A police shooting in Dallas.
A massacre in Orlando.
A truck driving through a crowd in France.
Trump vs Clinton for President.
Right now there’s no shortage of topics in the news that people get fired up about. Some of them are devastating and heartbreaking. Some of them are mind-boggling and frustrating. All of them open the door for strong political opinion and debate.
Social media, whether we like or not, has given every one a platform. A platform to tweet. A platform to make a video. A platform to write a blog. A platform to live stream their life as it unfolds.
Platform or Soapbox
The challenge with having such a platform is learning how to use it responsibly. This becomes even more important if your platform is connected to your business.
If one tweet asks people to listen to your demo and the next tweet is derogatory against a race, inflammatory towards a particular politician or polarizing in a specific belief or view, believe me when I say that’s going to have an impact… just maybe not the impact you’re hoping for.
Venting. Ranting. Spewing. Hating. Soapboxing.
These seem to be common themes in my social streams on a daily basis now. So much so that for about a month and a half, I’ve pretty much avoided social media, or at least reading my feeds, simply to stay away from all the negativity that is being shared.
Beware What You Share
A few years ago, when I interviewed for my last radio job, I wasn’t surprised to find out that they had researched me ahead of time by browsing my Twitter stream and checking out my public Facebook Page for my then current radio show.
Companies and brands want to know who they’re associating with. They want to know people they’re doing business with, people who may be representing them, are professional individuals who aren’t going to say or do things that will cause harm or bring unwanted attention to them.
For this reason, as a professional voice actor, it’s essential that you “beware what you share.”
It’s understandable to have strong opinions. I’ll be the first to admit when I watched the situation in Dallas unfolding – as a first responder myself – I had some VERY strong opinions. Opinions I kept to myself and did not take to Facebook or Twitter to share.
Everything Doesn’t Need To Be Said Online
The next time a tragedy strikes, political drama unfolds, or a controversial topic hits the news… which happens daily, by the way, just think twice before you vent your frustrations in digital form for all the world to see.
Some of that world includes clients… or potential future clients…
Before you hit “submit” consider whether it’s something you’d want them to read and if it could be a rant that costs you an opportunity.
Then go scream into your pillow.
Do an intense workout.
Watch a cat video.
Hug your child.
Say a prayer.
Or basically do anything to help center you and calm you that doesn’t involve saying something you may one day end up regretting.
Remember… the internet lasts forever.