeted Followers – Targeting the people who listen to your tweets for a purpose and following people that you want to follow you back,

Mentions – This is how you can tell if somebody has directly tweeted you, therefore writing @(your username) infront of their tweet so that you can pick up their message under your mentions. (Mentions are recorded in a number of Twitter management platforms).

Retweet (RT) – a Retweet is used to repeat a specific tweet, it can be used to reiterate what somebody else has said in agreement or it may be used to show all your followers a tweet that you are replying to.

Tactical Retweets – Retweeting the tweet of somebody who you want to notice you and follow you back or retweet your tweets

Hashtag – This # can be used to categorise your tweet to a particular topic. People who then search in Twitter for the topic that you are referring to, will see your tweet. For example, if I were to tweet about this glossary I could hashtag the tweet #twittertips.  See here for more on Hashtags and Leveraging them.

Twitter Chat - This is where a group of users on Twitter connect and converse not by following one another, but by following a # around a conversation - eg: #blogchat #usguys - these are ongoing conversations - often held at a specific date and time each week / month

Trends – This term describes the different subject and topic categories being tweeted about and then being categorised by the hashtag (#) For example, this glossary would appear in the trend  #twittertips because that’s the subject I have categorised (hashtagged) it to in my tweet.

D (direct message) – This is a way of privately messaging somebody who is following you on Twitter. This is a way of keeping the content of your message private from the rest of Twitter – it can be only sent to somebody who is following you.  To do this you would put d (not DM) infront of their Twitter name  -eg:  d @michellecarvill  Using social dashboards such as Hootsuite enables you to send a direct message as one of the standard message features.

Social Dashboard - A dashboard where you bring in all your Twitter feeds into one central place so that you can manage multiple accounts more effectively. Common dashboards include 

Tiny URL – This is the name of one website that shortens your URL for you so you don’t take up too many of your 140 characters with a link –  There are others too such as; – and in Twitter management platforms, such as Tweetdeck, Hootsuite, CoTweet – they have their own URL shortening programs or use the more common ones.

Locking Your Profile – You can lock your Twitter profile so that only people who you allow to follow you will see your Twitter updates.

Twitter Lists - You can sort your followers into segments by creating lists so that you can better organise your Twitter thread. See here for how to create and manage Twitter lists.

Klout - Your Klout score demonstrates how your influence is measured on Twitter. It starts at zero but the more people who tweet you, share your tweets on and retweet you etc. The more your klout grows. Klout is deemed by some as an unfair measure of reach and engagement on Twitter as it only measures basic sharing - therefore fluctuations in Klout scores are often not focused on too heavily.



Glossary of terms used to talk about and on Facebook.

Facebook Personal Timeline - Your timeline respresents you personally and not a business, it is your own personal profile that people can become friends with in order to see a 'timeline' of your activity, photos and wall posts since you joined Facebook. It is a way to share information about yourself with others in order to socialise and network.

Friends – Other people on Facebook who want to link themselves to your profile and follow your activity

Notifications – Facebook notifies you with optional messages that let you know if any activity has occurred on your facebook.

Tagging – This is when you are mentioned in a status update or identified in a picture which you are usually in, you are notified of this allocation.

Stream – This is where all activity is logged instantaneously from your friend’s personal profiles, business pages and groups you have liked. It is a way to keep up to date with everything that is going on within Facebook at all times.

Business Timleline/ Business Page – A business timleine is NOT a profile. This is a way to promote a business/brand or band (not an individual) on Facebook through your personal profile. You cannot become friends with a Business Timeline you can only ‘Like’ it.

Like – If you ‘like’ something on Facebook it means that you approve of whatever is being represented, promoted, shown or discussed. You can like videos, statuses, business pages, people, photos, groups and discussions.

Wall – This appears within your Facebook timeline. It’s a space that allows other people on Facebook to post messages to you that everybody can see.

Poke – If you poke somebody on Facebook you are interacting with them, you are virtually ‘poking’ them. It’s as simple as that.

Status Update - This is described by Facebook as the way you can 'give positive feedback and connect with the things you care about'. Status's contain information that you wish to share with people connected to your Timeline - personal or business related. The status may contain a picture, link or video.

Group – This is created usually by bands, companies, organisations and individuals to drum up support or to promote something. Again you can ‘like’ a group and/or become a member of that group.

Network – A group of people who have joined together on Facebook who have something in common, usually a business, school or university network.

Friends Lists / Smart Lists / Close Friends –  A way of organising your 'friends' into lists giving you options as to who sees what.

Edgerank –  Edgerank is an algorithm developed by Facebook to govern what is displayed (and how high) on the News Feed. (Probably one of the best insights to Edgerank here)

Insights  – Analytics so that users can see how their Facebook Page is performing. Showing interaction, users and reach.

Profile Picture - This is a small picture (200px wide) that appears on your personal or business Timeline. It will appear around the site to represent you whenever you comment, post or like anything on facebook. Your profile picture on a business timeline is most likely to be your logo or company branding, whereas on your personal timeline it would be of your face. 

Cover Photo - A cover photo is the large photo (851 px x 315) that stretches across the top of your timeline, like a banner - just above your profile picture. Cover photos will remain public, even if all the rest of your photos are private. Be aware that your cover photo for your Business Timeline carries some strict guidelines that can be viewed here 

Linked In

Glossary of terms used in and around Linked In

Connections – Similar to friends on Facebook, ‘connections’ is the term used when you link yourself to other people you wish to be associated with on Linked In

Profile - This is your personal profile on Linked In.  Your personal profile enables you to showcase expertise, skills and recommendations. It's your personal brand.

Company Profile - This is a Company Profile. A company profile is then connected to the Employees / People related to it. Company profiles can be populated with Products and Service information.

100% Complete - This shows when your Profile has been completely completed. You should aim to get your Profile to 100% complete as it aids visibility within Linked In.

1st Degree Connections – Direct connections with people that you know on a personal level

2nd Degree Connections – Connections to each of your 1st degree connections

3rd Degree Connections – Connections to those in your 2nd degree connections.

Networks – A group of Linked-In users that can contact you through up to 3 connections away

Invitation – An invitation sent to an existing member of Linked-In to join a network.

Introduction – Messages that allow members to contact you or be contacted through a share or mutual connection.

Groups – Groups on LinkedIn allow professionals to advance their careers by sharing expertise, experience and knowledge on a specific subject. You can search groups and join relevant groups or create your own groups.

Recommendations – This is when somebody is recommended on LinkedIn. Users usually ask business partners, colleague or service providers or clients to ‘recommend them’.  They are effectively online referrals / testimonials.

Linked In Apps - Fairly simple really, any apps that have been downloaded to enhance your LinkedIn profile. See here 

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Social Media