social media etiquette

How Do You Express Gratitude on Social Media?

29 Comments 24 November 2009

Image courtesy of bartmaguire

Image courtesy of bartmaguire

This week is the wonderful Tweetsgiving event. I love that it gives me an opportunity to express my gratitude and also benefit a great organization and cause.  As I pondered exactly how I would express gratitude, I began to think about how I would do it in the context of a social media conversation. The beauty of social media is that expressions of  thanks and appreciation are built right into the medium.

Each social media platform has its own unique form of allowing users to express gratitude, and we are given “virtual karma points” for saying thanks to our social network.

Twitter

Retweet someone’s comment: Sometimes I retweet people I follow because it’s great info for my network. Sometimes I retweet people because I feel like I haven’t recognized their general contribution to my twitterverse in a while – and it’s good information. A retweet is recognition of someone’s value to you. That’s a form of thanks.

Tweet someone’s article/blog post/informative essay: they’ve said something really interesting and you’re recognizing it publicly.

Add a person to your Twitter List: I’m so incredibly honored that some people have put me on their list, and made that list public. If you have created groups using TweetDeck, or CoTweet, or another Twitter client, why not make those groups public now through your lists? Let everyone else know how awesome these Twitterers are.

Public recognition via #FollowFriday: The #FollowFriday (or #ff) participation is declining, and I think it’s a result of both fatigue and the rise of Twitter lists. However, the #ff recommendations I’ve received have warmed my heart tremendously and I am extremely grateful for them.

Give a shout out: Why not just tell someone how grateful you are to know them or what you learn from them? Here’s a tweet I sent out 6 days ago.

Twitter thanks tweet

Facebook

You can “like” an update, news story, or just about anything else. It tells people “hey, I appreciate you putting that up.”

facebook like tweetsgiving post

You can become a fan of a Page, Cause or Group. But more importantly, you can write on the wall of these places and thank them for the good work they do.

You can also thank people for joining your Cause or Page or Group. They are now stakeholders, and they love to be thanked. Here’s a “thank you” I received for joining the  Buy Local cause:

cause thank you

Reddit

You actually earn “karma points” for adding stories, voting on stories and commenting on stories in Reddit, which is a way of encouraging you to show your appreciation of others’ posted stories.

StumbleUpon

If you like a story, “stumble” it! As a blogger, it’s an incredibly wonderful thing to have one of my stories “stumbled.” It sends a lot of new folks to my site, and more than anything else, I know stumbling is not a task undertaken lightly. Stumbling a story means it is really, truly worthwhile. I am so appreciative of every stumbler. Do the same for someone else and show your gratitude for a great piece of information.

Linkedin

The very best way to express gratitude on Linkedin? Recommend someone. It takes less than five minutes and adds weight and credibility to their profile. If a connection performs a great service for you (your mechanic, your advisor, your real estate agent), write them a recommendation. I received one completely out of the blue last week and I still smile thinking about what a treat that was to receive it! All you have to do is click “recommend this person.” Do it today!

linkedin recommendation

Blogging

If you have a blogroll, adding blogs that offer value to others is a deep honor to them, and public recognition of your appreciation of their blogging efforts.

When you comment on someone’s blog post, why not also add what was particularly great about the piece as well?

Subscribe to the blogs you want to read regularly. Show the blog owner/writers that you appreciate their work that way. Socially share blog posts that you love on all of your other social sites.

Don’t forget to assign credit to everyone that you reference in your blog posts. I like to “litter” my posts with all sorts of outgoing links to offer my readers more information as well as give credit to those who contribute to the development of a blog post.

Just thank them. In a blog post.

I’ve thanked contributors to posts, contributors to conversations that inspired posts, and in fact, I’m going to thank a few people who have inspired this post: Mama Lucy, Stacey Monk, John Haydon and Avi Kaplan for inviting me to participate in Tweetsgiving, the team of amazing bloggers who are also joining in this effort. I also want to offer special recognition in particular to two bloggers Ching Ya and Aviva Victoria Bruekner who, once I asked them to participate, put more than 100% of their energy and gratitude into this project and vigorously publicized it to their networks.

I haven’t even touched on all the ways we can thank someone, express gratitude, or show appreciation on social media. How do you do it?



This post was created as part of a global groundswell of gratitude called TweetsGiving. The celebration, created by US nonprofit Epic Change, is an experiment in social innovation that seeks to change the world through the power of gratitude. I hope you’ll visit the TweetsGiving site to learn more, and to bring your grateful heart to the party by sharing your gratitude, and giving in honor of that for which you’re most thankful.

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  • Aviva

    Thank you!

    [Reply]

  • Aviva

    Thank you!

    [Reply]

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  • Neato!!! Awesome inspiring post with many great suggestions. Hmmmm, I’m off to implement a few. 🙂 Thanks heaps, Debra! 🙂

    [Reply]

  • Neato!!! Awesome inspiring post with many great suggestions. Hmmmm, I’m off to implement a few. 🙂 Thanks heaps, Debra! 🙂

    [Reply]

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  • Great ideas for thanking others. I have been using fb lately by @ing people in staus updates.
    When doing this it shows others how grateful you are and sends the notification to that person. Love it!

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Jodi- GREAT addition to the post. And I completely agree that it’s a wonderful way to tell others how grateful you are. So glad you added this one!

    [Reply]

  • Great ideas for thanking others. I have been using fb lately by @ing people in staus updates.
    When doing this it shows others how grateful you are and sends the notification to that person. Love it!

