It seems that the time where people, businesses and other entities could decide if they would exist on social media has passed. Now, there are dozens of platforms and billions of users that ensure there are mentions of even the most private entities.
All the social media options can be overwhelming. You want to portray your city with the right message, but still, minimize some of the problems other users have had with social media.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when putting your city on social media.
Controlling the message
Unfortunately, the option to abstain from social media is no longer viable. Whether your city’s residents are complaining about the line at the DMV or they are excited about an upcoming event, your city’s name is on social media.
When you create a social media page for your city, you can control the messages about what happens in your city. Your page gives you a chance to share upcoming events and notifications while allowing residents to learn more about each other’s interests.
What about debates?
One fear that comes with social media is the frequent debates between people who disagree, either with each other or with a decision that affects all of them. It can be frustrating to try to moderate a discussion, especially if it becomes heated.
Like the phone calls, letters and petitions from years past, social media gives you and the others working for the city a chance to see what the residents care about right now. While you may not be able to take direct action against an issue right away, you can learn more about it from the people who care most.
Create clear policies
When you start your city’s social media page, you can make it clear that someone is supervising the page. Let users know certain behaviors will not be tolerated. Many pages have similar policies and will block people who are perpetually causing problems or spreading misinformation.
Also, communicate your expectations to all employees. Let them know what they can share and how they should share it. Your guidelines should also include any consequences for not following the policy.