Learning a new language is difficult, and there is no Duolingo Owl for social media acronyms (Duo, if you're reading this, please stop texting me because I'm totally going to practice my Japanese later). However, proper, clever use of internet abbreviations is part of a successful social media strategy — so if your brand is using social media for business, you'll want to brush up on your knowledge.

The incorrect use of abbreviations or acronyms on the internet can be confusing at best and embarrassing at worst. You don't want to come across as someone's great aunt Margy:

 As a result, we've compiled the ultimate guide to social media acronyms. Continue reading for a crash course in internet jargon.

Abbreviations used on specific networks

  • FB Facebook
  • G+ stands for Google Plus.
  • Instagram (IG)
  • LI stands for LinkedIn.
  • Twitter (TW)
  • YouTube (YT)
  • DM stands for direct message.
  • TK stands for TikTok

This is a personal type of interaction that only the sender and recipient see. Users can "slide into" someone's DMs on Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook, TikTok Instagram, and LinkedIn by sending a private message.

MT has been Modified Tweet.

Tweets beginning with MT indicate that the Tweeter has edited the content they are retweeting for brevity or other reasons. This is also known as a Quote Tweet.

PM stands for private message.

Private messages and direct messages are the same things. When someone requests that you PM them, they are essentially asking you to move a public conversation into the private realm.

PRT stands for Partial Retweet.

This is similar to an RT, but it is used to indicate that you are only quoting a portion of what the other Twitter user originally said. Perhaps you're condensing to make room for your own commentary.

RT stands for Retweet.

Some Twitter users repost a tweet and use "RT" plus the user's handle for attribution instead of hitting the retweet button or retweeting with a comment.

Popular social media abbreviations and acronyms:

AFAIK: As far as I know 

Used when sharing facts or stating something you believe to be true, but typing AFAIK indicates that you aren't certain. After all, you're not an expert.

AKA:  Also Known to as

This is a useful abbreviation when referring to people who have two names (Stefani Germanotta AKA Lady Gaga) or a common nickname (Simone Biles aka the GOAT). See also "GOAT."

 AMA: Ask Me Anything.

AMAs are a type of social question-and-answer session. Companies, influencers, brand representatives, and ordinary people may conduct AMAs on Twitter, Reddit, or in a Facebook or Instagram live stream.

ASAP: As soon as possible

When you need something right away.

BRB: Be right back.

This was one of the first social media acronyms, appearing in the late 1980s or early 1990s. It dates back to the chat forum era, but it occasionally reappears on social media.

BTS stands for "Behind the Scenes."

No, not the South Korean boy band. This abbreviation is used to give followers an inside look at your brand.

@balletexcelohio Peter Pan ✨magic✨ #bts #peterpan #flying #balletflex #behindthescenes #fyp ♬ GOOD TIME - Niko Moon


BTW: By the way

This social media acronym is used to add additional information, go off on a tangent, or throw some shade.

CMV or CMM: Changed My View or Changed My Mind

You're expressing an opinion, but you're aware that it could be flawed. You're willing to have a civil discussion. There's even a subreddit dedicated to CMV discussions.

DYK: Did you know...

Did you know that the DYK acronym is an excellent way to share a fun fact with your social media audience? Include it in your social media caption or as a hashtag.

 ELI5: Explain (it to me) like I’m five

This Reddit social media abbreviation is used to request a simple explanation for a complex topic or concept.

FBF stands for Flashback Friday.

On a Friday, this is a fun way to go back in time.

FOMO stands for "fear of missing out."

You've been missing out if you haven't heard of FOMO. This social phobia expresses anxiety about absence. For those who prefer to stay at home, there is the antonym acronym JOMO, which stands for Joy of Missing Out.

For the win: FTW

Acclamation that is sometimes sincere, sometimes sarcastic, and sometimes full of genuine excitement. (On the other hand, FTL stands For The loss.)

FWIW: For what it’s worth

This social media acronym is commonly used to express one's opinion in a non-rude or overbearing manner. It demonstrates that you are not purposefully calling someone out if they say something you disagree with. This is most commonly found on Twitter or message boards.

FYI: For your information,

This social media abbreviation is an informative abbreviation that is occasionally delivered with a hint of sass.

H/T: Hat Tip.

A hat tip, abbreviated as HT, is a virtual nod that acknowledges an original source for information or an image. It can also be used to mean heard through.

ICYMI: In case you missed it

A method of highlighting content or news that may have been overlooked in the never-ending blitz that is social media.

IMHO/IMO: In my humble opinion/In my opinion.

A disclaimer that someone is sharing their opinion about something rather than facts. There is disagreement over whether the H stands for humble or honest.

IRL: In real life, IRL refers to when something occurs in reality rather than on social media, games, or anywhere else on the internet.

JSYK: Just so you Know

This abbreviation is used when delivering

LMK: Let me know.