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Jodi- GREAT addition to the post. And I completely agree that it’s a wonderful way to tell others how grateful you are. So glad you added this one!

    [Reply]

  • Lovely post, Debra! Thank you for including me with the @leoraw. I love the idea of connecting one helpful person to another helpful person.

    And I should write a recommendation for someone on LinkedIn…I’ll put that on my to do list! And writing on the wall of someone I fan…that sounds so easy, why not?

    I’m going to post this in Facebook…

    [Reply]

  • Lovely post, Debra! Thank you for including me with the @leoraw. I love the idea of connecting one helpful person to another helpful person.

    And I should write a recommendation for someone on LinkedIn…I’ll put that on my to do list! And writing on the wall of someone I fan…that sounds so easy, why not?

    I’m going to post this in Facebook…

    [Reply]

  • Heather Hansen

    I am still learning twitter and how to use other forms of social media. Thank you for these ideas. I think saying thank you is very important and not done often enough, including myself. It is a good reminder to us all.

    [Reply]

  • Heather Hansen

    I am still learning twitter and how to use other forms of social media. Thank you for these ideas. I think saying thank you is very important and not done often enough, including myself. It is a good reminder to us all.

    [Reply]

  • GREAT post and AWESOME ideas that are easy to implement and can mean so much!!

    warmest E

    [Reply]

  • GREAT post and AWESOME ideas that are easy to implement and can mean so much!!

    warmest E

    [Reply]

  • Another excellent post that sums up the numerous ways to give thanks to folks who provide us with a wealth of valuable information on a regular basis – no mean feat.
    Another way to give thanks online (albeit a bit obvious) is simply to introduce relevant contacts in your networks to one another. It takes time, but you can’t help but get a good feeling when you help connect two people. In doing so, I think you also give each a vote of confidence that they’re someone you respect and recommend.
    And on that note – off to do just that.

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Kelli-Another GREAT addition to this post. Introductions are powerful, and supportive ways to tell people you are thinking about them and their interests. I love your comment about the good feeling you get when you connect two networks to one another because that is so true. It reminds me that I’ve also introduced folks to each other on Twitter with a simple tweet telling them they should meet – not quite as strong as an introduction – but hard to do better in 140 characters!

    [Reply]

  • Another excellent post that sums up the numerous ways to give thanks to folks who provide us with a wealth of valuable information on a regular basis – no mean feat.
    Another way to give thanks online (albeit a bit obvious) is simply to introduce relevant contacts in your networks to one another. It takes time, but you can’t help but get a good feeling when you help connect two people. In doing so, I think you also give each a vote of confidence that they’re someone you respect and recommend.
    And on that note – off to do just that.

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    Kelli-Another GREAT addition to this post. Introductions are powerful, and supportive ways to tell people you are thinking about them and their interests. I love your comment about the good feeling you get when you connect two networks to one another because that is so true. It reminds me that I’ve also introduced folks to each other on Twitter with a simple tweet telling them they should meet – not quite as strong as an introduction – but hard to do better in 140 characters!

    [Reply]

  • Eva, Mari, Heather, Leora, Aviva – I appreciate you comments, and that you took the time to stop, write, and add to the conversation!

    [Reply]

  • Eva, Mari, Heather, Leora, Aviva – I appreciate you comments, and that you took the time to stop, write, and add to the conversation!

    [Reply]

  • Debra,

    Personally I enjoyed lots about blog commenting and tweeting/stumble upon wonderful posts I came across. It’s great to let the author know about the good work he/she poured in, how we are appreciating their works and let others know about it. ^^

    How blessed to have met you on social media and learned so much from your fabulous posts. To me, you’ve always been giving in either social media informations and spreading the thoughtful acts. Thanks to you, I get to meet some nice people along with a thanksgiving post idea!

    @wchingya
    Social/Blogging Tracker

    [Reply]

  • Debra,

    Personally I enjoyed lots about blog commenting and tweeting/stumble upon wonderful posts I came across. It’s great to let the author know about the good work he/she poured in, how we are appreciating their works and let others know about it. ^^

    How blessed to have met you on social media and learned so much from your fabulous posts. To me, you’ve always been giving in either social media informations and spreading the thoughtful acts. Thanks to you, I get to meet some nice people along with a thanksgiving post idea!

    @wchingya
    Social/Blogging Tracker

    [Reply]

  • Great ideas, and central to developing a ‘culture of gratitude’ that nonprofits need as they build relationships with all who make their work possible, not the least of whom are those we serve…whom we often forget to thank. I just want to add that you are particularly adept at expressing gratitude online!

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    @Melinda – Great point about the relationship-building nature of gratitude! have found that firstly, I enjoy thanking people online and secondly, it does build relationships.

    [Reply]

  • Great ideas, and central to developing a ‘culture of gratitude’ that nonprofits need as they build relationships with all who make their work possible, not the least of whom are those we serve…whom we often forget to thank. I just want to add that you are particularly adept at expressing gratitude online!

    [Reply]

    Debra Askanase Reply:

    @Melinda – Great point about the relationship-building nature of gratitude! have found that firstly, I enjoy thanking people online and secondly, it does build relationships.

    [Reply]

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About

Debra Askanase is an experienced digital engagement strategist, non-profit executive, and community organizer. She works with mission-driven organizations to develop digital strategies and campaigns that engage, create trust, and move stakeholders to action. Debra speaks at conferences worldwide on the intersection of technology, social media, and nonprofit organizations.

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