Are you someone who mixes their personal Facebook page with their business contacts? If so, you’re not alone. There are a lot of benefits to showing your personal side to prospective clients and helping them understand that you’re a real person too, not just a professional.
However, as with everything, it’s important to practice moderation.
Mixing Business With Pleasure: What NOT to Do
You know how they say that even in casual relationships it’s best to avoid the topics of politics, religion, and personal morality? The same is true for your personal social media accounts that you also use for business.
I get it. There’s a lot going on in the world, and you probably feel strongly about it. It’s normal to want to share your opinions. Unfortunately, it can cost you dearly if you do it in the wrong ways.
A real estate agent in Beverly Hills thought that she could post whatever she wanted on her personal Instagram account. After all, it’s her story, right? Well, yes – kind of.
The agent was reacting to a group called Black and Brown United for Change and she wasn’t a fan. As a result, she posted things like, “Get these thugs out of our country... we need a wall... are you kidding!!! Go Trump.” She also posted offensive comments about a black woman’s hairstyle and racist comments about Mexicans.
Instagram users alerted the agent’s brokerage and boss. The woman lost her job.
Now, most of us wouldn’t foolishly post racist comments in public. But remember, if you touch on sensitive subjects, you’re likely to offend someone, and it can cost you a client or even your position.
Should You Wall it Off?
As a result of incidents like this, some Realtors® think it’s better to simply not show their personal side on social media. They don’t want their personal opinions and beliefs to prevent someone from working with them. But that has its own drawbacks.
Maintaining two separate accounts – especially on multiple social media platforms – takes a lot of time, and if something falls short it will probably be your business accounts. If you use a social media posting program like Buffer, you have to be especially careful to post the correct information to the correct account.
It’s great to have a safe place to be fully yourself, rants and all. It’s nice to have your personal viewpoints not impact your professional relationships. But if you have separate accounts, you’ll miss out on the possibility of having your friends and family share your professional information with their networks.
The Verdict? It’s Up to You.
Internet marketing is a vital part of making yourself visible as a Realtor®. You have to interact on at least some social media accounts. You’ll need some online contact information to add to your business cards and postcards so people can check you out.
Whether you decide to carefully mix your personal and professional presence on a single account or keep two completely separate accounts is up to you. You know best how you handle touchy topics online.
I’d love to know – what’s your policy? Do you mix business with personal accounts? Or do you have two completely separate online identities?