We can offer advice on a range of social media tools to help you work smarter, claim your online presence and keep pace with technology.
Feedly: Stay up to date
Remember a time when you had to go to each individual website to check for new content?
Yes? There’s no need to as we have RSS feeds to do it for us! With RSS feeds, the news comes to you.
Feedly is an easy-to-use RSS feed application. You simply subscribe to a website, be it a blog, newspaper or database, add it to your Feedly account and it keeps track of any new content for you.
It is available on the web and for Android and iOS, so you can have all your RSS feeds with you wherever you go all in one place. If you need any help with setting it up, check out our step-by-step guide or get in contact.
LinkedIn: you are here – getting started
Whether you’re using LinkedIn as another online presence, as a social media platform, or for careers purposes, when people search for you, your LinkedIn page will push you up the search results. So it pays to put some effort into it.
Here are a few first tips:
- Choose a (high quality) photo that shows you how you want to be seen
- Write a summary that covers your past, present and future (not necessarily in that order)
- Don’t write too much text; make it easy to browse such as using bullet points and visuals
If you just do those three things, you’re well on your way to a good LinkedIn page. However if you want to do more, check out ‘Optimise yourself: Next Steps with LinkedIn’ on this, or arrange a one-to-one with one of the team.
LinkedIn: optimise yourself
So you have set up your LinkedIn page and already have a decent photo, a summary and quite a few sections on your LinkedIn page. What next? Well, it depends what you want to use LinkedIn for…
You may want to use an informal profile photo and concentrate more on the social side of LinkedIn; publish posts and updates, join or even set up groups and endorse others so they endorse you. Make sure to customise those connection requests so they know how you are connected.
Make your page as visually appealing as possible. You can add photos, videos, hyperlinks, documents and even presentations. Write a succinct headline under your name, like an elevator pitch. Always keep your page current and update it when you have done something significant. This approach is particularly useful if you’re looking to discover other researchers in your field.
Whether you want to use LinkedIn as an online CV or for job hunting, you need your page to look professional. You could use your official student portrait if you don’t already have a professional one yourself, only include information you are happy to put on your CV and certainly use LinkedIn to search for jobs. Use the ‘Get introduced’ function and take advantage of those second degree connections as an intro with a potential employer.
If you want to discuss anything further, or have something specific you want to use LinkedIn for, contact us to arrange a one-to-one, or check out this blog post on how to enhance your profile.
Pocket: pocket things for later
Found something interesting online, but don’t have the time to read it? Try Pocket: a free and simple application that allows you to save online articles, images, videos, etc. for later.
It’s very easy to use and available on most platforms, including a desktop extension. Anything you save on Pocket will be visible on any of your devices, and best of all, you can read it offline – perfect when commuting or travelling.
Pocket integrates with other apps and services; easily share your favourite articles on social media and export content you need for your projects to Evernote or Dropbox, all from within the app.
One of the fastest growing social media platforms, Snapchat is a free app that allows you to send videos, photos and drawings. What makes Snapchat different to other social media platforms is that the messages will disappear from the recipient’s phone after 10 seconds.
Why use it? With more than 100 million daily users and over six billion daily video views, Snapchat offers an original and fun marketing option for companies. The app has been successfully adopted by leading brands to offer a glimpse into their companies with behind-the-scenes videos or sneak peek teasers.
This is an easy to use app, it’s free and fun. Business Insider offer a good guide to get you started.
Twitter: let’s get started
Twitter is the ideal social media tool for staying current with news, comment, and business information.
It’s an effective tool for:
- Crowdsourcing information and sentiment about any product, organisation or brand
- An essential bootstrapping tool for the entrepreneur
- Maintaining a current and engaging web presence
We’re going to take you through the first steps of setting up your account. Before you start you will need: an idea for a name for your account – your twitter handle – and a picture to represent you or your brand.
Need more help with Twitter? Get in touch to book a one-to-one session with a member of the team.
WhatsApp is a great tool for easy instant messaging. Send and receive messages or phone calls for free anywhere Wi-Fi is available, saving you loads of money.
You can send photos, video or audio files, and maps of your location (really handy when arranging meetings with friends) as well as setting up groups to include your whole class in the conversation. WhatsApp automatically picks up your contacts on your mobile phone, so you have an instant call list. It can be used across devices on your smartphone, tablet, desktop or laptop.
You can personalise your profile with a photo, stickers or a funny status to help your friends identify you. WhatsApp also has a wide range of emoticons and stickers.
There are lots of IM apps available (Viber, Facebook Messenger, Hangouts, Yahoo! Messenger) but WhatsApp is the most popular with 900 million users.
WhatsApp cheers you up when you see a notification light flashing on your smartphone.
Need to know more? Check out their excellent FAQs.
So you want to create a blog and share your thoughts with the world? There are lots of blogging platforms but WordPress is the most popular, currently hosting 60 million websites and growing all the time. It is completely free as its open-source software maintained by volunteers.
There are thousands of themes and plugins to choose from, so you can make your site your own. You’ll be surprised how easily and quickly you’ll learn the basics and create your own website in no time. Prior knowledge of complicated programming languages is not needed.
If you want, you can keep an eye on your site statistics and see where your audience is or, if you prefer, you can make the blog a private one. Big players are using WordPress to host their website (CNN, TIME) so you’ll be in good company.
If you need any help with setting up your blog, just get in contact to arrange a one-to-one meeting with one of the team.
YouTube: be informed as well as entertained
Your immediate thought may not be what a powerful tool YouTube can be. 100 hours of content is uploaded every minute. It’s a search engine in itself. You go there to find music videos, TV clips and yes, cat videos. But it’s also a great place to find information.
Here are some things you may not have thought about when it comes to YouTube:
- How-to guides: the second most popular video category. Don’t know how to do something? From learning how to tie a bow tie, to how to use a database, there will be a video to help.
- Education: the third most popular video category. From lectures to talking heads, it is now habitual to record and upload to YouTube. Our induction video is on our channel.
- Track trends: any social network is a great place to find out what’s happening now and what’s popular. So YouTube can help you stay current and in an entertaining way/
- Vlogging: a blog that’s a video. Keep up-to-date with your favourite people and maybe even make some money.
- Promotion: the adverts you see on the screen are also on YouTube. Brands and organisations use YouTube to show what they are doing.
- Online presence: it’s another place to be and a great way to share your and other’s content. It is a social network after all.
While it may be easy to procrastinate on YouTube, you can also find lots of informative content. You can find examples of many of those above on our YouTube channel.