Ten social media hints for non-celebrities

  1. As said before, you need to know why you are there, “there” meaning a specific social media, “why” meaning your detailed objectives.
  2. It is ok and even healthy to have your friends as “media friends” (the term “contact” is better), but if your chief purpose is professional, then your selection of contacts must reflect that. Sometimes you may need to let your friends know that you will need to connect with them by e-mail, personally, with a big hug, but not on facebook, for example. You have a limit of 5000 contacts in your personal profile and no limit for your fanpages. Make good use of those 5000 slots: that is how the Facebook bot will “read” you.
  3. A good idea is create a standard text to tell your friends you need their slot, if you happen to. They will understand. You can participate on friends groups, alumni groups and connect with them
  4. It is also a good idea to have a standardized text (and do work on that to make it perfect) for people who send you friend requests but do not meet the profile you want for your contacts. Keep in mind that facebook will suggest you to other people based on who is already there. That means you need to choose your contacts based on what matters to you and the variables related to that, such as interests, occupation, geographical location, language, etc.
  5. When you send anyone a friend request, send a message explaining why you are doing that. It is not only annoying, but sometimes creepy to receive friend requests from total strangers. Three lines suffice for that purpose, like “Hi So-and-so, I am a content producer and would like to keep in touch. Regards, So-and-so”
  6. When you accept a friend request, it is polite to acknowledge that and, if you have a page, use the opportunity to invite the person to check your page. After all, if (s)he was interested in you, (s)he will probably be interested in your page’s content. Keep it short: “Hi, So-and-so, thank you for connecting with me. You might want to check my page on (whatever your page is about). I hope you enjoy it. Regards, So-and-so”
  7. If on facebook, go to your profile’s “activity log”, “more”, find “friends” and check the recent ones. Log into their pages and check what’s going on. Leave a comment, like stuff, interact. This is how a network works: by interaction. Also, this is how the bot “reads” you: by your recent interactions.
  8. If on Instagram, go to your “followings”. You want to keep in touch with them. If you have many, you will miss a lot of their updates. Make sure to check them once in a while. Use iconosquare or websta for that.
  9. Avoid sending invitations to your friends to like your page. With the number of pages around, that became as annoying as spamming. You need to get their attention some other way. It takes time, but you must let your friends know that the content you share on your page is different from what you share on your profile, and is worth looking at. There are several strategies for that.
  10. By all means, avoid compulsive self-disclosure. That is a huge red flag. It tells everyone you are not professional enough in whatever you need to be professional at. Here’s a hint: you can find groups where the stuff you want to vent about is cool. Join the group. Pour out your bitter feelings where bitter feelings are welcome. Don’t do it on your profile! That doesn’t mean not being personal: being personal is great marketing. People want to see you as a real person. But exposing your resentments and unsolved business with the past is embarrassing and yes, it damages your reputation.

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