We’ve compiled a glossary of *almost* every letter of the alphabet, to help you understand the weird and wonderful world of social media just a little bit more.

# – Hashtag

The symbol that once prefaced telephone numbers now prefaces trending words. The hashtag first appeared on Twitter as a tool to discover conversations of a similar topic, and is now used on Instagram and Facebook too.

A – Algorithm

Sounds scary, but it’s not. It’s a rather clever calculation used – in terms of social media – to put user content into a particular order. Twitter, Facebook and Instagram all use algorithms on their newsfeeds to show you content that they think you’ll be most interested in.

B – Bio

As in, biography. It’s a short snippet about yourself that can be seen on your social media profiles. A must-have, in our eyes.

C – Clickbait

A word that only came into the Oxford English Dictionary this year, and it is one you want to steer well away from. Clickbait content’s sole purpose is to encourage users to click onto a particular web page, often by any means necessary – truthful or not.

D – DMs

Short for ‘direct messages’, these are essentially private messages. Warning: Flirtatious people may very well try sliding into yours.

E – Engagement

Sorry to break it to you, but this isn’t the marriage proposal kind. Rather, engagement in social media terms refers to the amount of interaction generated between users on social platforms. Quite literally, how ‘social’ people are being on social media.

F – Filters

Filters are evolving to so much more than just a photography tool that gives you a nice tan. All major social networking sites that have image editing functions use them – from Instagram’s ‘Valencia’ to the more recent dog filter (to name just one) on Snapchat.


Stands for Graphics Interchange Format, and also known as my favourite thing on the internet. These are compressed, looping static or animated images that are often more hilarious than any words can muster.

Just like the Cif/Jif debacle of 2000, people aren’t sure how to pronounce the acronym, but it’s like ‘jif’, FYI. 


H – Handle

The informal definition of a handle is a nickname for someone, so it kind of makes sense. It’s another word used for your account name/username. For example, our handle is @24fingers. So now you know.

I – Influencers

People who are kind of a big deal on social media. Influencers are users who have a large following and can really drive trends, topics and products into popularity online.

K – Klout

Klout is a site that measures your own social influence, and gives you a score between 1-100. Apparently, the average score is 40. Mr Obama’s is a mere 99.

L – Live-stream

The favourite function of 2016. Live-streaming allows users to broadcast themselves live on to newsfeeds via video. Both Facebook and Twitter are big on it, and it’s becoming more popular by the day.

M – Meme

Ah, memes. These are images that spread like wildfire across the internet due to their LOL-factor and usually have an overlay of text. BTW, it’s pronounced ‘meem’, not ‘me-me’.

Social Media A-Z Glossary

N – Notification

That ping, bell or vibrate you hear when a social platform is alerting you to something. It could be that someone has liked your picture, you have a new message or there’s an important update. Bringgggg.

O – Organic Reach

Not so much an eco-friendly reach, but rather one grown without paying for it.

P – Paid Reach

The other type of reach, which is typically much larger than an organic reach as you are paying the social network you are using to spread your content far beyond your own friends and family.

Q – Quote Tweet

Not just a tweet where you include a quote, a ‘quote tweet’ is a form of retweeting where you can add your own comments whilst sharing the original message.

R – Reach

We’ve mentioned ‘reach’ a few times now. So to clarify, reach is simply the potential number of people your content could… reach.


Search Engine Optimisation. It’s all about making yourself visible on a search engine’s, and we’ve got a pretty nifty guide to it here.

T – Troll

As horrible as the trolls you heard about it folktales, internet trolls are the nasty users who post hateful and negative messages on social media sites to hurt and upset others for their own amusement. Send them to dwell in the caves, we say.

Social Media A-Z Glossary

The ugly internet troll


User generated content. Basically, any time of content created by other users and often shared through social media. This type of content is great for businesses and where possible, you should encourage your customers to create it.

V – Viral

Content that is contagious, like an infection. Lovely. Viral content spreads incredibly fast and is often highly emotive. We’re happy to share the details on our very own 26 million viral moment (yes, tell me more.)

W – WhatsApp

It’s an encrypted, private instant messaging app, owned by Facebook, who bought it out in 2014.

Y – YouTube

The most popular video-sharing platform there is. Filled with trailers, tutorials and plenty of viral content.

Z – Unfortunately there are no Zzz’s on social media. Because the internet never sleeps. 


So there you have it. The A-Z of social media. If there are any words you’re still having trouble with, let us know.