The use of social media gave people the freedom and power to share their stories and experiences. Some abused this which resulted in the proliferation of false information and fake news. Fortunately, companies as well as government agencies recognized how they can utilize the same platform to take control of the narrative that is being put out about them and their service to the community.
On this special conference edition, Katie Nelson joins Justice Clearinghouse from the IACP Conference in Cleveland, Ohio. Katie is the Social Media and Public Relations Coordinator at the Mountain View Police Department in California where she is in charge of the PD’s social media accounts and serving as its Public Information Officer. She contributes to the IACP Center for Social Media through blogging and serving as a keynote speaker.
Katie delves into the critical role social media is currently playing in our society discussing topics like:
- The two major types of engagement most organizations and their social media manager must be familiar with.
- The prevalence of internet and social media use and the digital-first mindset that most people are growing accustomed to when it comes to connecting to organizations.
- Fostering positive and proactive engagement with the community that serves as deposits to the community trust that have benefits should there be a crisis and an example of how this is done.
- The important qualities of content – shareable, relatable and interesting to your audience.
- Social media as a solution to tackle the difficult conversations, raising awareness and educate the community as seen in Mountainview’s PSA video tackling homelessness.
- The digital risk management role that the social media team plays..
- In discerning rumor from true stories in controversial topics as seen in as Mountainview’s drone program.
- In responding to critical events as New Zealand Police’s response to the Christchurch shooting.
- The different channels that may be utilized by government agencies to get their message and stories across to the target audience.
- The characteristics of each social media platform, the demographics of users, and how to best utilize each channel.
- Live examples from Mountainview PD and New Zealand Police on how to correctly implement this.
- The heightened level of customer service through social listening and proactive efforts using a Mountainview sold-out rave concert as an example.
- Reputation management during a crisis where an agency may tackle the rapid spread of misinformation through timely updates and press release as demonstrated by Mountainview PD in the YouTube Shooting incident.
- The importance of sharing authentic stories and moments to the followers and understanding and capturing what the audience wants and needs.
- Tips and tricks in creating online content that must be optimized for mobile viewing and is in line with the products and features that is most utilized in each social media platform.
- The following topics were reviewed during the Q&A:
- Insights and suggestions on social media management policies and procedures.
- Archiving content from Snapchat.
- What mobile optimized content means.
- The composition/organization of a social media management team.
- How the community and media is notified and updated with press releases and other information.
- How MVPD is utilizing LinkedIn.
- Sharing information on cases with ongoing investigations to the public.
- Guidelines on engagement with followers and responding to their queries and comments.
- “I gathered lots of information that is useful.” — Dexter
- “The examples and screenshots are always helpful to see real-life examples that another agency has used.” — Marrisa
- “How to change the message so that it is not “Government Speak” for our listeners/readers.” — Sharon
- “Katie was well-spoken and all information was valuable.” –Nancy