Someone who uses this social media abbreviation is looking for feedback or information. Creators frequently include "LMK if this helps!" after offering advice.

MFW: My Face When

This acronym is always accompanied by an image of a facial expression. It can be used in both positive and negative contexts (for example, "MFW I find #1000 in my old pants" or "MFW my sister finds #1000 in the old pants I just gave her").

Source: Reddit

NBD: No big deal

Frequently used as a humble brag for something that is actually a big deal for the person who wrote the social post.

NP: No Problem.

A very cool reaction (regardless of whether it was actually a problem).

NFSW: Not Safe For Work

This one literally does not exist. Consider using it — and sharing any NSFW content — on a corporate account with caution.

NYT: Name your trade.

Used in groups and forums where people exchange ideas. Many people have been led to believe that The New York Times is in high demand.

Original content (OC)

Another way to demonstrate that you are sharing your own content rather than someone else's ideas or words. Essentially the inverse of RT. Sharing a photo you took on Twitter, for example, would be OC. Sharing someone else's photo would not be acceptable.

Working from home (WFH)

This acronym, unsurprisingly, gained a lot of traction during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is commonly used in online chats with colleagues, but it can also be useful in social media.

SMH: Shaking my head.

When it's necessary, let people know you're unimpressed or incredulous, and possibly shaking your head behind that screen.

TBH: To Be Honest

This social media abbreviation, like IMO, is used to show vulnerability, as a humble flex, to share an opinion, or to show whether you agree or disagree with something.

TBT: Throwback Thursday

This, like FBF, is a social media-designated day of nostalgia.

TFTF: Thanks For The Follow.

 This social media abbreviation is a positive way to interact with someone who has recently started following you on social media.

TFW: That Feeling When

That feeling comes before a relatable experience and is usually accompanied by a meme.

TGIF: Thank God It's Friday because everyone is getting ready for the weekend.

TL;DR: Too long. Didn't read it.

Typically used to provide a succinct summary of something that is too long for Internet attention spans. Or it's the summary typed before or after the lengthy explanation, similar to the Coles Notes version of a social media caption.

Way Back Wednesday

On this hump day, Wayback Wednesday takes a trip down memory lane.

WCW: Woman Crush Wednesday

A weekly celebration of a self-identifying woman, usually on Instagram, for whatever reason! MCM stands for Man Crush Monday. WCW can be used as a hashtag or in a caption.

Abbreviations or Acronyms for business social media

B2B stands for business-to-business.

Shorthand for a business that provides products or services to other businesses (rather than individuals).

B2C stands for business to consumer.

Describes a company that sells products or services to customers directly.

CMGR stands for Community Manager.

Community managers manage a brand's social media relationships. Community managers, not to be confused with social media managers, engage and nurture the company's community.

CTA stands for "call to action."

A call to action can be verbal, written, or visual. It tells people what to do next, whether it's "Sign up," "Subscribe," or "Call us today."

EOD: End of the day

Usually to demonstrate a deadline. "Please return this report to me by EOD Monday," for example.

EOW stands for the end of the week.

The same as above, but for the week's end (TGIF).

EM: Email me.

There is no need to book another Zoom meeting. This can be determined in writing.

ETA stands for "Estimated Time of Arrival."

When estimating when a deliverable is due, this abbreviation is used. "What's the ETA on that blog post we're waiting on?" for example.

F2F stands for face-to-face.

When arranging a face-to-face meeting, this acronym is used. "Rather than another Zoom meeting, let's schedule something in person," for example.

IAM: In a meeting

An abbreviation indicating that now is not the best time to buy a phone call or an endless barrage of text messages. You're very busy!

ISO: In Search Of

Frequently used in forums and groups where items are sought, sold, or exchanged.

IT stands for information technology.

When you are experiencing technical difficulties, you should contact this department (after you try turning it off and on again).

KPI stands for key performance indicators.

A key performance indicator is a metric that measures how effectively a company achieves its objectives.

MoM stands for Month over Month.

Used to demonstrate growth or quantitative changes that occur every four weeks. Changes in revenue, active users, page views, or sign-ups are common examples. YoY stands for year over year. This compares data over 12 months rather than 4 weeks and measures the same quantitative metrics.

OOO stands for "out of office."

Typically included in an automated email, scheduled to be sent when someone knows they will be out of the office for a holiday, business travel, or an extended workshop. "I will try to get back to you by Monday as I will be OOO for the next three days on vacation," for example.

P/E stands for Price to Earnings.

A ratio or metric that investors and business analysts frequently use to determine the value of a company.

ROI stands for return on investment.

ROI measures the amount of profit generated by specific corporate initiatives. ROI is one of the most common metrics used by businesses to evaluate the success of campaigns and ventures.

SEM stands for search engine marketing.

