Blog / 2021 / The One Thing You Must Do When You’re Deleting Social Media

May 16, 2021

Eighteen years ago on this day, I officially began my art career! I originally picked today as my artiversary because it was the date of my first ever meeting with a gallery owner, as I explain in this video about the ten lessons I learned in the first decade of my career. By 2018, when I celebrated my artiversary by reading from the diary of me as a young artist, I mistakenly thought the date was chosen for the day I graduated with my BA from Willamette University.

Either way, May 16th is when I make a special effort to help other artists make money with their work, like with this video today.

[video transcript]

If you are considering getting off of socials, this vlog explains another aspect of how to delete your profile without deleting friends, and, for more about why I canceled Facebook and Instagram, check out this post.

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT

When I was deleting Facebook and Instagram a while back, I did a lot of the leaving of those platforms very publicly. I announced mutliple times that I would be exiting the party that is social media, because saying goodbye when you are leaving a party is what’s polite. But beyond that public stuff that I was doing, I was also working on a very big project, behind the scenes. And that was to update my address book with everything that I had forgotten to update it with for years because I was depending on Facebook and Instagram to keep that information for me.

Today I want to share the spreadsheet address book that I use because it might inspire you to help you keep in better touch with your community.

This is the basic format for an entry in my spreadsheet address book:

  • First name of a person.
  • Last name.
  • The date that I met them—I do the date with year and then month and then day.

Then I make some notes about:

  • Their work.
  • How I met them.
  • Maybe something notable about them that will help jog my memory about who they are.
  • And then, also, however they’re related to my work. Did they buy it? Are they supporting my work on Patreon?
  • And then information about their kids or their partner.
  • And then maybe locations—anything that I know about that.
  • As well as, of course, their contact information.

But the bigger part of the project for me as I was deleting Facebook and Instagram was to sort all of my contacts in my address book into four different groups.

The BEST group are the people who are the most supportive of my work, either through the way that they encourage me or share my art or the money that they spend on my work.

And then the GOOD group is a slightly larger group. They’re still really excellent supporters of my work in a variety of ways.

And then there’s the KEEP IN MIND group. These people are definitely interested in my work and I want to be sure to remember to reach out to them individually if I have something coming up that I think they might be interested in, but they haven’t engaged yet on a really regualr basis with my work.

And then the OUT OF TOUCH group. There are thousands of names on this part of my spreadsheet. It’s people that I’ve been in touch with at some point, but they don’t seem to be as interested in my work now. So I am keeping them on the list so that I still have notes about who they are if they get back in touch, but I’m not going to make the effort at this point to reach out to them.

It may seem creepy to you, taking notes like this about people, but I have to ask: is it any creepier really than only visiting someone’s Facebook page when you want something from them? When you want to be able to message them and say: “Oh! I saw that you just posted this!” Even though you don’t really follow their stuff, but in this case you do because you want to butter them up a little bit.

It’s not creepy so much as respectful to make notes about who your audience is, because your community is what’s going to allow you to make money with your work. And so you’re going to have to put in some effort in order to make those relationships work, and this is just part of that!

This video is made with love and microdonations from my community!


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