Category News & Work

An A-Z of Social Media Terms



As much as social media platforms are designed to provide interactions between friends and family, they are becoming an increasingly important tool for businesses to be found and communicate with both the public and their customers.

Social media allows for increased creativity throughout every communicable aspect of branding and marketing messages, not forgetting the potential impact that thoughtful advertising within social media can have. It’s therefore no surprise that the need for companies to stay on top of their social presence is increasing as well, whether that involves posting viral content or engaging with followers and customers.

Such is the complicated world of social media, we’ve compiled a break-down of some of the most useful social media terms (jargon), helping you become social media savvy in no time.



  • Avatar
    • An Avatar is the online virtual representation of a user, used to maintain privacy within various social media platforms.
  • Activity Log
    • Activity Logs track all the activity on a specific social media account, including posts, comments and user details changes.
  • Affiliate
    • Affiliates are used to promote a social media page from another user, for the purpose of increasing followers and brand awareness. Affiliates usually require a fee for sharing a page or request that the same is done in return.
  • Admin
    • An Admin is the user of a profile who has been granted permission to have control over the page. One profile can have multiple Admins to increase efficiency for larger businesses.
  • Average Response Time
    • The Average Response Time is the average amount of time taken to respond to a direct message or comment on your page. In the eyes of customers, the shorter this is the better.


  • Badge
    • A Badge is a tool used for integrating social media presence into a website, where visitors can easily follow the business through their website.
  • Bio
    • A Bio is the unique description about your business on your social media profile. It should incorporate the marketing style of your brand and produce the correct tone of voice to clearly represent your values.
    • URL shorting service that reduces the number of characters a URL uses. Predominantly used on Twitter where space is limited to 140 characters.
  • Brand Advocate
    • A Brand Advocate is a person who has a positive connection or view of the brand and wishes to share it with their personal connections and followers. Advocates can act as trustworthy and valuable reviewers that can influence many others to take an interest in your brand.
  • Blog
    • A Blog is your very own news delivery platform, where businesses can share what they’ve been up to as well as release content which helps to engage their visitors. Sharing blog posts on social media is a great way to get your content noticed, start a conversation and increase traffic to your website.
  • Buffer
    • The increase in the number of social media platforms has driven the start-up of companies like Buffer. Buffer allows users and businesses to manage their social media networks by scheduling their posts.


  • Circles
    • A Circle is a term coined by Google, to represent personalised groups of contacts and followers on the Google+ platform.
  • Cover Photo
    • Cover Photos are the images at the top of social media profiles including Facebook and Twitter. Used in addition to your profile photo, it can provide a creative source of free marketing space.
  • Connections
    • A term used mainly within the LinkedIn platform, to mean the people and other businesses associated with your account. LinkedIn Connections are able to message and endorse other users.
  • Content Marketing
    • Content Marketing is the process of creating worthwhile and engaging content which your followers find useful and interesting. This is usually done in the hope that users will share the content via social media platforms, thus attracting new followers.


  • Digg
    • Digg is a social media website where users can vote for posts to be placed in the list of popular content in the home page.
  •  Deflection Rate
    • A measurement of the number of direct customer communications which are deferred to other means of communication E.g. phone or email.
  •  Direct Message
    • When a business needs to communicate with an individual customer, it can do so privately on most social media platforms through direct messaging. This ensures customer details or sensitive data are never revealed to other connections or followers. Twitter has recently (August) removed their 140 character limit for direct messages.
  •  Display Ad
    • The colourful adverts on the side of or within news feeds are known as Display Ads. A popular form of paid advertising, Display Ads can incorporate impressive targeting abilities such as location, age and gender due to the data available within user profiles.


  • Event
    • Events are user-generated groups with a focus on a particular time and date. Events can be used to organise real events such as shows or virtual events such as online competitions. The format gives users the option to accept invites and share to friends.
  • Embedded Media
    • The term given to content from a separate site or platform, appearing within another platform. E.g. a YouTube video being shared on Twitter.
  • Engagement
    • A way of measuring impact and response. Engagement can be analysed using the engagement rate calculation, taking into account impressions, likes, shares and interactions.


  • Facebook
    • Facebook is one of the largest social media networks in the World. Founded in 2004, the company has grown substantially with the service now boasting over a billion users.
  • Favourite
    • Twitter users are given the option to ‘favourite’ Tweets, saving them into their personal list of favourited Tweets and sharing the content onto the news feeds of their followers. On Facebook this is a Like.
  • Follower
    • Most social media platforms incorporate a following system, where users can opt-in to receive updates of other users in their own news feed. The more followers an account has the more influential and engaging it can be seen to be.
  • First Response Time
    • The all-important length of time taken to respond to a customer – A key factor in defusing negative comments and unwanted posts.


  • Geotagging
    • Code that allows users/businesses to highlight their location within a post. Platforms such as Instagram have many users who search for photos by location.
  • Geotargeting
    • A great way to sharpen your campaign. Targeting users by location can increase effectiveness of ad campaigns and ensures your ads are only visible to users within your target areas.
  • Google+
    • Google’s social media network and is labelled as a place to connect with friends and family, but also services business interests. Having a Google+ account for business (Google My Business profile) is an important consideration when ensuring your business appears in search and map results.
  • Google My Business
    • Related to Google+ and allows business information to appear with search and map results so that customers and users can find your business and location across a variety of devices.
  • Groups
    • Groups within Facebook allow users to organise their friends into personalised lists, making people easier to find and adding the ability to instantly message a whole group.


  • Hashtag
    • A way of marking and categorising posts (predominantly on Twitter). Hashtags allow for all posts with the same Hashtag to be seen in a list. This option can be useful for monitoring campaigns where user-generated content is involved or adding your tweet to a conversation, thus increasing exposure.
  • Hootsuite
    • Similar to Buffer, Hootsuite allows for multiple social media channels to be congregated into one feed – simplifying message publication.
  • Handle
    • A handle is a term given to the usernames of Twitter users, as a way of naming people within posts or tagging them within other content (E.G. @ChalkWardAd).


  • Impressions
    • Similar to the measurement of reach, Impressions count the number of times someone may have seen a post or ad. It’s important to note that users don’t have to interact with the content for an impression to have been made.
  • Intellectual Property
    • Although social media is primarily designed for sharing content, it’s wise to be cautious when posting any content which may be copyrighted or that you don’t have the rights to post. Intellectual Property includes copyright, trademarks, images and trade secrets amongst others.
  • Inbound Marketing
    • Perhaps the most engaging and beneficial form of social media marketing available, Inbound Marketing refers to the creation of exciting and useful content which organically drives users to your page or website and increases followers.
  • Influencer
    • If your customers are listening to someone, it’s worth making sure that person has a positive outlook towards your business. Influencers are trusted users with large followings who can both make or break new brands.
  • Instagram
    • Photo and video sharing service that lets users apply different filters to their images giving different perspectives before sharing via social networks. Instagram was purchased by Facebook in 2012.
  • Interests
    • Key factor when developing social media advertising campaigns. Interests allow you to show ads only to users/customers with specific interest – E.G. A clothes brand can show ads to only users that have registered interests in fashion or shoes.


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  • Klout
    • Klout is a marketing-focused website that measure the social influence of an individual/business based on their social media activity.


  • Like
    • In an attempt at letting users quickly express their opinions, Facebook was the first in adding a feature where users could ‘Like’ content. The function is now frequently seen as a measure of engagement and used as a measurement within campaigns and competitions. On Twitter, this is known as Favourite.
  • LinkedIn
    • Designed to be the social media site for professionals, LinkedIn is a refined version of other social media sites, where experience, news stories, business discussion and qualifications are uploaded over funny cat videos.
  • Life Event
    • A recent feature presented by Facebook, Life Events allow users to showcase important events which deserve more attention than a standard post.


  • Multi-Channel Attribution
    • The process of using more than one social media channels to communicate similar messages from the same campaign. Hootsuite offers this service.
  • Meme
    • A meme is a term given to parodic posts which mock certain behaviours. Memes frequently turn into viral content with users adapting and producing their own twist on the original message.


  • News Feed
    • The stream of content which is sent into a user’s home page, based on the users they follow and ads that have been targeted to them. The more times you view the same person’s page the more their content will appear in the news feed.
  • Networks
    • A network encompasses all of a user’s social media profiles and followers of each, showing the total marketing potential of the user.
  • Newsjacking
    • Ever heard the phrase ‘Jumping on the bandwagon’? Newsjacking refers to the use of a news story developed by another user, to be passed on to a business’ own followers through their page. Important and popular stories can have thousands of people searching for related information, so offering it from your page can create a huge influx of new visitors.


