Leveraging Social Media as a Communications Tool


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A Library 2.0 presentation for the Texas Library Association 2011 conference.

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Leveraging Social Media as a Communications Tool

  1. 1. Leveraging Social Media as a Communications Tool Sandra Fernandez Manager of Public Relations Houston Public Library
  2. 2. Old Media to New Leveraging Social Media
  3. 3. New Ways of Connecting Leveraging Social Media
  4. 4. Social Media is aconversation… Leveraging Social Media
  5. 5. …between actual humans Leveraging Social Media
  6. 6. Basics of social networking Online communities Members feel a sense of belonging Users create “profiles” They look for and add friends Receive recommendations from their network Easy for members to share creatively: photos, videos, music, etc Leveraging Social Media
  7. 7. Social Media inPublic Relations The purpose of PR hasn’t changed – we build relationships Social Media creates better opportunities to interact with customers/audiences No longer filtering information through traditional media Leveraging Social Media
  8. 8. Libraries The library has no barriers – available to everyone The library brings down the walls surrounding information – everyone can access everything Leveraging Social Media
  9. 9. Libraries The library invites participation – we want YOU! The library creates community – spaces and groups Leveraging Social Media
  10. 10. Libraries The library is human – connects with real people at all levels of service Leveraging Social Media
  11. 11. Library 2.0 – social media inlibraries Reduces barriers – updates are available 24/7 Brings down the walls surrounding information – can be accessed from anywhere (Internet) Invites participation – we want to hear from YOU! Creates community – spaces and groups online to extend real life Leveraging Social Media
  12. 12. Getting Started So… where do you start? Leveraging Social Media
  13. 13. 4 Ps of Social Media Prepare Pick your starting point Pay attention Participate Leveraging Social Media
  14. 14. Prepare Convince others Why use social media? Word of mouth communication is the oldest and most powerful form of communication We trust what our friends tell us We trust what our friend’s friends tell us We trust anything enough people tell us From Lach Mullen, Fort Bend County Office of Emergency Management Leveraging Social Media
  15. 15. Prepare Goals & strategy What is success? What are your social media goals? Examples: Return on Engagement (ROE) Promotion Build rapport Make it part of your overall communications plan: Integrate social media into daily activity Make sure your updates are in line with the priorities and messages of your organization Leveraging Social Media
  16. 16. Prepare Resources Money most things are free, but not everything do you have a budget for accounts, equipment, access? People Who is going to monitor/participate social media? Will this need to be added to their job descriptions? employee evaluations? Leveraging Social Media
  17. 17. Prepare Resources, cont. Equipment Are you behind a firewall? Can you access the networks needed? Do you have a digital camera? video camera? web enabled mobile phone? computer that will allow you to install tools such as TweetDeck? Do you have mobile internet access? Leveraging Social Media
  18. 18. Prepare Policies & procedures Time issues How quickly can you respond? How much time will this take? Do you need official policy? Who is empowered to respond? Which departments/personnel need to be brought into the project? IT PR Customer Service Leveraging Social Media
  19. 19. Prepare Target Who are you trying to reach? Residents Businesses/Industry Media Other government officials Know your target Networks Language Direct communication Leveraging Social Media
  20. 20. Prepare Other items Make sure you have master file of access logins, with others aware of its existence and location Leveraging Social Media
  21. 21. Pick your starting point Choose your social media networks Pick one based on your targets Social Networks – Facebook Meeting, finding, connecting, promoting, discussing Multimedia – YouTube, Slideshare Sharing, learning Bookmarking – Delicious, Diigo Link sharing, “the cloud” News – Digg News sharing, opinion sharing Leveraging Social Media
  22. 22. Pick your starting point Pick one based on your targets, cont. Reviews – Yelp Sharing reviews of companies, services Blogs – Blogger, Wordpress Opinion sharing, news sources Microblogs – Twitter, Yammer Sharing short updates Wikis – Wikipedia Collaboration Location based social media (newest trend) Foursquare, Gowalla Leveraging Social Media
