How To Navigate The World Of Social Media

Social-Media

By Brian Henninger

Social media can be a tremendous tool that can expose your talents to the entire world. When used properly social media can further your career in new directions, bolster your visibility within your current community, and provide an easily accessible way for you
to be seen by potential employers (i.e. Casting Directors, Producers, Choreographers, agents, etc.). Social media has made the barrier to entry into the world of dance as both a hobby and a career very small. It has allowed many amazing talents who
would have had to pack up and move to NYC or LA to get discovered do so in the comfort of their own home towns.

So how do you know how to use social media to boost your career without jeopardizing it? Check out this simple list of Do’s and Don’ts to make sure your going about it the right way!

DO: Use social media to stay updated on the different classes, workshops, or auditions that your favorite choreographers may be having.

DONT: Use Social media to try and strike up conversations about your training or questions about the industry with choreographers if you don’t already have a mentor/mentee relationship. It’s always better to ask a question regarding you as a dancer IN PERSON with a choreographer that you have not already built a relationship with.

DO: Use social media to seek out inspiration, to see what the latest trends in the industry are, to watch interviews with choreographers and artists, and to research your art.

DON’T: Use social media to learn choreography only from videos and think that that is sufficient training and preparation for the real world of commercial dance. Watching someone on film is COMPLETELY different then being in class and learning from
that person.

DO: Use social media to post videos that track your progress, to post videos that showcase your choreography in a PROFESSIONALLY shot setting with proper lighting and only post the footage if it is top quality and your best work.

DON’T: Use social media to WHORE (yes thats right I said WHORE) yourself out to the entire world, posting videos that are of mediocre quality on the Facebook pages of agents, artists, and choreographers, and having the audacity to put booking contact info at the end of the video. You know when you’ve not given your best effort. Don’t rush your progression and make a bad first impression on potential connections in this industry.

DO: Realize that people have lives and that they will not drop everything they are doing to respond to your facebook message asking them what their favorite song is. Be patient when waiting for responses from people you reach out to while still being persistent and
following up.

DON’T: Think the world revolves around you. I know you don’t think that! But don’t you find that so annoying? I’m sure you do, so have patience with your online communications.

Social media, like any social element is really about using your common sense. If you’re about to post something, make a comment, send and email, or hash tag a picture, ask yourself “how does this reflect on me as a professional in this industry?” The answer to
that question will tell you what to do 9 times out of 10.

If you are interested in learning more about how to take your dance career to the next level check out my book: “Book Dance Jobs: The Ultimate Career Guide For Professional Dancers” available at http://www.bookdancejobs.com and in paper back at the store at http://www.broadwaydancecenter.com

Photo: Via Qadabra
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