How to keep personal and professional social media in perfect balance
Jill Pavlov Vazquez is a copywriter at Ready for Social and owner of Your Creative Concierge, a full service copywriting shop. Her work has been featured in magazines, national campaigns, and popular blogs. She also performs comedy and can be found on Instagram at @yourcreativeconcierge.
How do I separate work and personal life on social media? It’s a question that many people in this increasingly digital age find difficult to answer. The line between personal and professional becomes very blurry when you throw social media in the mix, and in order to keep your work-life balance in check, you’ve absolutely got to make a distinction between the two. How you present yourself online is how people will perceive your business, and you get control of that all-important messaging and presence.
Before we get into some pro tips on social media balance, we’ll touch on why it’s important to keep personal and professional separate. It is, of course, everyone’s own choice whether they want to make that distinction, but let’s face it: no one wants to get canceled. Keeping the two as one, you run the risk of a personal view speaking for your business. However innocent it may seem, the internet is quite like the wild west and somewhat unforgiving, so we believe it is always best to err on the side of caution. Just as you wouldn’t show up to a business meeting in pajamas, you’ve got to put your best face forward on the internet. Although it takes more effort to keep the two apart, it is worth the freedom.
Keep your social marketing messaging consistent
Besides possible offensive messaging, you also risk muddling your message. In business, you need a clear, concise plan of action, and throwing too many personal anecdotes into the mix can work against you. Business owners understand the importance of target demographics, and having completely different profiles for the business allows them to specifically market to that audience instead of the broad audience of friends, family, acquaintances, etc. When you build those followers, you don’t want to confuse and possibly lose them, so keeping that messaging consistent for them is key. Your business’s followers have expectations for what they plan to see and get out of your content. Changing that up could have negative effects.
Keep Facebook digital marketing separate
Facebook makes it simple because it basically consists of two separate platforms: Facebook profiles and Pages. Pages is the appropriate spot to promote your business, even if your business is you as a person. You can even like, comment and message from your business page in order to interact with the public. Pages is an amazing feature for professional use because you’ll receive a wide array of analytics from Facebook to improve engagement. You can also take advantage of their ads (as with Instagram) to specifically target your audience. Your personal Facebook profile, on the other hand, should be limited to people you actually know in real life – there’s no rule stating that you have to accept every friend request!
Have a distinct account for your social selling
Although there is no feature like this yet for Twitter or Instagram, there is a simple way to divide your personal and professional: creating two separate profiles. Your personal profile should be set to private so that only people you accept will be able to see your posts. Instagram has a “close friends” feature that enhances the privacy level of your account by allowing the user to hand-select who sees certain content they are pushing. Instagram also allows you to set up your page as a business, which will provide you with valuable insights and statistics on who is interacting with your brand.
Social selling on LinkedIn
As for LinkedIn, we recommend keeping this platform strictly professional, as it is what the intended networking function is rooted in. It’s important to note the tone and imagery you are using, as you are speaking as yourself on this platform. If you wouldn’t say it to a client directly – don’t post it on LinkedIn.
Putting together your social marketing
If it seems intimidating to keep track of so many different accounts across all these platforms, we recommend a social profile manager – there are many different websites and software programs to help you stay on top of and organize all of your content. Once you’ve formed a plan for your content, you may even see that it’s even easier and more simple to keep the two accounts separate, so it actually works to your advantage.
The end result
When everything in the world has come to revolve around social media, it’s definitely not easy to always keep the worlds of personal and professional apart, but in doing so, we believe you’ll find an increased freedom and clearer messaging.
What’s your go-to trick for keeping personal social media separate from your professional life?