“Social Media for Social Change” By Makenna Goad

Photograph of thrifted clothing via Unsplash.com

This past semester, I had a unique and engaging project assigned to me in one of my media classes. My classmates and I were instructed to create an Instagram account from scratch and post a minimum of five videos and five images. Sounds easy enough right? But, there was a twist. our account had to be centered around a social cause that we are passionate about. I chose sustainability in fashion, while some of my classmates chose topics like decreasing food waste, inclusion in foreign films and body positivity. 

I worked on this project over the course of three months and learned so much information and gained a lot of experience in social media management, as well as design. I was able to creatively direct my account and play with designs and aesthetics I felt related to sustainability. It was not only inspiring, but a great active and tangible piece that I can add to my portfolio!

When I first began my account, I was a bit overwhelmed. I had a blank canvas to which I could paint anything on. It was all up to me. 

It was important that I took it one day at time because social media can cause a mental overload. I first created an outline of the type of posts I wanted to create: thrift with me mini-vlogs, carousel informational posts, and styling videos. I then had to think of what I wanted my account to look like, so I decided on a green minimalist theme because I felt it reflected “sustainability” very well. I also decided on a name: @imthinkingthrift.

I then had to create the posts. I used Canva because I wanted all of my similar posts to look cohesive. Having a cohesive brand is so important, especially in the digital age. In my opinion, aesthetics on social media show your dedication to making sure your brand stands apart from the rest of your competition.

After I had posted all of my posts, I realized that I enjoyed creating original content. I never started an account like @imthinkingthrift before; I had only ever posted on my personal account or organizational accounts that I didn’t own. 

With every post I gained more knowledge about the fast fashion industry as well as the benefits of thrifting and repurposing clothing. I felt so inspired to do my part to reduce my personal textile waste. My hope was that my followers would feel the same and encourage their friends and families to do their part as well.

Overall, I enjoyed the project and I wish more professors would implement engaging projects like this. It was a great way to release some creativity, especially during such an odd and isolated time in our history. Since the pandemic, sharing information in an online format has become more popular and accessible than ever before. I encourage everyone, but specifically those interested in social media management, to create an account dedicated to something other than yourself. Gaining valuable knowledge about something you’re passionate about while also learning about how to successfully manage an account can not only help you grow as a professional, but as a human being as well. 

So, when you’re looking for something to do while this pandemic trudges on, try creating an Instagram account from scratch because it offers great experience with analytics, copy writing. and design. Not to mention, it can advocate for a great cause too!

Headshot of Makenna Goad

Makenna Goad is junior studying journalism, strategic communication and is a member of the publicity committee. Follow her on Twitter here!

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