From Facebook to Snapchat, it seems like everybody uses social media these days. Social media isn’t just popular for personal use; it’s also a useful tool for online marketing. Your clients might want you to create social posts that they can publish or even have you publish the posts on their accounts, so it’s a good idea to pick up some social media marketing skills. But even if you’re not interested in that type of marketing for work, you should still think about your personal social media profiles and what they’re saying about you.
Consider Public vs. Private
You used to simply be able to make your social media accounts private and not have to worry about potential employers or clients seeing them. These days, having no searchable social media accounts can be a cause of concern for people who might want to work with you or have you work for them. Potential clients want to see your online presence, so it is important to have social media accounts that they’ll be able to find. You don’t have to completely censor yourself, though! Consider having a public account and a private account for your favorite social media platforms. If you like to use Twitter to share jokes with friends, keep that account private and create a new account that will be better for your professional image. This way, potential clients will be able to find the online profiles that you want them to and they won’t be left wondering why you have no online presence.
Think Like a Client
No matter what social media platforms you use, if they are public, then you should assume that any potential clients will be able to see them. This is why it’s important to think like a client when you post anything online. As a freelancer, your online presence plays an important role in your reputation and your overall brand. You can use this tool to brand yourself so that you are most appealing to the types of clients you are most interested in working for. Before you post something, think about how a potential client would feel if they saw it or read it. Would they find it interesting? Would they think it’s inappropriate? Taking the time to ask yourself these questions will help you make sure you’re only posting content that will enhance your online image instead of hurting it.
Don’t Forget About Photos
You probably won’t just be posting text on your social media profiles—you’ll also be posting photos. Whether you use Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, or all of the above, you’ll want to think about what types of pictures you’re putting out there for the public to see. If potential clients see your pictures, will they find them inappropriate for any reason? It is best to avoid posting any pictures, memes, or GIFs that might be viewed as inappropriate by some on your public social media profiles. These images will be associated with your name and your brand, so you don’t want to offend or put off any potential employers. It is also important to post quality pictures of yourself as your profile images, especially on more professional sites like LinkedIn. A high-quality photo of your face will look much more professional than a silly selfie or a picture with friends.
Show Off Your Work
While many people use social media for fun, you can use it to show off your writing skills to attract potential clients. You can post samples of your writing on your profiles and share links to any pieces that are available to read on websites. Instead of buying your own website and paying for web design services or trying to learn them yourself, you can use your social media profiles as landing pages that help advertise your brand. Along with your Writers Work profile, your social media accounts can be a great way to put your work out there so you can be found by employers who are interested in your skills.
One of the biggest appeals of social media is being able to connect with all types of people all over the world. Social media is a fantastic networking tool for many different professions, and it can be especially helpful for freelance writers who are their own advertisers. You can reach out to potential clients on sites like LinkedIn and like or follow their accounts on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can also make connections with other freelance writers as well as other professionals in the writing industry, allowing you to start forming relationships and learn about various networking opportunities. Start liking and commenting on posts from others to get a conversation going. When you like, follow, and interact with people on social media, they are more likely to do the same in return!
Have you ever visited a business on social media only to find that they haven’t posted anything in a few months or longer? Being inactive on social media is definitely bad for business, and the same can be true for freelance writers. If potential employers are looking at your social media accounts to get an idea of who you are and how you can help them, they might view inactivity as being unprofessional. You certainly don’t have to post multiple times a day, every day—especially if you don’t have anything good to post. But it is a good idea to try to post at least once a week or a few times a month across all of your platforms. You don’t always have to post original content, either. You can share links to articles and videos that you find interesting and relevant to your industry. You can also post questions to your friends and followers to try to get conversations started.
Your social media profiles can play an important role in your freelance writing career. If you’d like to learn more about freelancing opportunities, check out Writers Work. We offer training tools and access to writing opportunities, allowing writers of all skill levels to improve their abilities and find potential writing gigs.