Unfiltered Truth: The Side Effects of Being a Social Media Manager

My first Instagram post was in 2012. I left the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and was over the moon excited to get home and blog about my experience and interviews backstage. A friend recommended that I share my blurry AF photo of Miranda Kerr on Instagram as a little sneak peek of what was to come on my blog. I was hesitant at first, mostly because I hate attention and I’m by no means photographer status, but the opportunity to promote my blog on a platform other than Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter was far too tempting to resist. I was so young and oblivious to the fact that this app was about to change everything.

Six months after that first Insta post and essentially trying to build my own brand, I began managing social media for an accessories startup. Less than a year after that it was for a fashion company and for the past year and a half I’ve handled social media and influencer marketing for a beauty brand. Social media campaigns take strategic planning, trends take research and creativity and copy writing often takes time. It’s not just about engagement and followers, but rather building brand loyalty, awareness and an ROI. It’s not an easy gig many assume it would be. This profession can be lonely. Since it’s still a fairly new form of marketing and advertising, many companies don’t have social media teams. Being a one-man show, even having times when I didn’t have a boss, has allowed for creative freedom but it’s boring and stressful as hell. Navigating your way through your career alone in your 20’s, at any age, sucks.

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Antisocial

Full disclosure— I hate traveling. This goes back to college, when I lied and told my friends and family that my major didn’t allow me to study abroad… I like my own bed, sue me.  Nowadays, if a guy’s profile on Bumble says “I love to travel!” or “just got back from traveling the world!” I immediately block his account and continue to swipe left in fear. Clearly, I’ve known deep down that this isn’t an interest of mine but only of recent have I owned it.

I don’t like trips abroad, cooking, manicures, the beach or drinking… so if you scroll through my Instagram, you may decide I’m the least fun person you’ll ever meet. But at least I’m being honest. You can’t tell me that everyone on social media enjoys unicorn toast in the AM, followed by a Starbucks unicorn frappuccino and the real magic is getting to SoulCycle that evening. We make it clear what our passions and hobbies are but leave out what we don’t like because it’s uncomfortable. Disliking something will make us sound less fun, right?

I get it though. We want everyone to think we’re a good time. I used to think that confessing my strong disinterest in things like traveling would make me sound less adventurous, independent or more introverted than I already seem… But I realized how communicating to others about what doesn’t interest me can be just as important as telling them what does. No brainer? Maybe in 2004. Personally, I found it to be difficult when social media wants me to portray an image of what most people like to do in their free time. Here are some of my do’s and don’ts I’ve been living by.

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