  • Organic Reach
    • Organic Reach refers to the number of impressions or engagements made through natural posting of content, with no paid forms of boosting or advertising.
    • is a URL shortening service designed by Hootsuite, allowing businesses to post shortened and personalised URLs into their posts.
  • Optimised Profile
    • When a user of a social media platform has entered all information necessary, they will be more likely to show up in search results and hence be found by other users. A fully optimised profile has 100% profile completion with a good number of followers.


  • Paid Reach
    • The total engagement and impressions from paid forms of social media advertising. Could be measured in various ways such as increases in followers or by comments on a post.
  • Pinned Tweet/Post
    • A tweet or post which is selected by the user to be pinned to the top of the page, taking pride of place for all new visitors to see. A pinned tweet/post will remain at the top of the page until unpinned.
  • Pinterest
    • Developed to appeal to the more creative amongst us and primarily a photo-sharing and discovery platform, Pinterest only allows images to be shared and ‘Pinned’ to other users.
  • Promoted Accounts
    • A paid form of social media advertising, used to gain awareness in the desired group of users. Involves the promoted account being featured on users news feeds who do not currently follow the page.


  • Quora
    • Question and answer based site where all questions are asked, answered, edited and organised by its community of users.


  • Remarketing
    • The process of serving adverts to social media users via the platform, who have previously searched a relevant keyword or visited specific pages on your website.
  • Response Rate
    • Think your marketing efforts could be doing more? The response rate shows the number of responses to a social media campaign, compared to the number of impressions. Useful to see how many people are simply scrolling past your messages without engaging.
  • Retweet
    • Retweets are used within Twitter, to share another users post on your own profile.


  • Surveys
    • One of the best ways to find out what your customers want is simply by asking them. Creating a conversation based on feedback can improve customer trust and provide real, up-to-date and valuable insight.
  • Scheduling
    • Services such as Buffer and Hootsuite allow social media posts to be scheduled at optimum times E.g. when an important event is about to start.
  • SEO
    • For those who are still struggling to see the benefits of social media for businesses, having an active social media presence can in fact increase the rankings of your website within search engine results. Using links to your website on social media pages, as well as content being shared, translates to more backlinks and a more diverse website.
  • Share
    • Share is used within Facebook, to share a post or content from another user or business onto your own page.
  • Share of Voice
    • A subjective measurement for estimating your social media market share, Share of Voice compares the popularity of your page and content to that of your competitors.
  • Social Selling
    • If you’ve ever used a social media site to advertise your products to customers, you’ve been taking part in Social Selling. Platforms such as Twitter now incorporate ‘shop window’ functions where businesses can directly advertise their stock to their followers.


  • Thread
    • Where all posts and comments from within the same conversation are placed into a sorted list. Facebook quickly realised this was the easiest way for multiple users to start a chat.
  • Trend
    • A trend can be literally anything which has lots of users talking about it. Businesses are known to participate in ‘trendjacking’ where a popular topic is used as a basis for posting content. Popular hashtags are highlighted as trends within Twitter.
  • Twitter
    • A social media platform with hundreds of millions of users. The service is famous for its bird-like branding, including the use of ’tweets’ to post content. Limited to 140 character per tweet.
  • Tagging
    • Tagging is the process of including another social media user within a post, by using their handle or name within the content.


  • Unfollows
    • All users have the option to stop receiving content from certain accounts, by unfollowing the specific page or account.
  • User-Generated Content
    • A clever marketing tactic, where users are encouraged to produce their own campaign-related content. This technique has been known to hugely increase customer engagement and boost brand awareness.


  • Vanity URL
    • A unique addition to social media campaigns, the landing page URL can be personalised to match the context of the individual post or overall campaign. This simple tool can add a burst of creativity with minimal effort.
  • Verified Page
    • Platforms such as Facebook and Twitter include an option for business users to become verified users, in an attempt at eliminating fraudulent accounts. On Twitter this is usually a tick symbol with a blue circular background.
  • Vimeo
    • Similar platform to YouTube, Vimeo is an uploading, storing and steaming service for video content.
  • Viral Content
    • Utterly brilliant, innovative and inspiring are some of the key ingredients that go into persuading people to share your content. When a post gains momentum and begins to reach large numbers of users, it’s defined as going viral.


  • Wall
    • A wall is the profile page of a social media user. Posts can be written on to the wall or content can be shared to a wall.


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  • YouTube
    • Now owned by Google, YouTube is the world’s largest video uploading, viewing and sharing service. It is also the 2nd largest search engine in the world.


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Want to know more about social media marketing for business? Get in touch.

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