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2013 Municipal Series: MCUrgent Beginner Course


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(Course updated March 19, 2013)
MCUrgent is a social media emergency notification system developed by Morris County and used in multi-jurisdictional emergencies. It includes towns as team members in a single Facebook and Twitter emergency notification stream.

This beginner course explains what it is and how municipalities can post messages.

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2013 Municipal Series: MCUrgent Beginner Course

  1. 1. MCUrgent A Shared Emergency Information Network Getting the word out with social mediaCarol A. Spencer, Web Manager Building a Municipal Social PresenceMorris County NJ March 19, 2013
  2. 2. M r i s Count y’ s Shar ed, M t i - or ul j ur i sdi ct i onalEm gency I nf or m i on Net wor k er at What it is. How it works.
  3. 3. What is MCUrgent? • An application that utilizes the power of social media to share official emergency information during an emergency with multi-jurisdictional impact. • Led by Morris County’s Office of Emergency Management, MCUrgent allows all 39 towns to post to a single Twitter feed and Facebook page. • Via a Twitter widget (a small piece of code your web person can grab and use), MCUrgent can be put on any web page. • Individual town emergency notices can be posted to a town’s website, Twitter feed or Facebook page at the same time.
  4. 4. Using Twitter to Share Information Messages can be posted from a desktop, laptop, phone Message can be retrieved from a desktop, laptop, phone Subscription-free access Fast Follow text messages Twitter users can: Retweet (share) Search by #hashtag Share with RSSTrue social media use allows citizen contribution & sharing: Twitterers can add #hashtags to their own postings Twitterers can message MCUrgent
  5. 5. What Twitter IS:•A news service, a microblog•Information-only notification methodology•Technology dependent notification Server overload; “Fail whale” issues•140 characters only Very brief announcements or links to more information•Available on multiple media Computer, laptop, wireless, smartphone, sms, rss reader, ipad, and more•Available without registration
  6. 6. What Twitter is NOT:•A formal, guaranteed notification system – No guarantee that notices will be posted – No guarantee on uptime – No guarantee that applications that pull Twitter feed will function•The sole notification system – TV, radio, Twitter, Facebook, RSS feeds, SMS/text, reverse 9-1-1, email must all be used•Substitute for an official emergency notification service
  7. 7. Our vision of MCUrgent #MCParsip RT 46 WB between New Rd and Rt 202/Parsippany Rd flooded. All lanes closed. 6:37 AM Mar 15 via Twitter thParsippanyMorris Twp Towns create a tweetDenville #hashtag postRiverdaleDover
  8. 8. Our vision of MCUrgent Twitter (MCUrgent)Parsippany Facebook (MCUrgent)Morris Twp Towns create a tweetDenville #hashtag postRiverdaleDover
  9. 9. Our vision of MCUrgent Twitter (MCUrgent)Parsippany Facebook (MCUrgent)Morris Twp Twitter Towns create a tweet (MorrisCountyNJ)Denville #hashtag post Facebook (MorrisCountyNJ)Riverdale TwitterDover (Town feed) Facebook (Town page)
  10. 10. Setting UpHootsuite
  11. 11. Log into with any browserUsername is the generic email used to set up Hootsuite: MC+TownName+NJ@gmail.comPassword is: change#me
  12. 12. Hootsuite Setup: Getting Started Tab
  13. 13. Hootsuite Setup: Locating social networks
  14. 14. Hootsuite Setup: Settings
  15. 15. Hootsuite Setup: Add info about you
  16. 16. Hootsuite Setup: Change password
  17. 17. Hootsuite Setup: Use https, uncheck items
  18. 18. Hootsuite Setup: pull in other information
