Martin Luther King wrote, “The silence of good people is more dangerous than the brutality of bad people.” This quote has become alarmingly clear recently, as we all have been asked to step up and speak out against what is wrong, and become strong advocates for change – no matter our platform.
If you know me from Dance Moms, you know I’m not the type to keep my mouth shut. About anything. If there is an injustice, I have always done my best to address it – and now is no exception. I know I cannot reach everyone on my platform, and that these issues extend far beyond a dance studio argument – but what I can do is empower young people to use their own platforms to advocate for change – and teach them how to do it.
Here is my best advice for creating content that creates change.
- Believe in your own message. An amazing place to start whenever you want to evoke change is believing in your own message first. Before you can convince others of your message, you need to know why you believe it yourself. What does the issue you’re thinking about make you feel? Why is it important that people understand? Answering these questions will not only inspire the content of your message, but make it less susceptible to criticism from others. An opinion does not lose value because it is passionate – rather, it gains attention!
- Know your audience. From here, focus on the “who” you are addressing. Is your audience your age? Younger? Older? Where are they reading your message? If you’re posting on Twitter, you don’t have all the room that you have on Instagram or Facebook. Your message will need to be shorter but still express the same points. If you’re writing something longer, how will you keep your audience engaged until the end? These are important to consider when crafting your message to make sure it is not only seen, but
- Grab their attention. The #blackoutTuesday Instagram posts (plain black screens posted on Instagram in support of the Black Lives Matter movement) garnered attention because they were not the norm. Instagram is usually adorned with light and airy filters, as well as lots of color. These posts were the exact opposite. Not only did they grab attention, but they symbolized the movement for which they were posted, making them easily recognizable and impossible to miss. What content can YOU create that will be impossible for your audience to ignore? What about it makes it out of the norm? Does it play on emotion? Symbolize something bigger?
- Call your audience to action. Grabbing your audience’s attention is only half the battle. Once you have it, what are you going to do with it? When advocating for change, you are pushing people to do something, whether it’s to change their beliefs, speak out for or against something, etc… Make your content more effective by telling your audience exactly what you want them to do. Provide a link to a petition, donation site, email template, etc… (the list goes on!) where your audience can use the information you’ve just given them to actually make an impact.
Creating change is never easy, and the change that needs to happen right now requires the support of everyone capable. And you – regardless of your age, gender, or following – are capable of speaking out!
Use my tips when crafting content that advocates for change.
And, use this link to speak out against current injustices and support the #BLM movement: