My palms were sweaty, my cheeks were red, and I had goosebumps. Oh no, I thought, please no. Don’t ask.
“I was wondering if you would like to be in charge of our social media strategy for the conference?”
This is it. This is where you say no.
“Absolutely! You know, I’ve been thinking, and I actually have some ideas about how to go about it…”
What was I going to do? Say no to a big career opportunity practically being offered to me on a silver platter?
Well, yes. I probably should have. My personal experience with social media involves me occasionally faffing about on the latest blog platform of the month and refreshing the same four pages over and over. (Do you like existential crises and nihilist humour? I’ve got you covered). I’ve been using social media for as long as I can remember, and while for some companies this has them singing their rendition of Grease’s “You’re the one that I want” as they sign a big green check mark on their “Prime Job Candidate” checklist, for me it means that I know that using social media on a regular basis and actually knowing how to use it effectively are two entirely different beasts.
I’ve got chills! (They’re multiplying…)
For starters, social media is fast. It’s not just a matter of there being new content every day–refresh your page at the wrong moment and suddenly you’ve missed two celebrity divorces, a dead gorilla, a world war, and the second coming of Christ. Being able to use social media effectively means being able to stay on top of a non-stop deluge of content on multiple platforms while generating your own steady stream of #timely #relevant #relatable content. I have a hard enough time doing this for myself, let alone for an employer.
And I’m losing control…
Social media sleeps for no man. How many scandals have there been because someone posted something seemingly innocent, went to bed, and then woke up to an onslaught of bad press? It is so easy to lose control of a situation on social media because of how quickly things can go viral, and no amount of damage control can rectify that situation once it’s happened.
Cause the power you’re supplying… it’s electrifyin’!
Giving me power over your entire online brand image is an exercise in risk management. Anything I do or say using your social media could make or break your public image, however intentionally. That. Is. Terrifying.
Unfortunately, none of that stopped me from taking the job. I guess I better make like the song and listen to Sandra D.