Social Media Advice and More from Mandy Reinig

Mandy and Colleagues at a TweetUp

Mandy and Colleagues at a TweetUp

How did you get into social media?

I got started in social media completely by accident.  I wasn’t planning on working with social media at all but it started as part of a class project as a part of my second Masters in Teaching English as a Second Language.  Since it I wasn’t teaching at the time I decided to try out blogs and Facebook with my study abroad students since I was working as a full time Education Abroad Advisor and had a ready supply of students I could make use of.  My little project exploded from there and my campus decided to use it as an example and decided to do blogs and other types of social media because of what I had started.  My intensive Twitter use came after and was really just me experimenting with the social media that was out there.  I have had no formal training with any social media tools and it has really just been me playing around and trying out different social media tools to find the ones I like best.

Why did you start Mandy’s Mashups?

I started Mandy’s Mashups because I saw a need for social media training specifically for international educators.  There was quite a bit of social media training out there geared towards the business world and other sectors but nothing that really fit what we as international educators did.  I by no means consider myself an expert at all things social media but I have tried out enough social media tools that I figured I could assist people in avoiding some of the pitfalls I met along the way and help direct them in really making use of social media in a way that fits what we as international educators do.

Why is having an online presence important to you?

Having an online presence is important to me for several reasons.  One, it allows me to have my voice heard in a way that I wouldn’t be able to otherwise.  In your job you come into contact with a certain number of people because of what you do.  With social media I am able to expand that circle of people and even expand it to outside of my field and make connections I would not be able to otherwise.  I am also able to express myself in a different way.  In my job my work generally consists of reports and presentations.  However, online I can express what I do and who I am through photos, quotes, fun sayings, and more.  I think this allows people to get to know you on another level.  I have developed some great online friendships with people I have never met because of that.  I will caution that you still need to protect your privacy and remember that everything you put out online is available to everyone.

Mandy's Mashups Website

Mandy’s Mashups Website

What advice do you have for students learning to use social media for personal or professional brands?

I have several tips for students wanting to use social media.  My first tip is to remember that everything you post can be accessed forever and is available to everyone.  This means you should be careful about what you post and don’t be one of those people who goes around posting those drunk photos of yourself and regretting it later.  With this you want to make sure you set your privacy settings according to your comfort level so that your posts are only shared with the audience you are most comfortable with.

I also suggest varying your posts.  This means varying the content as well as what you write.  Try posting some videos as well as photos and text.  Generally speaking graphics and more interactive posts tend to grab more attention that simple text based posts.  However, your audience may be different so don’t be afraid to try out a few things and see what works for you.  Remember what works for one person won’t necessarily work for another person.

My final piece of advice is it is better to be master of only a few social media tools rather than jack of all social media tools.  By this I mean try to find your niche within one or two of your favorite social media tools rather than having a hand in every social media tool out there.  If you try to conquer every social media tool out there all at the same time you will find it doesn’t work very well and the quality of your posting will be extremely poor since you can’t devote the time that you need to all of those different venues.

A tip for posting to multiple venues is to use a social media management tool like HootSuite.  I have tried out several of these management tools and HootSuite is my favorite since it allows you to post to several networks all at the same time as well as monitor all your networks at once.  It can save tons of time and energy so I recommend checking it out.

If you have any questions don’t be afraid to Tweet me @mandysmashups!!

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Atlas Sliced

Atlas Sliced Interview: Sharing Social Media Tips with the World

Last week I had the honor of being featured in Slice #61 on Atlas Sliced, the web’s only travel show that offers advice for those looking to work and live abroad. In the interview, Alexa Hart, founder of Atlas Sliced, asks me questions about why social media is important, as well as how it can help you in your career, and even help you go abroad. Watch the full episode below to get some tips on using social media to promote yourself positively and professionally.

EPISODE SLICE #61: Using Your Travels & Social Media to Create a Positive Online Persona


A big shout-out and thank you to Alexa for having me on the show! Be sure to check out Atlas Sliced on Facebook & Twitter.

FAQ: I’m not a blogger, how can I showcase my experience online?

Students often ask me how they can showcase themselves or their experience online without blogging. This is a great question, especially for those who aren’t writers, or perhaps don’t have the time and resources to sustain a blog. There are several great online tools out there that can help you represent yourself online without blogging, or even as a compliment to your blog if you have one. Here are a few of the more creative and unique ways to represent yourself outside of your traditional social media channels:

Vizify

I stumbled across this awesome site after conversing with @adelynlee on Twitter. She has a great profile set up to compliment her online presence.

Vizify

About.me

This free and easy to use site allows you to create a short summary of yourself and provide links to your other social media profiles.

About.me

Zerply

Similar to the above site, Zerply creates a page that features information about you. “Zerply is a simple professional network focusing on your experience and talent while presenting you in the best possible way.”

Zerply

ViewYou

“We create stunning video introductions and profiles for motivated job seekers looking to standout in today’s crowded job market.” If you’re looking for a truly untapped and unique way to profile yourself, ViewYou is it!

ViewYou

Pathbrite

Pathbrite is a brilliant site that creates an online and visual portfolio of whatever content you choose to include.

Pathbrite

Whether you use one of the above or one of the many other platforms created to help you showcase yourself online, you’re sure to make an impression, even if you don’t have a blog.

Do you use another platform to showcase yourself? Tell me about it in the comments!