In case you haven't heard, Wednesday, June 30th is International Social Media Day! If you aren't hip to the social media scene just yet, it's time to hop on the internet and create your voice-over profiles!
More and more businesses are using social media sites, such a Facebook and Twitter, to offer promotions, and many voice-over artists are finding jobs via Twitter. If you're not visible on social media networks, there's a good chance you're missing out on some great voice over jobs!
Here are a few general guidelines to get you started, but this is by no means a comprehensive list.
1. Get out there and make friends! Create your professional voice-over actor profile on Facebook, complete with your voice over training information, demos, branding, and a way to get in contact with you. Make Facebook friends with other voice-over artists and clients. Be sure to post updates on your "wall" and give people a reason to check out your profile. Also set up a profile on Twitter, but feel free to watch the action before you start "tweeting".
2. Don't post anything you wouldn't want your mother to see ... because she probably will see it! Social media isn't just for college kids anymore. For better or for worse, Facebook is a great way for people to passively stay in touch with one another without actually ever picking up the phone. Plus, prospective employers routinely scope out applicants' Facebook profiles before hiring them. If you think your personal life and beliefs have nothing to do with your professional voice-over work, just ask Lance Baxter why he was fired by Geico.
3. Aim for 80% business, 20% personal. The percentages are somewhat arbitrary, but the point is that you want your professional profiles to look, well -- professional. Add personal information to your profile or post comments about your interests to show that you are human. Clients want to work with someone with a personality, not a machine.
4. A conversation is a two-way exchange. Two-way. Social networking is about building relationships, and relationships depend on dialogue. As someone told me on Twitter this week, his favorite social media tool is the "unfollow" tool that allows him to stop receiving updates from people who engage in "shameless self promotion". Just like no one likes a braggart in real life, it's annoying to see someone in social media only talk about themselves.
5. Stalking people via social media is a form of flattery. If you "follow" people on Twitter, subscribe to someone's blog, or just check out their Facebook page often, it means you value the content they are producing. This is a great thing! Every voiceover artist who engages in social media should be interested enough in what other voiceover pros are doing to follow them. Plus, you never know when you'll get a great idea from a fellow voice-over pro!
Can you think of any other general guidelines for networking via social media? Post them here!