You’ve been invited to a party! But not just any party, you have been invited to the hottest ticket in town. Everyone you know will be there. Friends and family are sure to be in attendance, but there are also people on the guest list with whom you have been trying to connect for some time.
Whether you are looking forward to meeting your readers, networking with fellow authors, or trying to get some time with publishers, agents, or marketing personnel, you know the way you present yourself at this event is sure to set the tone for how you are perceived in the future. There is a lot to be said for how you carry yourself in public, and can often times overshadow the caliber of your work. The publishing community is filled with excellent writing and original stories. What it desires is to champion those who not only put out great work, but are great people to work with, and putting yourself out there at events such as these is a sure-fire way to guarantee you are made known to the world. But what if I told you that you didn’t need to attend every networking event in order to have this type of impact? While these gatherings are certainly important, they are not the only way to put yourself in the limelight. What if I told you that you can garner notoriety without leaving your own home? If an author is dedicated to their social media management and looks at it as an ongoing networking convention, the impact of their presence will consistently grow, getting their work out in front of more readers, peers, and industry professionals than they ever thought possible. Well it’s true. Welcome to the party that is social media.
When you’re getting ready to go out, what are the first things you do to get ready? I always make sure I look my best by wearing a flattering outfit and doing my make-up so it highlights my best features but, with social media, your party outfit layout and design of your social media platforms. Do you have images on your profile that represent you and your work? Are these images well made and clear for your viewers? Are you happy with the way your pages are organized? All these questions are important to ask yourself when your social media presence. I find the best business pages are clean and clear; meaning their image portrays a very clear idea or product, and there is no question to the purpose of the profile. Simply posting images and text to fill the space is like throwing on the first semi-clean item of clothing you can find on the floor to attend a business meeting. You can do it, but it’s not the best idea.
Think of your social media platform as an item of clothing—something you would be proud to wear out and feel confident in—allowing for a confident mindset to settle over the idea of creating pages for your brand.
When you arrive at the event, there are several different approaches one can take to socialize. Some feel the need to be the center of the attention by any means necessary. One minute they telling an endearing tale of how much they love their precious children and in the very same breath start demeaning a fellow party-goer. These attendees love to talk about anything and everything, often over-sharing details about personal matters. It may appear effective, but this method of socializing hurts more than it helps. While they indeed succeeded in being the center of the party, it can never be certain which actions sparked the wide-spread attention. This stereotype can very easily be applied to social media management. While posting everything that comes to mind—good, bad, and ugly—may secure a larger number of followers than someone who does not share details on every aspect of their lives, there is no clear way to know what drew the to their site. The goal should always be to put yourself out there by way of showcasing your work and the portions of your life lived surrounding that work. It is not a place to dump posts about anything and everything in the hopes that one post may strike a large reaction. When it comes to how you communicate on your professional pages and profiles, it is always best to say less and stay on-task to spam your profiles with information that has nothing to do with your work. By creating posts that are irrelevant to who you are as a professional, you are muddying the purpose of your page. Soon, your followers will no longer understand what information they are coming to you for, and will ultimately become less interested or disengaged from your posts all together.
Another sub-sect of party goers who afraid to approach anyone for fear of making a bad impression. These types tend to attach themselves to the fringe of the party, not too far away as to be out of earshot of any conversations, but far enough away that they don’t appear to be easily approachable. While it is always important to be with other’s impressions, it is an entirely different scenario when one is paralyzed by the fear of being misunderstood or rejected. This approach is widely taken by those who are afraid of messing up their creative persona. By refusing to put yourself out there, you are denying your potential readers the opportunity to not only fall in love with your work, but to learn more about the person who penned their favorite stories and their treasured characters to life. It is without a doubt to open yourself up to the vulnerabilities created by a society that is able to access the inner parts of our creativity with the stroke of only a few keys, but it is worth it once you are able to target the correct audience.
These two types of party people are the two most common personality types seen on social media today. Both approaches are easily identified by their mistakes, but should also be credited for the things they do right. Those who are abrasive on social sites are showing their dedication to their presence, even though it may be unfocused and convoluted. Those who are too afraid to press the post button after several rewrites of a single status update demonstrate how it is important to curate everything that is posted on their social media platforms, they just happen to take that caution a bit too far.
If we could take the best of both of these concepts, a very successful social media presence can be formed and maintained. It is all about finding the bright spots in your life and in your work. To shy away from the things that may make you mad or the quietest doubts deep within your heart is to begin a new journey to social media success.
Now that you have been given some guidelines about how to get the most out of the party, I can’t wait to see you there.
The Moral Of Our Stories