  23. 23. Pick your starting pointRecommendations FACEBOOK More than 500 million active users 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day Average user has 130 friends People spend over 700 billion minutes per month on Facebook Fastest Growing Demographic on Facebook: Women Over 55 Leveraging Social Media
  24. 24. Pick your starting pointRecommendations YouTube Second most used search engine online Share your videos Favorite recommended videos Embed on your site Free hosting City Channel Leveraging Social Media
  25. 25. Pick your starting pointRecommendations Twitter Micropublishing Free opt-in SMS and Mobile updates As easy to use as texting Clean, simple, fast Can be tied into PIER Lots of buzz! Leveraging Social Media
  26. 26. Pick your starting pointRecommendations WordPress Popular blogging tool Set up a blog in 15 minutes Lets you control message informally Gives you a personal touch Leveraging Social Media
  27. 27. Pick your starting point Open personal account Get comfortable Start! Create plan for your organization Open organizational account. Start! If your resources are available, pick another and start there. Leveraging Social Media
  28. 28. Pick your starting point Build your network Friends Colleagues Directories: Twellow Industry listings Leveraging Social Media
  29. 29. Pick your starting point Start Today! Leveraging Social Media
  30. 30. Pay attention Listen to what’s being said about your organization, your city Twitter Search Google Search (blogs & news) Social Mention Read what others are writing RSS Feeds Google Reader Bloglines Leveraging Social Media
  31. 31. Pay attention Who are others following, talking about Friend your friend’s friends What is being said about your topic Are other blogs linking to yours? Watch the trends Technology & tools Topics and discussions Leveraging Social Media
  32. 32. Houston Public Library Participation Leveraging Social Media
  33. 33. Houston Public Library Updates Leveraging Social Media
  34. 34. Houston Public Library PROMOTE PROMOTE PROMOTE Leveraging Social Media
  35. 35. Houston Public Library PROMOTE PROMOTE PROMOTE www.twitter.com/houstonlibrary www.facebook.com/houstonlibrary Leveraging Social Media
  36. 36. Participate Be authentic Be honest Spend time to build trust Contribute to the conversation Respond to questions, clarify, add more info Press releases aren’t enough Promote via your non-social networks Stay engaged Leveraging Social Media
  37. 37. Participate How to use Facebook Set up a page for your organization http://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php Address, Hours, Website Advertise your Page Get a “vanity url” for your page Monitor results Leveraging Social Media
  38. 38. Participate How to use Twitter Post short recaps of News Releases Post quirky things: show your personality Post data Chat with people Virtual police scanner “Hashtag” yourself and use Hashtags Leveraging Social Media
  39. 39. Participate How to use YouTube Load “backgrounder” videos Load informal commentary on News Releases Load relevant breaking news as appropriate Capture video of interviews and post unedited Favorite other relevant videos Comment, comment, comment! Leveraging Social Media
  40. 40. Houston Public Library Successes Created strong online communities for library customers Increased customer participation, support and actions in response to social media updates Effective use of social networks to reach influencers and “publishers” Leveraging Social Media
  41. 41. Things I’ve learned The tool isn’t what’s important, what’s important is how you use it. Be aware of what you’re trying to do. It’s important to have a goal when approaching these tools. Be aware of your limitations. Social media can be time intensive, and most of us have limited resources, so don’t try to do everything at once. Leveraging Social Media
  42. 42. Things I’ve learned Get everyone on the same page. If you begin engaging your audiences, then be prepared to start receiving complaints, suggestions and questions via those new channels, whether that’s your intent or not. You will need to have public relations or community relations, information technology, and your organization’s customer service department all aware of the activities, and have made decisions on how you’re going to handle inquiries before you receive them. Leveraging Social Media
  43. 43. Things I’ve learned Traditional media is reaching less and less Social media can help you Take it slow Invest the time Build trust Learn from others Get started LEARN FROM WHAT YOU’VE DONE, & ADJUST. Leveraging Social Media
  44. 44. Contact meSandra FernandezSandra.Fernandez@houstontx.govwww.twitter.com/sandrasayswww.sandrasays.comwww.librarypr.org Leveraging Social Media
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