Choosing Social Media
Clarify your objectives by answering these questions:
- Why are you using social media?
- Who’s your audience, and what do they want or need?
- How will you promote your social media channels?
- Who’s going to do the work? (Is social media really sustainable given your/your co-workers’ workload?)
- Can you keep your content fresh?
Understanding Social Media
- Consider how running a page for your workplace might differ from maintaining your personal social media accounts.
- Do enough research to understand the medium: How does it work? Does it require participation from multiple parties, or does it function more like a bulletin board?
- Look for pages by other organizations like yours. What are they doing well? What are their readers responding to? What could or would you do differently?
Maintaining Your Pages
- Keep your content fresh, but don’t overdo it; too-frequent posts annoy readers.
- Optimal posting frequency for Facebook is no more than seven posts per week; for Twitter, up to four tweets per day.
- Peak times for most social media: weekdays, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., with a window of particularly strong activity between 1 and 4 p.m. Worst times: nights, Friday afternoons, and weekends. Exception: Blogs like Tumblr, which users are more likely to read in the evening.
- Make sure you understand how users can respond to and share your posts on the channel you’re considering.
- Monitor your page continuously and respond to user queries and comments.
- Give readers a sense of what it’s like to be here now.
- Announce upcoming events.
- Share good news.
- Tell stories about students’ activities.
- Keep up with your alumni.
- Offer congratulations.
- Show readers our offbeat side.
- Give readers a sneak preview of events.
- Remind readers about your services and programs.
Promoting Your Social Media Presence
- Include “University of Alabama” in your account name.
- Link to your social media pages via your website, email signature, and communications with your constituents.
- Tell eTech your social media account name/s so we can connect with you online.
The College’s Facebook page is here: facebook.com/UAArtsSciences/
- Remember that your posts represent your entire division.
- Reread posts critically before launching them.
- Be friendly and direct.
- Proofread every post for grammatical, spelling, punctuation, and factual errors.
- Keep posts short: optimal length is up to 80 characters for Facebook, 100 for Twitter.
- Use photos.
- Use links to provide additional information.
- Avoid “fluff” — post only when you have info to share.
- Use humor carefully.
- Don’t mislead readers with gimmicky language.
- Avoid memes.
- Keep your posts clean and polite.
- Don’t proselytize.
- Keep your cultural references noncontroversial.
- Don’t advertise or infringe.
- When in doubt, leave it out.