10 Reasons NOT to Have Only One Social Media Profile (for the D.I.Y. Rock Star)
This blog post loosely follows Gab & Jam Episode 141
Don’t get us wrong; we LOVE to interact on Facebook! In fact, it is the number one place that we engage with you all. It’s just that there are ALL kinds of reasons NOT to put all our eggs in that social media basket. Would you be surprised to hear that we have over 23k+ followers on over 30 platforms? That’s right. (Stay tuned to see ALL the places that we have a presence.)
Why soooooooo many places?
If you have told me that we SHOULD have a presence on SOOOO many places when we began this blogging, podcasting, video-making, and music making journey, I would have said you were crazy! In fact, when I heard someone on some podcast say that you it’s a waste of time to spread yourself so widely between so many, it was JUST what I wanted to hear. And, truth be told, that was what we needed in the very beginning; to simply START on one and start building the infrastructure (the friends, the basic branding, and get some posts up). However, as these last 4 years has whizzed past, we have learned that there are way too many benefits to having MANY places to share versus fewer. While you may NOT get crazy with the cheese whiz and have 30 profiles (and counting!), this post is intended to help fellow D.I.Y. Rock Stars understand why having more than ONE social media platform.
11 Reasons NOT to Have Only One Social Media Profile
Okay, so this is really 11 Reasons NOT to Have Only One Social Media Profile (for the D.I.Y. Rock Star). As we were fleshing out the reasons, we teased out one REALLY big one, which we put in at the end, so that makes 11!
1. You can be demonetized
If your post contains something BELIEVED to be copyrighted OR “questionable” material, the platform may limit your ability to make money off of it—i.e. Rick Beato, a YouTuber and rock record producer who analyzes classic rock songs. The minute he uses over 10 seconds of someone else’s song, you will not make money on your video. What’s worse is that the band can ask that you take the video down. While we appreciate the band’s right to make money off of their art AND to have control over who uses their music, it really sucks if you’re simply singing their praises (as Beato does). And if your hustle on YouTube is how you make YOUR living, it’s not cool when you’ve put upward of 15 hours, sometimes, into making a video, only to have it be demonetized—or yanked altogether. Beato has mentioned that, in order to salvage playing the video at all WITH the song clips included, he posts onto ANOTHER video social media channel; which is the first VERY good reason to have more than one video sharing social media profile.
2. The algorithm can change
GloZell, the YouTube comedian, takes about how she was making a killing with her channel and then the algorithm changed and she said it was devastating to her bottom line. She says she went from being no one to interviewing President Obama on her upswing and then, almost overnight, she was barely making enough to cover household bills! It’s not that YouTube shouldn’t have the right to change its mind about who should see your videos, but when a change on their side changes your whole lifestyle, that’s not cool for you. As a D.I.Y. Rock Star, you work too damn hard to have the tables turned on you like that, so don’t leave ALL your creative work only on ONE platform. Just like having multiple revenue streams is advisable, so is NOT depending on one social media platform to be your base of operations.
3. They can change the rules on you
Similar to those pesky algorithm changes, what you are able to do and/or what you USED to be able to do can hamper your ability to be effective and efficient on the platform. What we mean is that I get told that I “liked” too many posts within a certain period of time and end up in what not-so-affectionately call “Facebook Jail.” What this means is that I am restricted to not liking or posting, but if still continue to try when I am on restriction, I can be stopped from doing ANY activity for as few as 24 hours to as much as 30 days to some people getting kicked off entirely. (My typical punishment is about 7 days.) We don’t know about you, but sometimes networking on Facebook can mean the difference between folks checking our latest music, our blog posts, podcast episodes, and our YouTube videos. This means that we are on the platform engaging with people from all over the world for the purposes of gaining traction with our creative work, because isn’t that what you’re SUPPOSED to do on social media? BE SOCIAL?! Well, not TOO MUCH; that is if you don’t want to get the boot! That’s why, when I get the first warning now, I promptly move on to Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, etc., etc., etc. I can’t afford to let one social media platform determine how many people I can impact with our work, so I move on, in order to explore—and to expand—other options.
