To Tweet or Not to Tweet: Social Media for Young Performers
Like all professionals, young performers can benefit greatly from having a strong and consistent social media presence. But because of age restrictions and safety concerns, social media can be a tricky landscape to navigate for child actors. It almost goes without saying that every professional actor should be present and active on social media, but there are several precautions and issues one must consider before beginning.
Parents should begin by finding out the nuances, benefits, and risks of each platform. Here’s what you need to know.
Why Social Media?
One compelling reason why child actors should be active on social media is that it will help increase their visibility and promote networking with other professionals, including casting agents, producers, and agents. Posting content on the various social media platforms helps actors draw a personal connection with their audience, and a strong following is an asset when it comes to promoting upcoming projects.
Also, social media is a powerful tool that should be a core component of every actor’s marketing foundation. While all performers wield a resume and a demo reel to help secure new roles, not all put the same care and attention into their social media presence. And this is a mistake. Showbusiness is a competitive industry, and social media is a relatively easy and cost-effective way to further an actor’s career. Having a weak or nonexistent presence can be problematic for actors, as they may seem as if they are not relevant, connected, or engaged.
A word of caution: Social media accounts for young performers should be supervised by a parent, guardian, or professional who will ensure the safety of children. While teenagers are savvier when it comes to interacting with others online, guidelines and supervision is necessary to safeguard against risks. And social media accounts for very young performers will be run entirely by parents.
Is your child not active on social media? No need to panic. The good news is that it’s not too late! Start by choosing the best platform(s) for your young performer.
The Best Platforms for Actors
There are many different social media platforms, and each one provides actors with different benefits and opportunities to increase their exposure. It is worth noting that the minimum age for LinkedIn is 16, and 13 for most others.
Here is a breakdown of several social media networks:
YouTube, because of its focus on video content, is the ideal platform for actors to showcase their talents through demo reels or sizzle reels. A simple search of a name will connect a casting director with videos of your child’s work.
Instagram is a hub of pop culture and ideal for a young, fresh audience. Its focus on video and visual content also works in an actor’s favor. The current trend toward “influencers” makes Instagram a great platform for interesting actors to build their personality and presence for a large audience.
Twitter is another terrific platform for interacting with actors, agents, casting directors, and other showbusiness professionals. Actors can build a strong following, and because Twitter is more of a conversational network, there is a lot of opportunity to engage directly with fans and colleagues.
LinkedIn is a business-oriented social media platform. It is ideal for building relationships and connecting with industry professionals to help further an actor’s career. Industry executives are more likely to be active on LinkedIn than on other networks.
Actors and their parents will learn quickly that there is not enough time in the day to be active on all social media networks, so it is important to pick one or two that fit your goals, target audience, and personality. While there is a learning curve for each platform, you may find that it can be quite rewarding and fun once you get the hang of it.
And while you’re working on your presence on Twitter, why not follow us here.