If you follow the eventing world a little bit you might have seen that the owner of Emily King‘s top horse, Brookleigh, decided to sell him…If you haven’t, I copied below Mary’s plead for help in creating a syndicate that would allow Emily to keep the horse.
Then it turns out that a proactive teenager as Emily King is, she put together a poster which she used on her social media to draw more attention to the case and to find supporters.
I first saw the information on Emily King’s Twitter and thought ‘damn I hope they find someone to buy the horse’ . I then read comments online under various mentions of this news and those comments are the reason for this post.
Vast majority of feedback on Emily’s initiative had been of course positive but the not-so-positive part made me think ( I won’t cite all the comments here, if you are interested in the dynamics of equestrian community I do encourage you to have a scan through replies on Mary King‘s Facebook). You might also want to have a read on Horse & Hound Forum: Mary King’s daughter losing her ride on Brookleigh…..?
Some people thought using social media to raise money for syndicate was “unprofessional”, some that it was a scam, others that Mary King should have sold one of her top horses and buy Brookleigh for her daughter. As I said, reading the comments made me think about more general use of publicity, gaining awareness and rising interest through use of the Internet powers and thought I would share my opinion.
TRY IT AND TRY IT AND TRY IT AGAIN
OK, if you are someone seeking funding/support/encouragement and you really want to do something, don’t read all of the comments I linked to above 😉 Just try it. Use the social media to tell people about what you are doing, why you are doing it and why their support matters. If someone has a problem with you trying to make your luck then this is something they need to address, not you.
From my experience, people you least expect might be the ones who help you. If not at the very minute of you speaking with them then perhaps in the future.
I can’t comprehend the contempt with which some people like to talk about those who are self-promoting themselves in one way or the other. I am not talking here about self-obsessed celebrities who would do anything to be seen everywhere and all the time…I am talking about people who promote what they do in the world where it is not enough to be good at something to be seen. Certainly not in the equestrian world of the twenty first century.
The world loves the known. A nice, hard working, committed rider who sits quietly inside hermetic yard somewhere dreaming to be spotted by someone with a great horse to take them to Olympics is not exactly how the sport works these days. In fact, not many things work like that nowadays. Don’t get me wrong, I loved International Velvet and all those unpolished diamond type stories that sometimes crop up. However, I also admire people who appreciate that life is short and if they are going to ever get where they wish to get, they need to get out there and say hello to people who would never otherwise visited their little one horse set up in the country…
It takes guts and determination to honestly put yourself out there, to say, this is what I aim to do – now look at me fail. It’s hard for amateur riders seeking funding but even more so for those who ride for a living.
FACEBOOK, TWITTER, BLOGS, INSTAGRAM AND THE LIKES…
The way I see it is that we all have a choice as to what we read, who and on where we follow or who we want to know about. I personally prefer Twitter and Blogs out of all “ideas/thoughts/social” sharing platforms. I have no issue with people promoting their projects, dreams, goals, aims on Internet. I don’t think the platform on which we seek publicity for anything should be labelled as “unprofessional”. It’s more the way someone does something, how they conduct themselves, how they write (and how they reply…) than where they do it that determines the pro aspect for me.
THEREFORE, GOOD LUCK TO EMILY!
I hope Mary King and Emily find the right bunch of people to help with the purchase of Brookleigh – would be great to see Emily keeping the ride.
What are your views regarding using social media to fight your way through?