Search engine marketing is a type of online advertising. It entails paying for ads on search engines in order to increase website traffic.

SEO stands for search engine optimization.

The goal of search engine optimization is to improve organic search engine results and increase the visibility of web content.

SERP stands for search engine results page.

These are the paid and organic page results that a search engine displays after a user conducts a search.

Specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timely (SMART) goals

Goal-setting is a common business acronym. It reminds the person setting the goals to make them measurable and attainable.

SMB stands for small and medium-sized businesses.

Small businesses are defined as those with fewer than 50 employees. Midsize (or medium-sized) businesses typically employ fewer than 250 people. They are also known as small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs).

SMM stands for social media marketing.

The practice of increasing brand awareness and consideration on social media with the goal of generating leads and building relationships.

SMO stands for social media optimization.

Social media optimization ensures that the right platforms are used for brand marketing. It is similar to SMM.

SoLoMo stands for social, local, and mobile.

The convergence of mobile and locally targeted social media marketing has grown in popularity as a result of geo-location technology.

SRP stands for Social Relationship Platform.

An SRP is a centralized platform that uses enterprise-grade technology to enable businesses to publish on multiple social media sites while also monitoring, moderating, and analyzing their activity.

TBD means "to be decided/determined."

When the information you require is unknown, use this acronym, as in "Cake for Alyssa's birthday on Thursday!" "Flavor to be determined."

TOS stands for Terms of Service.

The terms of service are the legal guidelines that users agree to follow in order to use a social platform.

UGC stands for user-generated content.

User-generated content is any content, including posts, images, or videos, created by platform users rather than brands.

WOM stands for word of mouth.

Word-of-mouth marketing is the viral spread of brand conversation online as a result of a company's active encouragement.

Social Media Technical Abbreviations:

API: An API is an application programming interface.

An API is a collection of tools, definitions, and protocols that enable software developers to connect one system to another. Google Maps, for example. APIs for web browser and app integration is available, allowing different companies to integrate map technology.

CMS stands for Content Management System.

A content management system (CMS) is a platform for creating and managing digital content. WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal are examples of popular content management systems.

CPC stands for Cost Per Click.

The amount paid by an advertiser for each click earned on a campaign.

Conversion rate (CR):

The conversion rate is the percentage of people who took an action as a result of your campaigns, such as views, registrations, downloads, or purchases. Conversions are an important metric to consider when calculating ROI.

CRO stands for Conversion Rate Optimization.

Conversion rate improvements have been implemented.

CTR stands for Click-Through Rate.

A click-through rate is the percentage of people who click on a link after being presented with the option.

Customer Experience (CX)

Customer experience refers to a customer's interaction and touchpoints with a company. Mapping out the customer journey is a good way to ensure that a customer has a positive experience with your company.

ESP: Email Service Provider

An ESP is a third-party company that provides email services such as newsletter deployment or marketing campaigns. MailChimp, Constant Contact, and Drip are examples of popular companies.

FTP: File Transfer Protocol

A method of transferring or copying files between computers. Typically used for file transfer between a network server and a client's computer. This is one of the simplest methods of file transfer — and also one of the oldest, as it occurred before the internet.

GA stands for Google Analytics.

Google Analytics is a website analytics platform. It enables marketers to monitor website visitors, referrals, bounce rates, and other metrics.

We show you how to set up Google Analytics and use it to track the social media success of your brand.

IM stands for Instant Messaging.

Immediately sending a typed message to someone else's computer. You can, for example, send an IM via Slack, Google Hangout Conversations, or Skype chat.

OS stands for Operating System.

The computer, tablet, or smartphone software. For example, when you receive an iPhone notification to update to iOS 16, you are updating the operating system that runs your smartphone.

Page views, or PV

Page views are a count of the number of visits to a specific online page. Along with unique page views, overall page view statistics are frequently maintained.

Rich site summary (RSS)

Real Simple Syndication, or RSS, is a format used to distribute web content. (By doing so, it means making material from one website accessible to another.) To reach a large audience, podcasts, blogs, and publishers rely on RSS feeds to distribute their material.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

Customers can access cloud-based apps online under the term "software as a service." It is also referred to as "on-demand software" or "software plus services" at times. Examples include Hootsuite, email, and calendar apps.

Share of Voice (SOV)

Share of voice quantifies how much exposure a business has in comparison to its rivals. On the other hand, the social share of voice, which is based on a social dialogue about a business, gauges brand exposure.

UX: User Experience

the user-facing, visually appealing portion of a system. In essence, it's the meeting place of machines and people.

Uniform Resource Locator (URL)

A URL is a website or page's universal resource locator. The blog at https://blog.hootsuite.com/social-media-acronyms-marketers-know/ is where this article is located.

UV: Unique Views

The number of distinct viewers of a website, movie, or image is referred to as unique views. For instance, if one user reads the same article on a website ten times, that counts as ten page views and one unique view.

