Social Media

Protecting Yourself on Social Media

The Company Cksyme recently wrote a great article on social media for college athletes and how it can affect them in life. This isn’t the first time NCSA has told athletes about the danger of social media in life and in recruiting. Read the article below, even though it is geared towards college athletes there are points and instructions that are good for high school athletes to know as well!

Winter Graduation Approaches: What Does Your Social Media Look Like?

Many student-athletes are graduating mid-year in the next couple weeks. No doubt, some are staying in school, but many of you are moving on and are ready for that first job. As you are polishing your resumés and portfolios, are you looking at your social media?

By now, I hope you know that the majority of employers are looking at your public social media resumé as part of your larger application packet. If your Twitter and Instagram accounts are public, or if portions of your Facebook profile are not private, this would be a good time to take inventory. Here are a few tips:

1. Check the content on your social media profiles to make sure that it reflects the image you are trying to portray on your resumé. If it doesn’t, here are a couple things you can do immediately:

  • If it’s just the “here or there” post on Twitter that are in bad taste, delete the posts. If you feel your general posts are something you don’t want a potential employer to see, make your account private immediately. Just know that any post you made before you protect your account may be searchable. Also, you will have to “re-approve” all the people you allow to follow you. Click on this link for instructions on protecting your tweets. But remember, this doesn’t give you license to tweet irresponsibly. Anyone can take a screenshot and post it online.
  • Protect your Instagram account. If you haven’t already, make sure your Instagram account is private as well. Here are instructions for that.
  • Go through your Facebook privacy settings and make sure of a couple things: turn on the notification to approve all tags and make sure your posts are going to friends only. Also comb through that “About” section and make sure you take out information you have shared about yourself that isn’t “professional.” All the info you need is in the Facebook help section under “Privacy.” Also make sure the information in your About section agrees with information you have put on your resumé.
  • 2. Consider deleting your profiles on applications that reflect poorly on your maturity and responsibility levels. These include Snapchat, ask.fm, Reddit, Kik, and 4Chan. There may be more—use your good judgment. Remember that every searchable public profile tells a future employer a little about you. Employers may see something they don’t like and decide you aren’t worth the trouble. Check out what employers are looking for on your social media here.3. Make sure all your social profiles are up to date. If you haven’t yet, get a LinkedIn, Google, and about.me profile set up. Fill out your bios on those sites as if you know your prospective employer will be looking. Remember to use a professional-looking headshot. If you don’t have one, get a friend to take one. Make it from the chest up and make sure you smile. If you took your team picture in anything but a uniform, you can probably use that. Ask your sports information director for a digital copy.Most of all, I wish you all good luck. Congratulations on a job well done. As always, email me or send me a tweet if you have any questions.This is an article I originally sent out to schools I have worked with training their student-athletes, but I thought it might be appropriate for my larger audience. If you are a coach, compliance person, or an AD, you might want to forward this on to your senior student-athletes.

About cksyme

Chris Syme heads a strategic communications agency in Bozeman, Montana. The CKSyme Media Group specializes in social media strategies and training with a crisis/reputation expertise. Her new book, Practice Safe Social: How to Use Social Media Responsibly to Protect Your Reputation and Build Loyalty, is available now at Amazon.com. If you are interested in submitting a proposal for a guest blog piece, please email chris@cksyme.org.

About the author
Aaron Sorenson