September 5, 2014
By: Kelsey Miller @Kelsey_65
It’s the debate of the century: should I keep my Instagram private? This question may be tossed around for generations to come, but I am a true believer in keeping it public, no matter your career profession. My only exception to this belief is if you are under the age of eighteen, simply because you are a minor and probably aren’t pursuing a career.
Although Instagram is the main focus, ALL social media accounts should be kept public (unless you’re inappropriate on those accounts). Many pro-public people believe in the power of feeling as though they can be free and uncensored to say and post anything they like without any consequences because they approve who can and cannot see their posts on Insta. Trust me, I see where these people are coming from, but I always find myself thinking that the generation before us was able to survive without showing everyone and their sister (whom they would approve) to look at pictures that would otherwise be embarrassing to show a potential employer.
Our industry in particular is very social. As future PR professionals, we must sell our image and knowledge as to how we want to be presented. If you want to be hired as a representative for a specific agency or brand, you;re a full-time worker in the way that you are portrayed online. No one wants to be judged, but the harsh reality is that we live in a judgmental society.
Pro-private Instagrammers feel that because Instagram isn’t considered a blog or micro-blog such as Facebook or Twitter, it slips under the radar and can remain private without scrutiny. This may be true with some employers, but most people should count on PR and ad agencies to be social media savvy enough to think to do their research on all social media outlets they have. When an employer sees that all of your outlets are private, they will automatically assume you have something to hide. If you have kept all of your outlets public except your Instagram, they will be just as suspicious. The sheer morbid curiosity of what a private Instagram account holds makes most employers pretty apprehensive. Those employers have been through college, but they don’t have public proof of it online…
If you are embarrassed of the pictures on your Instagram account, then you probably shouldn’t have posted them in the first place. If you aren’t embarrassed about what you have posted but feel that a potential employer may not approve, then that job wasn’t meant for you anyway. You want an employer that likes you for your personality and your work. There will be employers that have no problems with pictures that other employers may cringe at the sight of. Although if they are interviewing you for a job or internship and are a good fit for their company, it is also up to you to do a little interviewing for yourself to see if that company or agency is a good match for you as well.
Don’t sweat about the social media accounts, whether you are pro-public or pro-private. I know that there have been pro-privates that get the job over pro-publics. Do yourself a favor though, pro-privaters,, and think about going public even if it is only for a week. Does that make you feel embarrassed? If it does, then maybe you should rethink what you post. If you aren’t embarrassed in the least, then what is there to hide? The ultimate decision Is yours.