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7 Twitter Mistakes Small Businesses Should Avoid

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By Betty Wang

Linking to Twitter if you have a website for kids. The federal Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) prohibits website operators from collecting personal information from children under 13 without parental consent. Twitter happens to be one of the sites that doesn’t use age-screening mechanisms, meaning that kids under 13 who access Twitter via your site might input personal information, which would violate COPPA.

Going on hiatus, or failing to offer a timely response. There’s nothing that kills your Twitter page more than being inactive and not responding to your customers’ tweets in a timely manner. Make sure you tweet consistently and respond to your customers quickly, to keep up the appearance of an active account and keeping up with proper Twitter protocol.

Sounding like a robot. One of Twitter’s best features is being able to provide businesses with the ability to be more accessible. Make sure that while you maintain professionalism, you also still sound human.

Not following easy steps to prevent hacking. Hackers run rampant on Twitter and can end up tarnishing your business’ account with annoying, unprofessional spam ads and viral messages. There are easy steps to take to prevent this from happening, such as updating your password, making it a secure one, and regularly scanning for viruses.

Don’t think disclaimers will protect you. You’re free to tack on whatever disclaimer you’d like on your business’ Twitter feed, but just remember that they often (almost always) have no legal impact. In other words, they don’t shield you from potential liability.

For more information, visit www.findlaw.com.

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