Filter Your Feed: Creating an Inclusive Online Presence

Apr 18, 2023

Billions of active users log onto their favorite social media platforms each day. Despite their accessibility, the content they come across might not always be inclusive to their demographic, abilities, barriers or needs. As content gets quickly pushed out, it tends to fit into a one-size-fits all approach that focuses on how “average users” will interact.

When producing social media content for your brand or business, it’s important to recognize the diversity among your audience and have the ability to tailor your message in ways that allow for a variety of people to engage. Here are a few ways you can develop more inclusive content to accommodate and welcome your audience:

Make your text easy to read. Avoid using technical terms unless they are appropriate. When using hashtags, capitalize the first letter of each word to make it more legible. Limit the number of special characters to avoid misinterpretation with VoiceOver and other assistive tools.

Provide descriptive Alt Text. Alternative text, or alt text, is a descriptive caption of images that allow people to visualize the graphics when they can’t see them. Make sure to deeply convey the context within the image when describing it. Mention color within the image if it is important to its understanding. Remember that alt text doesn’t have to be overly formal but can express what might be humorous.

Include closed captioning. Video captions are crucial for viewers with hearing impairments, those watching in their non-native language or when someone is in a sound-off environment. Many platforms will automatically generate closed captions for you. Although this is a huge time saver, be sure to proof your closed captions and make edits when necessary.

Promote diverse representation. Be sure that your brand content is as diverse as the audience you are trying to reach. If your social media presence embodies your consumers’ demographics, you will be more likely to connect on a personal level.

By tailoring your feed to your specific audience, you extend a welcoming invitation to engage in a positive space that breaks out of the one-size-fits-all approach and nourishes stronger loyalty to your brand.