The Compassionate Voice
Is Social Media Your Soap Box?
by Leesha on August 2nd, 2016

You’ve had it. Everybody is disrespecting your political candidate and you have had enough. Is it time for you to lash out on Facebook or Twitter? After all, you have a right to express yourself and opinion. But is social media the platform for your personal views? Give care to your actions and what you post on social media.
 
In this politically charged time in America, opinions are being shared everywhere. From billboards to talk shows, everybody has an opinion...and wants to be heard. I’m sure you have seen a running stream of comments on many sites with all manner or retorts. Just read them. 
 
Guard Your Business Soapbox
 
We all have feelings. As a voiceover talent, you are probably a passionate and insightful actor. Moreover, you most likely use social media as an intricate part of your voiceover business. Many businesses do the same thing. Unless your business is directly related to sharing your opinions, consider the consequences before posting your personal beliefs via social media.
 
This advice may save your business and career. I have heard of people losing out on jobs and even relationships because of online postings. If you recall an event some years ago, a voiceover talent lost a major character voice contract because he posted a personal opinion on Twitter. And the list goes on.
 
You would think that personal opinions posted online would not affect a person’s business. Hey, welcome to the digital age. Our society is more connected via the web than through personal relationships. Often, opinions about new relationships start with online searches. Some even do extensive checks into posting histories to decide on new hires, clients, and even marriage partners. So what you say online does matter. 
 
Be Sensitive When Posting 

Carefully consider what you post online regarding personal views and even some family matters. In What Not to Post on Social Media, Rhianna Richards, Head of Marketing at Sysomos, suggests staying clear of posts that are potentially negative or can be perceived in poor taste.
  
Maintain A Positive Online Presence
 
In business, most prefer and choose to do business with people they like and with whom it is easy to work. Any negative or averse comments posted by you may be seen as controversial or a sign of trouble. You don't want to give potential clients the wrong impression of your business because of your online posting. As voice talent, you may be expected to demonstrate warm emotion through voice acting. If you are perceived as divisive, you may not be considered for some jobs in some categories or with some organizations. That big long-term voice gig client may keep searching for talent after reading your postings.
 
Be Business Smart
 

If your values appear to be strong in one direction or another, you may lose potential clients. It's best not to reveal your positions on some subjects. This is not being phony or fake, it's being business smart.  You are not required to reveal your deepest views and personal affiliations via the web. If warranted, let potential clients address you directly and not use your social media profiles to gain insight into your personal preferences.
 
Keep it Light; Keep Getting Paid
 
In a few months, we should have another American president. Nevertheless, you want to continue in business and keep your friends regardless of who sits in the Oval Office. So make a mental note to hold back on some personal online views. With that said, if you are a political figure, strategist, religious leader, commentator or the like, your personal views should be shared. But as a voiceover talent, keep it light and keep getting paid.
 
Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, Act 1, Scene 3 says, “This above all- to thine own self be true,... .” Great advice, but not the best for social media platforms.


Image: Aug. 16, 1961. A bird's eye view of West Germans protesting the division of Berlin. From the booklet "A City Torn Apart: Building of the Berlin Wall." (https://www.usa.gov/government-works) Credit: U.S. Government Works




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