Personal vs. Professional on Social Media
NOTE: This blog was written for Backstage about #ActorLife. However, this advice can be applied to corporate types, too.
Are you aware casting and creatives are going to YouTube, Facebook, and other social networks to research you?
That photo of you on vacation in your bathing suit? It shows your physique. All your photos out and about with friends? They show how you might act in company housing. All the photos backstage or on set? They show that you’re a working actor.
Truth is…you need all of that. It helps tell the truth. Your truth.
What you don’t want to do is separate your personal life from your professional career. Many actors try to do this with two accounts on the same platform. What ends up happening is that you divide your fan base and double your work load!
I know we all have different comfort zones surrounding privacy. However, social media is minimizing our privacy (on a global scale). Maintaining a real personal/professional divide is increasingly difficult.
For most actors, whether you’re a novice or celebrity, I recommend one personal profile that’s as public as possible.
Why? We hire the people we know, like, and trust. As such, I don’t recommend separating your personal and professional life. You’re a public figure! Streamline your accounts when possible and stay transparent—yet conscious and strategic—with your daily life.
What you post (and what others tag you in) is very important. It’s going out to hundreds and thousands of people!
If you want your online presence to generate offline results, you have to take full control of what’s out there. How do you want to be seen? Start shaping your image with each post. Be sure to stay positive. Consider that your online presence is always auditioning.
I’m not suggesting you go scrub your social media or become sterile in your posting. I’m recommending being as public with your personal life as you’re comfortable. Transparency and authenticity are in! We all want to know the real you. Let us meet your heart and soul, your full self, the human behind that headshot.
I recommend sharing your No. 1 self through one account (on each network you choose to join). Customize the settings (such as access, tagging, messaging, etc.) to reflect your comfort zone. Keep in mind you can always block people or delete spam comments if they become an issue.
For those with Facebook fan pages and profiles, streamlining is a bit difficult. You can read my thoughts on the differences between the two here. Some may need both. For others, it may be better to kill your fan page and add followers to your Facebook profile.
The idea is to streamline when possible. It makes social media easier to manage and grow.
In terms of setting up accounts and sharing content, remember:
Personal is professional.
Professional is personal.
Nothing online is private.
Have you received a job through social media? Comment below!