The DOs and DON’Ts of Social Media

DOs and DON'Ts

Thanks to the internet, there are now a wide range of social media celebrities all seeking their claim to fame. With this influx of authors, YouTubers, podcasters, and bloggers, social media as a marketing platform has become more important than ever. Unfortunately, most people are ill-equiped to handle the attention and backlash that can come from posting their thoughts and opinions. In fact, these internet sensations can quickly lose followers and supporters with the most innocent of comments. I’m not afraid to say that I have stopped supporting a huge chunk of indie authors based solely on how they behave on FB.

With that said, below is a short list of basic DOs and DON’Ts when it comes to posting on social media. Most of these are geared more towards writers, but the basic principles still apply to most artistic mediums across the board. This list is not intended to be a comprehensive list, but will give some basic guidelines.

DO “like” other people’s posts, share posts, comment on posts, & be social with your network.

DON’T expect other people to “like”, comment, & share your posts when you can’t be bothered to do the same. Social media is a two way street. These days, people expect everyone in the entertainment biz to not only be accessible, but also to be socially involved with their audience.

DO celebrate your milestones & accomplishments with a happy dance or a quick status update.

DON’T keep a running tally on FB of your current Amazon ranking. Seriously. When was the last time you saw Anne Rice screenshot her Amazon ranking?

DO excuse yourself from social media when you have a family emergency or just need some “you” time.

DON’T use said emergency or hard times as an excuse to guilt-trip your audience into buying whatever it is you are selling. If you want a guaranteed way to cause people to black-list your ass, then start using a sob story as a business ploy.

DO get a second, third, or fourth job to help pay your bills.

DON’T use your passion as another business ploy to sell crap. Seriously. We all have bills to pay and we all want to use our talents & passions as a way to pay our bills. Even the brightest of celebrity stars had to work outside their passion to keep food in their stomachs while they pounded the pavement during their off time.

DO listen to veterans who have been in the industry. They are a wealth of information & can really help you along the way.

DON’T assume you know everything. Even veterans can learn something new.

DO treat others with kindness.

DON’T be a total jerk when you disagree with someone. You never know who is actually behind that computer screen or how much pull they have in the real world.

DO help others out.

DON’T be a jackass & only help those who help you first. You never know when that person you helped might suddenly have some serious pull in your industry & can in turn help make your dreams a reality.

DO share content from 3rd party sources.

DON’T make self-promotion your only interaction.

DO post your material in FB groups & communities according to their guidelines.

DON’T post promotional links to your own material on other people’s FB walls without asking permission. Their FB wall is their space. It’s considered rude and greatly frowned upon.

If you do not want links and tags to appear on your wall without checking them out first, DO set your FB settings so link posts & tags will have to be approved prior to them appearing on your FB wall.

DON’T go psycho on someone when they post a link on your FB wall. Quietly remove it if you don’t want it there and adjust your FB settings. Going off the deep end will only cause people to stop supporting you.

DO set up auto-replies on Twitter, but DON’T include a promotional link unless you are offering a freebie. In the case of bands, DON’T have every band member using the same auto-reply.

DO thank your audience and your followers. They are the only reason why you are still participating in your chosen line of entertainment.

DON’T be a jerk to your fans and ignore them. Again, these days people expect celebrities to be accessible and to actually converse with their audience. Nothing will cause supporters to turn against you quicker than for you to act like your fans owe you something.

DO share your opinion with tact and respect.

DON’T attack someone for sharing their opinion. Better yet, don’t share any type of hot-topic opinion at all. It’s safer.


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