I’m afraid of being annoying on social media. How can I promote my work and not bother people?
My very short advice is: stop caring. …but I know that’s not very constructive.
I think this particular question is one a lot of women face in many capacities: how do I make sure I am not perceived as annoying/bitchy/bossy/mean/rude. On social media, the fear is exacerbated because we can’t see the people on the other side of the screen and we don’t really know what their reactions to us might be.
Case in point, when I was working on Classic Alice, we ran two crowdfunding campaigns; the only way to really drive traffic to the campaign (or to the series) was to write about it All. The. Time. and Ev.Ery.Where. There is no other option. I bumped into people in the community upset with me for being aggressive and I remember thinking at the time:
Do male creators get this much guff for something so vital to the longevity of the show?
So I poked around and didn’t see a whisper directed to male creators working in similar spheres or running crowdfunding campaigns. That’s not to say it never happened, but I wasn’t able to track it down. And I thought: well, why? What is the difference?
I have a very hard time believing that the audience for Alice actually ever would believe women should be quieter than men, but somewhere along the line, that notion gets so deep within us it’s hard to shake. I wound up writing a post explaining why I was aggressively promoting my campaign but I was, if I’m being super honest, kind of resentful of it: why do I have to explain myself? Why do I have to defend my desire to keep 80+ people employed for a few months?
The reality is: I shouldn’t. I shouldn’t have to do that. But my choice was to either ignore it or try to embrace a teachable moment, which is what my longer advice to anyone struggling with feeling obnoxious on social media is: first, of course, stop caring. But second, can you reframe the entire thing as a potential for learning? You would learn to develop the patience for dealing with disgruntled fans and your fans, hopefully, learn just how fucking hard it is to keep a low budget digital series alive.
I know that made the whole thing more palatable for me: how about you?
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