UX: User Experience

User experience in digital design looks at how well users interact with platforms like websites or applications. Understanding consumers' values, requirements, capabilities, and barriers are the goal of good user experience design.

VPN: Virtual private network.

a private network that, as opposed to being a public network, provides an encrypted connection to give the user online privacy. A VPN could be used to shield the user from spyware or hackers.

Gen Z Abbreviations or Acronyms for Social Media:

Gen Z is thought to have a spending power of around $143 billion, which is a substantial sum of money. Furthermore, Gen Zers are recognized for matching their spending to their principles, so this is the perfect opportunity to be relatable. These are the acronyms that Gen Z is now utilizing.

Information (411)

You are aware of the situation if you have the 411.

AF: As f—-

I should add something to emphasize how hungry I am.

Away From Keyboard (AFK)

used to inform recipients that there might be a brief delay in receiving a response to their message because, well, you're not now at your keyboard or online.

BAE: Before Anyone Else

a phrase of endearment for a person's buddy, crush, or relationship.

 BC: Because

Since BC is simply simpler.

BFF: Best Friends Forever

An abbreviation indicating a person is a very, very close friend. the very best.

FGS: For Goodness Sake,

Pure and simple frustration

F—- my life, or FML.

Frequently used before or after a sad anecdote.

Greatest Of All Time, or GOAT

This social media abbreviation honors the top talent in each industry. Not everybody is chosen to be the GOAT. For instance, Simone Biles is the all-time greatest gymnast.

HMU: Hit Me Up.

Call me, send me a message, enter my DMs, etc.

IDK: I Don't Know

If you don't understand what this means, I'm not sure how to help.

IDGI: I Don't Get It

An abbreviation that conveys uncertainty.

ILY: I Love You.

Additionally known as ILU. Emojis for a kiss and a heart are also appropriate.

JK: Just Kidding

When the joke isn't immediately clear, this is a good addition.

JTM: Just The Messenger 

A shorthand way to say that the information you're delivering is not coming from you. Used frequently on message boards and in groups.

KK: Okay

an expression for "cool," "all good," or "I get it." However, by typing KK, you convey that you are relaxed with that choice. You're careless.

LOL: Laugh Out Loud

since your laughter is not audible to us online.

Love Of My Life (LOML)

Another colloquial expression of affection (used mostly in romantic and platonic contexts; avoid using it around your employer).

LMAO: Laughing My As_ Out

when simply laughing isn't enough. or when something truly amuses you.

MRW: My Reaction When

A social media abbreviation that's most frequently used in conjunction with an image or GIF to convey your feelings.

NVM: Never Mind

Put it out of your mind.

Obvs: Obvious Of course

Also used is obvi, obviously.

OH: Over Head

precedes a direct quote or paraphrasing that was overheard.

Oh My God, or OMG

It also helps to say "Oh my gosh."

OMW: On My Way

a shorthand for meeting up with someone or for generally indicating that you're moving around.

Pls: please.

Pls: Please.

Point of view (POV)

This phrase has been around for a while, but it gained popularity on TikTok in particular since producers often treat the camera like a person and give viewers that person's perspective.

PSA: Public Service Announcement

a means of disseminating information deemed important to the wider audience.

RN: Right Now

A current state of mind, as in "So hungry RN." Additionally, you could inquire WYD RN? (What are you doing at this moment?)

ROTFL: Rolling On The Floor Laughing

A full notch higher than LMAO

Seriously For Serious Doubt: SRSLY.

TMI: Too Much Information

used before divulging excessive details (e.g., "this may be TMI, but..."). Or to say to someone, "That's disgusting! TMI!”This phrase has been around for a while, but it gained popularity on TikTok in particular since producers often treat the camera like a person and give viewers that person's perspective.

TTKU: Try To Keep Up

is frequently used in a snarky manner to call someone out when they don't process a joke or a truth quickly enough.

TY: Or, Thank You.

WBU: What About You

"I'm doing fine, WBU," how about you?"

WDYM: What Do You Mean

An acronym that conveys that you don't fully understand what is happening at the moment. Someone must provide clarification for you.

What the f—-, or WTF

I mean, WTF. It is also possible to use simply TF.

You Only Live Once, or YOLO.

YOLO was frequently used to demonstrate that you were living your greatest life just a few years ago. Nowadays, it's generally used ironically—cringe—in its classic Gen Z fashion.

YW: You're Welcome

Use only as many letters as necessary to avoid mentioning them.

Your brand will be one step closer to social media success if you can master these acronyms.

Okay, everyone, the class has now officially been dismissed. right now. You've been working so hard, get a snack.

DYK Ikonerx assists brands in improving audience engagement on social media? Reach out to us now

Photo by Alexander Suhorucov (Pexels)