The Cautionary Tale Of Cat Marnell: Personal Life Vs. Social Media Life

As almost everyone up to date on fashion news has heard by now, the ever eccentric Cat Marnell has admitted she can't take the life of the 9-to-5 anymore, and has bowed out of her Beauty Editor and Health Critic position at due to her self proclaimed drug addiction and partying habits. She responded to her untimely departure by admitting that her lifestyle was not well suited for the work place. “I’m always on drugs,” she wrote to the New York Post. “Look, I couldn’t spend another summer meeting deadlines behind a computer at night when I could be on the rooftop of Le Bain looking for shooting stars and smoking angel dust with my friends and writing a book, which is what I’m doing next.”

With articles ranging from using hemp and cannabis based beauty products to interviews with transexual Amanda Lepore about her hormone pills, Marnell was far from your average beauty writer. “Drug addicts undeniably bring editorial black magic to the table like nobody else, but obviously we make the worst staffers,” she wrote. “We can fake it [for a time] . . . before we turn into coddled emotional vampire nightmares.”

Marnell's drug addiction downfall and her outwardly personal social media about her drug use got us thinking about how we portray ourselves to our audiences, most specifically through Twitter. Though Marnell was upfront about her personal life on her Twitter account and her boss, Jane Pratt, was supportive, not every writer or blogger will have the same circumstances.

Being a blogger, personal commentary and opinion is incorporated with your writing (most of the time). As a result, your readership is interested in you as a person, aside from just your blog. You will notice your social media grow as your blog develops a stronger audience — and eventually, brands and advertisers will be checking in with what you update.

While Cat's chosen path can be used as a cautionary tale, here's some everyday tips to keep your social media in tune with your day-to-day, but not too over the top:

1. Don't drink and tweet. Or if you do, know that you might not love everything you wrote when you wake up the next morning. Like texting an ex, a little alcohol can loosen up those fingers on your phone.

2. Don't overshare. You don't want your followers to feel uncomfortable with “TMI” photos of your laser hair removal. Keep the uber-personal stuff personal. Use your best judgement — ask yourself: Would I want to read this if someone else posted it?

3. Don't oversaturate with annoying, frivolous tweets. Spread your tweets out throughout the day. No one wants a flood of incoming tweets sent out while you are in the waiting room of your dentist. You will notice a lot of unfollowing if it becomes a habit.

4. Keep it PG-13. Go ahead and express your frustrations and opinions, but swearing up a storm will most likely not be something future advertisers will be interested in.

5. Keep some things off limits. Ex boyfriends, gross procedures, certain bodily functions, etc. You can leave that all to your best friend chit chat, not broadcast it through the internet.

All in all, simply keep it classy. No one wants a boring Twitter feed, but a tweet faux-pas can hurt you in the long run if you are looking to brand yourself personally.

But on the other hand, if your persona is totally bad ass, keep it bad ass through and through and tweet away!

[Image credit: Shutterstock]

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3 Responses

  1. Aves Gry

    I have been thinking about this for some time now, and I was actually waiting for IFB to post an article about it. I guess, this article is close enough. I was curious about how a blogger can show their personality to readers while still being able to keep it know, like when not to over-share.

  2. Stace

    I don’t know, I actually think that Cat is kind of the master of building her persona. She’s over the top and out of control, but she’s compelling, and she’s gotten herself a half million dollar book deal.