Knight Fellow Danyel Smith on mastering social media

One of the perks of being a Knight Fellow is the opportunity to learn from other (often far more talented) fellows — like, for example, veteran magazine editor and social media maven Danyel Smith.

Smith has been tweeting “since the beginning,” but that’s not the only reason she boasts a city’s worth of followers on Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram.

“Always be connected,” she told the 2013-14 class of Knight Fellows during a mini-bootcamp this week. “Social media is a lifestyle.”

Other gems: 

  • “Make a commitment not to lose your phone.” (Also, keep it charged.)
  • “Wherever you are is exciting to someone else.” (So take a photo!)
  • “The whole goal on Twitter is to give people something to talk about.”
  • Have fun with it,” and don’t stress out about follows/unfollows.
  • As a journalist, think of your last few tweets as your personal lede. They’re the first things someone will see if they check out your profile, so if you’re going offline for a while, make your last couple of tweets interesting. 
  • “If you’re doing it right, you may experience a moment of addiction. It will pass.”

Here’s a Storify of the entire talk, courtesy of Knight Fellow Martin Kotynek:

Follow Danyel Smith on Twitter and Tumblr, and learn more about her Knight Journalism Challenge