New communications demystified by Joshua Munchow, APMM VP of Social Media firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcome to the APMM social media how-to!
Here is a breakdown of the social media platforms that we will be using to help promote the APMM and spread the word about model making. Also check out a few tips and tricks for using social media, along with some more detailed instructions on how to share content on each platform. Everything you need to get started!
Facebook is the oldest of the currently popular social media platforms, and it allows people to be connected to their friends and family, or if you are a business, your fans and customers. You can use Facebook to share photos, videos, music, and links to interesting things you have found, or even organize get-togethers. Facebook is most useful for creating a personal network of people that you want to keep updated on what you are doing in your life. Imagine it as the high-tech pen-pal that is always interested your adventures.
You can become friends with anyone, and you can follow your favorite companies, artists, celebrities on Facebook by “liking” their page and following their updates. The APMM is going to use Facebook to post photos of cool projects from our members and vendors, videos of how-to’s and technical content, share relevant and interesting content from around the web, and build a network of like-minded makers.
If you want to sign up and become a part of this community simply go to Facebook.com and follow the instructions for creating an account. After I introduce the other tools we use I will give a run-down of some helpful tips that will get you on your way to becoming a social media master.
Twitter is probably the easiest to use social media platform because it is limited in what it does. In simplest terms, Twitter allows you to say a little bit about something, share a link, and maybe a picture or video clip. It is all done using only 140 characters of text in a single “tweet” (what your post is called) so it is great for sharing concise information such as headlines and links to interesting content.
For this reason Twitter has become a popular source for news and entertainment for a busy lifestyle. A person can essentially scroll and read through people’s tweets and choose only that which interests them. You can “Follow” other users to have their posts added to your own Twitter feed, AKA - the place where you see everyone else’s posts/tweets.
The APMM is going to use Twitter to augment our Facebook presence with interesting bits of information, links to content, and photos to entice followers. It will also be used at times to interact live with followers when a representative is at an event.
If you want to sign up and become part of the Twitter community simply go to Twitter.com and click Sign Up to get started. Later I will tell you how easy it is to tweet and post interesting things to Twitter.
Instagram is, first and foremost, a photo and video clip sharing platform that allows people to see, literally, what you are doing. It has a variety of tools to enhance photos and videos and the most recent update has allowed up to 60 second video clips to be posted. Users can “Follow” each other to stay up to date on what is going on, and their posts will be added to your Instagram feed which is a somewhat chronological record of what has been posted by those you follow.
The strongest feature of Instagram is the hashtag (#) which functions just like keywords. They allow people to show up in searches and be aggregated into common search terms. This function originated on Twitter, and has even found its way into Facebook and many other social media platforms. It has become one of the most common ways to promote yourself online, especially since the hashtags can be used on many platforms. Instagram feeds can also be imported into your websites to provide extra exposure.
The only caveat to Instagram is that it is the only social media platform of the big three that you can only fully utilize on a smartphone. You can log in and view things, even comment, while on a PC, but to post photos and videos you must do it through the mobile application. For many this will not be an issue but it does present its own set of considerations for some people.
If you want to sign up and become part of the Instagram community simply download the app from the App Store or Google Play.
LinkedIn is considered the Facebook for professionals and in many ways it is. It presents similar capabilities as Facebook but with the added ability to connect to other professionals and share your work history and skill-set. It is also a place where colleagues can endorse each other for their work, and companies can directly search for job candidates thanks to your listed qualifications.
LinkedIn can be treated in similar ways to Facebook in a social media sense in that the APMM hosts a professional group; we can share photos, videos, stories, and links to interesting things as well as to vendors and suppliers. Of course LinkedIn is a professional development site so the much more personal details that are shared on Facebook don’t make it to LinkedIn which keeps it much more focused on business development.
The APMM will continue its presence on LinkedIn as a hub for model makers worldwide, and use it to augment our online presence with similar content sharing tactics that are used on the other social media platforms.
If you want to sign up and become part of the LinkedIn community simply go to Linkedin.com and follow the prompts to join. Out of all the social platforms, this platform is the most professionally useful community to be a member of. The others are great if you are trying to build a brand or expand your online presence, but LinkedIn is the most beneficial on a personal level regarding career and business opportunities.
The Rest Of Them
There are numerous other social media platforms, many of which resemble one of the ones I have already discussed. Currently our plan is to stick to these four and evaluate the need for any others as time progresses. If any members know of one that we clearly need to be a part of, do not hesitate to let us know! That is the point of social media, it needs to be social!