Social media can be a slippery slope, eh? We’ve all been too aware of the ‘over-sharer’, right? The friend who can’t help but keep us updated on every minute aspect of her life, regardless of importance or situation. She also likely doesn’t care who she throws under the bus in the process.
But what about if you’re using social media to grow your brand? How much of your life should you share on your social media platform? I know there have been several times I’ve found a small company I really enjoy but once I went to follow them on social media I saw that they didn’t use their platform to promote their product at all. Very often, bloggers write me & ask if they should start a second Instagram account because they want to start a blog or new business & they aren’t sure how to best use the platform.
Here’s the stark reality. Unless you are like, a Kardashian or infinitely famous person on another social media platform your social media account will be best served (& most likely to increase) if you are using it solely to promote your blog, brand or business. People probably don’t care you found a rock in your shoe or you used a straw for your soda or got a letter addressed to your neighbor. Think about if you didn’t know yourself. Would you care what a stranger’s socks looked like? Probably not. Unless, they were the most beautifully crafted, exquisite socks, taken in the most amazing & creatively styled manner.
If you want to grow your community you must be unique. You must create your own voice. You must carve out your own special niche that no one else has. People want to know you. Unless you’re Macy’s or Amazon, most people assume you have a face behind your business & a heart & they want to see both those things (just go easy with the selfies, ok?). But how much is too much? At what point are you now the over sharer or simply sharing parts of your life your community doesn’t care about? At what point are you actually turning potential clients, brands, etc away because you’re posting too much of your personal life on social media?
You already know your images should be amazing & you should be sharing content from your heart that’s true to your voice, it’s where the line ends between personal life & brand that can get blurred & that’s where people start to get confused.
So what’s the best practice? How much of your personal life should you share if you’re trying to use social media to grow your online community? These are the 3 questions you can ask yourself before posting personal information on social media:
SHARING YOUR PERSONAL LIFE ON SOCIAL MEDIA
1. IS IT TRUE TO YOUR VOICE/BRAND/NICHE?
This should be question numero uno! Yes, it’s awesome your kid lost his first tooth! Yes, it’s awesome your trash man swung back around even though you didn’t get your bin to the curb on time! Does anyone else care??? Does that help grow your brand? Only you know the answer to this question. If you write about life with kids, then yes, it totally makes sense people would want to cheer on that first loose tooth. If you’re the snarky, witty mom who always seems to be running behind or in some sort of pickle, yes, share the trash man story. Staying true to your voice & brand doesn’t mean you share less day to day stories with people. It means you only share stories that matter in the scope of your brand. Be selective.
2. IS IT OF VALUE?
After you’ve determined your post is most definitely on brand & in your truest voice, the next question should be, is it of value? Here’s the reason I say this. Sometimes, it seems people post things out just to post them. I’ve been guilty of this myself. I would encourage you to not be one of those people. Quality should always be over quantity. Maybe you have a funny story you want to share but your community isn’t your best girlfriend who always answers no matter what time you call. Give them a professional courtesy & honor them for who they are. Any time you post you should be giving people something of value. Maybe it’s a relatable struggle your audience can identify with. Maybe it’s a tip for busy moms. Maybe your purpose is literally just to provide beauty in the form of imagery to your audience. Whatever the reason, make sure your post is of value & something your community actually cares about.
3. IS IT NICE?
Gosh, I can’t help but throw this in there. Probably because I have seen too many occasions of people who love to use social media as either a soapbox or a complaint form. Everyone has issues. Yep, even me. You’ll likely not see me moaning about them over on Instagram though because it’s just not appropriate & I don’t enjoy stirring a pot. Unless it’s a pot of soup. I save those conversations for my BFF. I think this especially goes for those of us who have kiddos. I would excercise caution when posting things, especially negative things, about your kids. Even if they are relatable. Even if your brand is the ‘all too real mom who never holds back’. Ask yourself, does this post honor the person, place or thing about talking about? Would or could they be hurt by my words, now or in the future? Does this embarrass someone? If you have to ask yourself if your post is nice, it’s likely you already know the answer.
Do you have any tips to add? How much of your personal life do you share on social media?435