yourself, what new connections do I hope to make and what type of content speaks to those audiences? What groups of people do I want to engage professionally? What are my current professional challenges and who can help me overcome them? If you approach these questions methodically and strategically, not only will you find a meaningful audience, but you will discover other like-minded producers with whom you can engage and grow your network.
PICK THE RIGHT PLATFORM
LEARN THE RULES
CRAFT A STRATEGY THAT FITS YOU
Congratulations. You’ve defined your target audience and you have a goal! Now you need to identify the best social media platform based on where your audience congregates. You can’t jump in to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Snapchat, Linkedin, and G+ all at once and expect to be successful. Social media requires too much time, and we’re all too busy to be everywhere at once. It’s better to commit to one or two social media platforms and do them really well. I personally find Instagram to be the best platform for me because it’s filled with people sharing inspiring visual work. If you feel drawn to a particular social platform, chances are it’s the right one for you. Jane Owen is a successful publicist who helps her clients manage their social media presence. She works with clients on every platform, but she’s tactical about her personal social media use. Rather than expend endless time and energy curating a presence everywhere, she focuses on Instagram and Facebook. Jane warned me that it’s better to have nothing on social media than an account that is done badly or that looks and feels unprofessional. So keep those inappropriate hot tub pics off of your professional accounts.
LEARN THE RULES Once you find the best platform for you, it’s time to start firing off those hot political takes, right? Maybe. But first, consider the advice John Heinsen gave me. Heinsen runs Bunnygraph Entertainment and is the former Chair of the PGA’s New Media Council. He suggested I think of each social media platform as a different casino game in Las Vegas. If you were going to strike up a conversation with the players at the nickel slot machines, would you approach them the same way you approach the players at the high stakes poker tables? Heinsen explained that before you can be successful at any social platform, you need to learn the rules of that platform. “Every social platform has a different language and a rhythm to it,” he reminds me, “so you can’t just take the same photo and slap it everywhere.” A post that works well on Instagram may not work as well on Twitter or Facebook because the language and expectations of those social platforms are different. Learning the rules means knowing how often and what type of content you should post. It means learning how to tone your posts to fit the culture of that specific platform. It informs the length of each post and how you engage others. A good way to begin learning the rules is to identify the people you admire and analyze what they’re doing. Understanding the rules positions you to succeed within the social media community you’ve chosen. If you don’t bother to learn
The Official Magazine of the Producers Guild of America