The post-World War II babies born between 1946 and 1964 account for an impressive 77 million of the population and with 91% of us on 2 or more social media platforms, it’s no wonder that an impressive 80% of individuals over 50 use Facebook – with youtube coming in at a close second. So, how do you navigate and utilize social media platforms for optimal results?
Set a Clear Objective
Are you using social media for potential employment, to share photos of your grandkids or something in between? Clearly defining the role of each social media platform will set boundaries for what may or may not be appropriate.
Understand Online Safety
Learn how to use each platform’s privacy shortcuts and settings to comfortably share and connect with others while also being able to recognize sensitive content and behavior and how to report it.
Business + Employment
Use your channels to discuss your industry, what’s trending and interesting current events. Post events in your industry. For example, if you attend a professional conference, mention that you went and highlight some positives. Keep in mind that it’s okay for Facebook posts to be less work-centric but be sure to be positive and not express extreme views.Evaluate each post from the perspective of a potential employer or client.
Your Best Self(ie)
Don’t post ubiquitous selfies. This makes you look like a narcissist. Occasional selfies at the top of a mountain you climbed or with an industry leader are exciting. That duck face selfie in your bathroom mirror, not so much.
Tell Scammers to Scram
Never send personal or financial information (account numbers, social security numbers, etc) to businesses using social media. Many scammers masquerade as legitimate companies to get seniors’ information online, just as on the phone, with identity theft often the objective.
Know What NOT to Share
Avoid posting that you will be away from home or out of town on your social media accounts. Criminals use social networks, too, and have already started targeting the homes of those who say they are away. Before “checking in” at a location on your social networks consider the fact that this check in tells a criminal that you will be away from home all day at an event or even for a few hours at a movie or ball game.
If you like checking into locations, consider doing so when leaving (and say so) instead of arriving. Don’t mention in a public social media post that you are home alone. This is especially important for the elderly or those who are bedridden or otherwise vulnerable. That is almost as attractive to criminals as nobody being in your home.
Write a Great Bio
Wether your social media profiles are for connecting with friends and family or to find a special someone, it’s important to have a great biography. Your main social profile’s bio is usually just a sentence or two about yourself or your business. Think of it as a perfect place to put your elevator pitch. Not necessarily in a salesy way, but as if someone were to ask you to tell them briefly what you’re about, what would you say? Be sure to fill out your bio to its full potential. While some networks allow you to only have a limited amount of characters, others encourage more robust and lengthy bios. Take advantage of this to share only the best about yourself!
It doesn’t matter what age you are – you can learn technology. The real barrier is likely to be attitude – believing there is no need to be a part of online social networking will hinder your chances and reconnecting with friends, connecting with loved ones or meeting a new beau. Facebook and social media platforms like it, put the world at your fingertips. By-the-minute news is available 24/7 providing you with an easy, fun way to experience current events and so much more.