A couple of days ago, I called to make an appointment with my manicurist and the woman who answered the phone told me they had fired Vicki. I felt bad for Vicki. My second thought was she doesn’t have my phone number, so she can’t let me know where she ends up. I would have been happy to follow her to her next salon and help her build her business.

How does the plight of my raggedy nails apply to your creative career?

1. You want to be able to talk directly to your fans to let them know where you are and what you’re doing, like where they can see your latest movie or buy your latest book.

2. You want the people who could hire you to be able to find you easily even if you move jobs or cities.

How do you stay connected with your fans and potential employers?

1. Email

2. LinkedIn

3. Your website

Email

You need e-mail addresses so you can send updates when you have good news, like a book or starting a new job. If you build a large following on any social media without capturing e-mail addresses, you do not have a way to contact your fans if the social media platform goes down or closes your account. (LinkedIn is the exception and we’ll get to that in a minute.)

It is easy to gather friends’ and coworkers’ e-mail addresses. But how do you get e-mail addresses for people that are following you on social media? By asking them to sign up for your newsletter.

You can’t use Gmail or Outlook to send out mass emails. You will need an email marketing service to send your newsletter. There are many services out there to choose from. I use and recommend ​ConvertKit​. ConvertKit and MailerLite both have free plans to until you reach a thousand subscribers. Substack is always free. All of these choices let you write and schedule emails ahead of time.

You can send a monthly email or only reach out when you have something to share. Email is the easiest way to reach people and build connections.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is one of the first places people go when they have positions (even creative ones) to fill. Make sure that your profile is up to date and professional. Check out ​LinkedIn for Creatives​ for suggestions. Anytime you have a professional win, be sure to post it here. When other people share their good news, congratulate them. Make it a habit to connect on LinkedIn with everyone you work with, from assistants to executives.

Check your LinkedIn messages at least twice a week. You never know who might reach out!

Your Website

If you haven’t gotten around to building a website or yours needs updating, do it now. You want your professional accomplishments and how to reach you to come up when someone googles you. Check out ​How to Build Your Own Website Even if You’re Not Techie​.

The key is to ​be easy to find​ for your fans, customers, and future employers.


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