Dear Ninja Dog:
I’m a welsh terrier who lives with a lawyer. She’s in her fourth year as an associate at a large firm. She doesn’t have the time she used to and barely spends time with me. I’ve turned to Twitter to develop some friends and have a pretty lively group of other dogs (and one ferret) that tweet back and forth all the time. Now my lawyer owner is thinking about getting another dog, thinking I’m lonely. I’m fine with Twitter and don’t want some other mate harshing my mellow. What should I do?
It sounds like you asked for help at just the right time. You’re going to want to tread very carefully here. One wrong move and your entire empire could come crumbling down at your paws.
The problem seems to be that your human doesn’t realize you’ve found a way to get your social needs met while she’s away at the office. You’ve done the right thing by turning to social media, and Twitter in particular, but I’m willing to bet a bag of dried pig ears that you’re not using it to its full potential. Once you are able to harness the power of social media to your advantage, you’ll never have human problems again.
How a Typical Dog Uses Social Media
Your human leaves for the office early in the morning and you’re faced with a long day of boring boringness. So you snooze on the sofa for about 20 minutes, then you snooze on the floor for another 20 minutes, then you take a drink from the water bowl and you flip open your Macbook Pro and check Twitter. You follow a mix of news accounts (Woofington Post, NBC, Dog News Daily), celebrity dogs (Benji, Toto, Spuds McKenzie), and brands (Alpo, Pig Ears International, Versace). Most of these accounts either don’t follow you back or, if they do, they rarely if ever interact with you.
You also probably follow a handful of dogs who are just regular canines, a lot like you, and you can chat back and forth with these dogs at your convenience when you feel lonely. When you have a funny thought that pops into your head during the middle of your day, you tweet it; then your fellow dogs tweet back things like “LOL” and “w00f.” You get validation from this interaction and you start to feel less and less isolated from the world. There really are dogs out there who like me and who value what I have to tweet, you think to yourself as you doze off for your 57th nap of the day.
Your human gets home after a long day at the office, and she’s looking for some snuggles and some entertainment from you–she feels a void because she’s been at her soul-sucking job for the last 12 hours. The problem here is that your social needs for the day have already been met via Twitter. You don’t feel a void. So you curl up on the sofa and take another nap. Your lack of enthusiasm for your human is then misinterpreted by her as loneliness on your part, when in fact just the opposite is true: you’re so fulfilled from your day of tweeting that you have no real need to interact with humans at all! This is a recipe for disaster.
How You Should Be Using Social Media
Instead of using social media solely for your own personal gain, you should put the power of social media to work for you and your human. As a certified expert in this field and author of the upcoming self-published e-book Social Media for Dogs, I can teach you how to harness the awesome power of social media to make money! A dog who makes money for his human is never in danger of being put outside with the bugs and the rain and the meth heads who live in the alley. Trust me on this. I’ve never been an outside dog.
Your first move should be to seek out other dogs on Twitter who, like you, have a lot of time on their hands and who are perpetually searching for ways to make money with the least amount of work possible. These dogs are skilled in the art of traveling to conferences about social media and then live-tweeting the presentations with cool-looking hashtags. These are the dogs you should emulate. You need to become proficient with terms like “early adopter” and “thought leader” and “building an online brand.”
Of course you’ll have to start a blog, and you’ll need a blog consultant who will help you manage your SEO and your Google page rank. The most important thing about blogging is to post something every single day, whether you really have anything to say or not. Humans who read blogs don’t really care about content; they just want to see words on their screen day after day after day. You should also have your picture made professionally and feature it prominently on your blog’s home page. It’s important that this picture oozes trust, as in Trust me, I’m a social media guru! For reference, here’s one used by one of my clients:
The next step is to get a Facebook page for your blog and ask dogs via Twitter to “like” the Facebook page. Now, I know it may seem a bit desperate and pathetic to use one social media platform to beg others to like you on another social media platform–and, frankly, it is desperate and pathetic–but believe me when I say that this will work. After all, dogs are innately good at begging! And liking! You’ll have to put all your preconceived notions about how things are done on a shelf, because this social media business is a whole new world.
Once you’ve mastered all of these key steps, you’ll be able to just sit back and watch the money roll in. Your human will be able to work less, which is, after all, what all humans crave–I think they call it “work-life balance.” With all that extra time on her hands, your human will be spending more quality time with you and will stop worrying that you’re lonely. Your status as Top Dog will be safe for years and years to come.
Oh, and one last piece of advice: Watch out for the ferrets on Twitter. They’re related to weasels and are not to be trusted.
[box type=”note” style=”rounded” border=”full”]Big Legal Brain is pleased to announce the launch of Dear Ninja Dog, an advice column offering advice to animals who happen to be owned by lawyers. Have a question? Contact Ninja Dog and you may get an answer.[/box]