September 15, 2011

I had a great time today at the SC Municipal Clerks and Treasurers Institute held at the Newberry Firehouse Conference Center in Newberry SC.

Using social media to reach the public
View more presentations from Curtis Rogers

Near the end of the presentation, I have attendees work in groups to discuss these three points. Here are some of their responses:

  • How to get more involved in social media
a.      Actually use Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube
b.      Recruit volunteers to monitor social media accounts to be able to answer questions other people post that staff may not have time to get to
c.       Council and Mayor do not allow Facebook (in my opinion, this is an impediment to progress on many levels of communication and only tends to hurt the image of the community)
d.      Having social media outlets shows a great move towards transparency.
e.      Allows you to provide updates and information to your community members.
  • How to make social media more effective
a.      Put out more financial information (transparency)
b.      Have the mayor do a video update on YouTube on that community
c.       Have specific pages for various parts of the community such as Farmer’s Market, Fire Dept, etc.
d.      Highlight new businesses in the community
e.      Post all public notices on social media
f.        Provides current and accurate information
g.      Makes local government accountable
  • Next steps to get more involved
a.      Actually USE it!
b.      Post more links to other things in the community
c.       Get YouTube account – post videos that are like commercials for the community
d.      Use to post information about your community

I was really surprised at the few communities that are not allowed to even use social media.  Unfortunately this is so short sighted and hinders communication within the community.  However, it was great to hear from the folks that are using social media, especially Facebook pages, in their communities to get the word out about what they are doing and to engage their communities in what they do.

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