At no time in my memory of the age of social media has the current circumstances of our world divided so many.
Insults, name-calling, derision, and ugliness abound.
Focusing on the ‘good’ or ‘positive’ is being seen as having your head in the sand or not being realistic.
Focusing on the problems is an open invitation for arguments and heated exchanges.
Even silence is judged with condemnation and anger.
A simple opinion or comment devolves into a running commentary on your IQ, your parentage, and where you’re going in the afterlife.
Forget a thick skin…you need a full body armor suit when you wade into the social media fray…or even if you don’t.
How do you navigate the turbulent waters of the social media landscape without capsizing or moving to a desert island?
It really depends on you.
What will help and guide you in deciding that (the oars and compass if you will) are a couple of things:
Your Core Values
Your level of discernment
The boundaries you establish between you personally and your Personal Brand
For some people, the answer is a much needed and necessary break from social media…however long that break may be. Often these people don’t have a ‘stake’ in social media…in other words, there isn’t a great investment of time, effort, and energy. They are there to interact with friends and family and most of the time they can do that through other means than social media. Personal Brand equity and relationships aren’t really a priority.
For most of us who are entrepreneurs and business owners, this isn’t really an option, so we have to decide what is acceptable and what is not within the parameters of how we want to be perceived.
Do not confuse this with being authentic and genuine.
It’s crucial to know who your Right People and what they expect from you. I’ve seen coaches who have made their political beliefs known and have gone to a great deal of effort to encourage respectful discourse and dialog. Mind you it hasn’t always worked (it takes both sides after all), but I believe they went into it with clear eyes and an open heart.
On the other hand, I’ve seen angry tirades, relentless arguments, caustic comments…and the level of insults are mindboggling. I’ve seen coaches who call others idiots, go on rants that are full of spite and hate towards those who have different beliefs than theirs.
I don’t know if this helps or hurts their business, but I know who I’d choose to work with whatever their political beliefs are.
As an Alchemist, I move in the waters of ‘no absolutes’, but I want to ask you this:
Is this helping or hurting your Personal Brand and as a result, your business?
Are you cultivating trust and building relationships, or have you turned people completely off by the tone and language of your Brand Voice?
I don’t know…every situation is unique of course, but it’s important to remember that your digital footprint…and the impact and influence of your Personal Brand doesn’t go away.
This isn’t a judgment or indictment one way or the other of what you are putting out in the world…you are at choice, and if it works for your Brand…not only should you keep at it, but for the love of anything, amplify it!
But what is important to remember is that what you put out in the world as it falls under the umbrella of your Personal Brand is also what you live with as it applies to your business and livelihood.
A careless tweet, a nasty comment on Facebook, a provocative picture on Instagram…all of these have a ripple effect and it’s up to you to manage your reputation and Personal Brand credibility. One thoughtless post can ruin brand equity that took years to build.
Know yourself and know your Personal Brand…your business depends on it.