4. Your fans may be hanging out in other places
We have followers on ALL 30+ platforms, though some profiles have more than others. We find that though SOME people follow us on more than one platform, just like us, they PREFER to spend time on one social media platform versus another. Therefore, we find that we typically have a very different set of followers from one place to the next. The good part is that we get to engage with more people than we ever would have known existed had we NOT gone and spent time on another social media platform. The bad part is that it does require that you spend the time on yet another social media platform. [My newest, most effective, method is to spend about 10 minutes on Instagram, then 10 minutes on Twitter, and then 45 minutes on Facebook. That has helped us steadily grow those accounts, but allows me to manage our personal account, three business pages, and our two Facebook groups effectively.]
5. There may be a dispute about your content
I WOULD’VE considered a comment like this the paranoid ravings of a narcissist, if it had not happened MORE than once to us! There are times when Facebook has decided that we are going against “Community Standards”—even when we didn’t know it and sometimes even when we’re not—and there is absolutely NOTHING you can do, but request a manual review—which usually ends up with them reinforcing their original decision. We have been taking out ads during our last few years in order to increase the number of visitors we would receive to our SoundCloud page. We had two instances that I recall vividly where we got the smack down from Facebook about our art. One time, it was because we had a cassette player button on the ad and another time, it was for our Tony Webb song, “Soul Funkstication,” (add SoundCloud link) and Facebook would not let them run! (In the first case, we found out that play buttons are not allowed on images and on the second instance, we believe they assumed that the title of the song was a curse word, which is not allowed.) They told me that we would have to re-design the art in order to buy an ad. It was horrifying to think that we wouldn’t be able to GIVE them money to run these ads, because they were deemed to be against their standards. That’s why we don’t rely on them to get our message out without having other ways—and other social media platforms—to distribute our work.
6. There’s a glitch in the system
We don’t know about you, but it is NOT unusual to encounter an error on the platform. Sometimes, it manifests itself where you CANNOT post or respond, because of a technical error on THEIR part— or, for some reason for a couple of weeks, my feed would run out of content about half an hour of scrolling. I started seeing posts that I had seen—and responded to already— the day before. Whether it’s a glitch or an algorithm, what happened to possibly the thousands of posts I might have missed? Or the posts that others, who may have experienced the same thing, did not see from me? Again, it is not our fault, but it IS our responsibility as creators to get our content (songs, livestreams, posts) into the feeds of as many people as we think MIGHT be interested in what we’re sharing. When things glitch, you don’t know whether or not to re-post the same exact posts again—in hopes to catch the folks who may have missed it before—or do you just give up and pray that they saw it? We propose the other alternative; which is to find some other places to share your posts until you gauge feedback on that questionable place. In other words, if you find that people are liking, commenting, or sharing that post, then there’s no need to re-post, but if you hear virtual crickets, then you will know that you might want to re-post. In the meantime, however, folks—on other platforms—have had a chance to engage with your content while you figure this out. Don’t make one social media platform cramp your style by making you look too needy if you post the same thing again back-to-back. We HATE needy, but we love determined, so by spreading your work amongst many communities, you can maintain your brand of confidence and self-assurance.
7. You can be “cancelled”
We’ve got an entire episode on this! But you already know that, if what you are saying is NOT the popular opinion of the platform you’re on, you can get booted without warning. SURPRISE! I have heard people say that cancel culture is not real, but all it takes is SOMEONE—ANYONE!—to complain to a social media platform for you to get the boot. Again, we don’t know about you, but, though they have the right to throw you off the account, we don’t want to leave our ability to engage socially and meaningfully to be controlled by ONE social media platform. We can’t say what we WON’T say—we’re artists and like to reserve the right to speak freely, if we feel we need to—so that’s just NOT wise for us to limit being able to share to a community of people to ONE social media platform.