A lot of us make jokes about the things people choose to post on social media sites, and we all have those friends who seem to post every single moment from their day. However, social media sites can also be a great source of connection and inspiration.
Personally, the posts I never get tired of seeing are those of travel photos. Maybe it is because I am in the travel industry, I don't know. But especially when it has been a long day, if I stumble upon photos from someone's recent trip to Rio, with beautiful sunsets and laughter on the beach, it just makes me feel good. However, even with travel photos, there are some dos and don'ts on posting, if you want to keep your social media friends and family engaged, as well as keeping things safe for you.
1. The first rule in posting photos is if you don't have a house-sitter, wait until you get home to post photos of your vacation. You do not want to promote to the world that you are away from home. Even though most of us know this, I see a lot of real time vacation posts every day, and you make it pretty easy for a burglar to know you are not home if you have essentially told him you are not home.
2. Use pictures to educate, entertain, enlighten, delight, and inspire others as well as yourself. One of the benefits of posting photos is it gives you an online album that you can go back to over and over, every time you need a pick-me-up.
3. This one may be obvious, but if you have had to call in sick time at work in order to take this trip, do not post any pictures, and make sure your traveling companions know this as well. It would be crazy if a trip to Vegas made you lose your job (but it wouldn't be the first time for Vegas).
4. Include a tantalizing description or fun fact along with your photos. Photos will be most interesting when they contain enough background information so that they tell a story. Also, if you've learned something interesting about the destination you are photographing, include that in your post. This will help your audience feel that they are part of the experience with you.
5. Be choosy with your photos, especially duplicates. We've all heard the expression, "a little goes a long way" and this is certainly true about posting photos. The 10 pictures of Mt. Everest taken from different angles may seem really interesting to you, but especially for people who weren't there, they get the picture, so to speak, after seeing it one time. Also, if you are using an editing app with your photos, be careful with how much you edit them, as some filters may make the photo look great on your smart phone, but pixelated or distorted online.