Social media is the foundation upon which my career is built. I was digitally native 5 years before the term was even coined. Since I graduated in 2004, social media has been integral to my business development, learning and marketing strategy.
It’s also made me frighteningly unproductive, almost certainly affected my mental health for the worse and inhaled hours of time I could’ve spent learning to speak Mandarin or do a proper handstand.
With 1/7 of the global population logging onto Facebook every day, there’s little chance you can avoid something our industry appears to adore. If you’re going to do social media, you may as well do it well.
There’s nowhere better to start than getting started, so here’s my guide to the most popular social platforms.
1. FxxK Facebook
Seriously, don’t waste your time. Facebook have been throttling reach for years now meaning, you have to pay if you want your content seen. This is heartbreaking if you’ve built up fan pages with 1000s of likes only to see your content reaching a (literal) handful of fans. If you haven’t started building a Facebook following, don’t bother. Your energies will be rewarded elsewhere.
2. Twitter & Instagram FTW
Social media is all about options and as creative types, we’ve had our fair share in the past few years. Anyone remember Ello? Path? Google Wave? Exactly. By all means try something new, you never know what’s going to stick. Just don’t forget that we mostly congregate on Twitter and Instagram, and for very good reason.
Twitter’s a gateway to your blog, your network and your deepest thoughts. 140 characters keeps you succinct (there’s also an argument for the character limit being the root of our limited attention span). Conversations are quick fire and due to Twitter’s relative popularity (304 million monthly active users) there’s a chance you could be speaking to anyone, at any time.
Personally, I adore Twitter because of its democratic nature. Anyone can have a voice and, as a community we tend to reward quality. This isn’t quite the same with all creative communities, as anyone who’s even glanced at #gamergate will attest to. However, we designers don’t seem to behave too badly.
At the opposite end of the content spectrum is Instagram, which is essentially, just a load of photos. Let’s not forget we’re first and foremost a visual industry. It’s only natural Instagram will be our social media of choice. There’s little more to say about Instagram than #go #easy #blessed #on #the #lovinglife #hashtags.
3. The other ones
I started blogging on Tumblr because it was the first platform I looked at. As Well Made’s readership has grown, I’ve realised it may not be ideal for a growing design studio. A high percentage of my 6000+ followers are teenagers while my long form blogging style goes against Tumblr’s image bias. Despite that, I love Tumblr. It feels like I’m reading a teenager’s diary. Plus, there’s always the risk of stumbling across some arty porn.
We don’t Dribbble because as a studio, we try to keep the amount of other designer’s work we ingest to a minimum. Also, I asked some Twitter pals what they thought of the site and Studio Mister told me “it’s a fucking travesty” which confirms some deep rooted fears I have about the site.
I’m also aware that Pinterest drives a decent chunk of traffic to Well Made’s website. However, I’m too busy to work out the point of Pinterest. If someone else has, can you please write a blog about it and @ me please.