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#Tip: Note these ways to optimise images for Twitter’s in-stream preview

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“If you’ve got a story which is around a map or a graphic but you don’t bother to crop that image properly, you’re effectively killing your own story,” the BBC’s  Mark Frankel told Journalism.co.uk earlier this year.

Twitter got a lot more visual when it rolled out in-stream previews for images late last year, meaning photos posted in a tweet were automatically expanded without users having to click on them.

However, getting it right isn’t as foolproof as it sounds, as the image below shows.

So to avoid giving your own hard work the kiss of death, take a look at this infographic from visual.ly.

It includes handy hints such as the recommended size and crop ratio for landscape images, and how to upload a portrait image which doesn’t accidentally lop off your subject’s head.

 

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#Tip: How often should you be posting to social media?

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Social media might be a great tool for communication, but we all know someone who is a chronic over-sharer.

There’s nothing worse than having your timelines full of someone else’s verbal diarrhoea (and if the person in question is you, it’s a sure-fire way to get yourself unfollowed).

So how many times should you be posting to Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+?

This post on the Buffer blog highlights the importance of striking “the balance between informative and annoying”.

While it doesn’t exactly deliver a cut-and-dried answer, it does offer recommendations from a range of sources – including Buffer’s own strategy for social sharing.

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#Tip: How to organise your Facebook news feed

By owenwbrown on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

By owenwbrown on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

If your Facebook news feed is a muddle of cat pictures, news stories, and yawn-inducing posts from that girl at school you haven’t spoken to in 10 years, you might want some help getting organised.

Luckily Mashable has some great tips for curating a Facebook news feed, including ways to see more (or less) from certain friends and creating personalised news lists – a great way to track news around certain areas and topics.

And even though it’s not possible to eliminate advertisements entirely from the platform, Mashable shows you how to let Facebook know whether those ads for facial hair removal are really relevant for you.

 

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#Tip: Learn pro tips for community engagement with this Google+ Hangout

 

Watch this Google+ Hangout featuring tips for community engagement, moderation and building loyal relationships with your audience.

The Hangout, which marked the 2014 Community Manager Appreciation Day, includes advice from Ed Walker, digital development editor at Trinity Mirror, Hannah Waldram, community manager, EMEA, at Instagram, and magazine publisher Marc Thomas.

Ed, who worked with Hannah and Marc on the eBook Connected, wrote on his blog that the three key things he took away from the Hangout were:

  • Keep calls to action simple
  • Offline engagement is just as important as online
  • Give more attention to those readers who are providing positive input, rather than trolls and “drag-me-downs”

You can catch up on the full Hangout here.

 

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#Tip: Remember these social media tools for reporters

Image by petesimon on Flickr. Some rights reserved

Image by petesimon on Flickr. Some rights reserved

The Wall Street Journal’s DJ@DJ (digital journalism at Dow Jones) event runs several times a year, bringing members of the organisation together to share their knowledge and experience in different fields in a four-day training session in New York.

Among many sessions covering tips and tools for digital innovation, social media editors Elana Zak, Rubina Fillion and Allison Lichter explained how a number of different platforms can be used to engage with the publication’s community and find new stories, helpfully written up for a blog post by WSJ.com’s new social media editor EMEA, Sarah Marshall.

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#Tip: How to build your own personal brand

umbrella

This video on Poynter shows how journalist Robert Hernandez has built a successful personal brand on Twitter under his @webjournalist person, which has more more than 11,500 followers.

Hernandez, digital journalism professor at USC Annenberg, reveals he doesn’t “do branding” and that he had decided “I’m going to be who I am” – even if that includes making nerd jokes.

“I’m a journalist,” he explains. “Your credibility determines what you are known for.”

You can also check out Journalism.co.uk’s tips on personal branding as well as our podcast on the subject.

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#Tip: Social media guidelines for journalists

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by shawncampbell on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

How much of a say should news outlets have over what their journalists post on social media?

If you’re in the process of putting together a set of social media guidelines for your company or are simply curious, take a look at this a list of social media guidelines from international news organisations including the BBC, Associated Press and Reuters.

The list was curated by Kelly Fincham, a journalism professor at Hofstra University in New York, who has also annotated each set of guidelines with a brief comment: “Exhaustive and excellent – particularly on retweets” (AP), “Must for aspiring sports journos” (ESPN), and, “In a nutshell: Don’t be stupid (BBC).

Hat tip to Marc Settle, project producer at the BBC College of Journalism, who tweeted about this list.

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#Tip: Process and tools for finding and verifying UGC

Thinkstock

Thinkstock

One of the ongoing challenges for online journalists is how to effectively find and verify content shared on social media platforms, particularly in breaking news situations where people are looking for accurate information, and fast.

The BBC’s UGC and social media hub is responsible for doing just that, and in a detailed post on the BBC Academy website today assistant editor of the department Trushar Barot breaks down the processes the team carries out to find and verify content, as well as some of the tools they use along the way. He also addresses how the team will try to verify content where they will not be able to reach the creator.

For more on this subject you can also take a look at our guide on social media verification from last year.

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#Tip: Advice for journalists using LinkedIn

Image by Nan Palmero on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

Image by Nan Palmero on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

At our news:rewired conference in September we ran an entire session dedicated to LinkedIn, and focused on how journalists can use the platform to engage with the online community. A write-up of some of the tips shared during the workshop can be found on the event website.

Last week, the blog for the International Journalists’ Network published further advice on “how journalists can conduct more effective searches” using the platform. The collection of pointers came out of a Q&A with Yumi Wilson, corporate communications manager at LinkedIn.

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#Podcast: Using Instagram to find and share media with meaning

Image by Sean MacEntee on Flickr. Some rights reserved

Image by Sean MacEntee on Flickr. Some rights reserved.

The use of Instagram continues to spread among journalists, as news outlets test out different ways to share images, and now microvideo, with their existing audience and to reach new communities.

In this week’s podcast, we look at different examples of how Instagram has been used to share and gather images. As well as some of the initial lessons learned, we discuss the benefits for individual photographers or journalists and the media outlet overall.

We hear from:

  • Peter Bale, vice-president and general manager, CNN International Digital
  • Paul Moakley, deputy photo editor, Time magazine
  • Kathy Ryan, photo editor, The New York Times Magazine
With additional reporting by Alastair Reid, news reporter, Journalism.co.uk.
You can hear future podcasts by signing up to the Journalism.co.uk podcast feed on iTunes.
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