Some social media things that local government should be doing now

Here’s a list of things that we think local government could start doing now to be more effective at being social

  • Set up a Twitter (customer service) handle specifically so that people can ask you about local services and get advice
  • Create a Facebook page that is about the place you love not about the organisations you work for.  That is too boring. People like to talk about where they live.  Coventry seem to have got this.  You can still have a page for your organisation but just don’t stop there
  • Set up your social media tech so that you can listen to what is happening locally.  Even if this is just key words on or in Seesmic.
  • Start using your Facebook page(s) to help residents, to answer questions and to talk to customers
  • Create project teams internally to take some social media risks
  • Tell everyone you are on Facebook and Twitter: don’t hide it at the bottom of your website
  • Take a look at the impression that Youtube creates about the place you care about. Do something about it if you don’t like what you see
  • Have a plan to use Twitter and Facebook during emergencies and for local crisis management.  People will turn to social media when they need help
  • Get someone important to go public in favour of  using social media in your organisation so the troops know they have back-up
  • Set the front line free to start using social media.  People already want to engage with libraries, leisure centres, schools etc. using social media.  So individual services need their own pages, their own Twitter handles and so forth.  Ask yourself if your customers can book a class at your local leisure centre on their Facebook page.  If they can’t why not? There’ll be an app for that!

Like all good lists we’ve stopped at 10.  But we’d like people to share this and add more.
For more info about how Participate can help you with your social media engagement contact @participateuk or if  you’re old school 🙂 email jonathanbradley@participate.uk.com.
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