  19. 19. Hootsuite Setup: RSS example The RSS feed from CarolSpencerNJ on Twitter is “fed” to the MorrisTest account. Each time CarolSpencerNJ posts to Twitter, it also goes out on MorrisTest. Uses? Nat’l Weather Service, TransOptions, etc.
  20. 20. Hootsuite Setup: Social Networks viewable
  21. 21. Hootsuite Setup
  22. 22. Hootsuite Setup: Add your Town networks
  23. 23. Hootsuite Setup: Add your Town networks
  24. 24. Hootsuite Setup: Add your Town networks
  25. 25. Hootsuite Setup: Terminology Social Networks Tabs Streams Posts
  26. 26. Hootsuite Setup: Adding Tabs
  27. 27. Hootsuite Setup: Adding Tabs
  28. 28. Hootsuite Setup: Adding Streams
  29. 29. Hootsuite Setup: Adding Streams
  30. 30. Hootsuite Setup: Adding Streams
  31. 31. Hootsuite Setup is done!Now, we’re ready to post.Post to: MorrisTest for Twitter MyJurisdiction for Facebook
  32. 32. HootsuiteDashboard
  33. 33. Hootsuite Dashboard
  34. 34. Hootsuite Dashboard
  35. 35. Hootsuite Dashboard
  36. 36. Hootsuite Dashboard
  37. 37. Hootsuite Dashboard
  38. 38. Posting with Hootsuite
  39. 39. Hootsuite Dashboard: Let’s try it…1. Post to test accounts (MorrisTest, MyJurisdiction) Click in the ‘Compose message…’ box Enter a test message. Use abbreviations, hash tags. Check off MorrisTest first. Note the number of characters remaining. Check off MyJurisdiction. Note the number of characters remaining. Click the calendar icon. Schedule for 5 minutes from now. Note that the ‘Send Now’ button became ‘Schedule’. Click ‘View date in Publisher’ to see what happens. Click on the floppy drive icon to see that that does. Save your tweet as a draft.
  40. 40. Hootsuite Dashboard: Let’s try it…2. Post to test accounts (MorrisTest, MyJurisdiction) To see your draft posts, click the down arrow next to the floppy drive icon If you see the post you want to send, click on it. Check the social networks to which you want this to go. If you were to check off one of the MCUrgent social networks, you would get a confirming slider to prevent accidental posting to this account. Click the calendar icon. Schedule for 5 minutes from now. Note that the ‘Send Now’ button became ‘Schedule’. Click Schedule. If you still have the ‘Publisher’ calendar open, see your tweet.
  41. 41. Before PostingDouble check before you post Information is accurate Information is authorized for public release Post is 140 characters or less Spelling is accurate Link is accurate Copy it into a new browser window to be sure it goes where you want Date and time are correct if scheduling into the future Selected social networks are the correct ones Once it’s out there, you can delete it but anyone who has read it, has read it. To delete in Hootsuite, hover over the tweet in the ‘sent tweets’ stream and click the x.
  42. 42. A few more things…Searching, deleting, filtering To search Twitter, enter the search criteria in the search box and click the magnifying glass. To create a stream of a particular search term, click “+Add Stream”. Choose a search term or use logic as per examples To create a stream of keywords, enter the terms. Tweets using any of the keywords will be returned. To use hashtags so your comments will be included in a stream using that term, precede your term with a #. Example: #MCLibrary; #Jan25; #gov20; #superbowl, #poltwt To be sure your tweet ends up in someone’s mentions stream, use @ before their Twitter handle.
  43. 43. Hootsuite Tools
  44. 44. Hootsuite ToolsClick any Twitterhandle to getinformation aboutwho they are, theirwebsite, number offollowers / following and more….
  45. 45. Hootsuite Tools
  46. 46. Hootsuite Tools
  47. 47. Hootsuite Tools: Scheduled Tweets
  48. 48. Hootsuite Tools:Analytics
  49. 49. Hootsuite Tools: Interactions
  50. 50. Hootsuite Tools: Interactions
  51. 51. Hootsuite Tools: Applications
  52. 52. MCUrgent: What’s next? • Practice: Use MorrisTest for Twitter and MyJurisdiction for Facebook. (You can only see these on when you’re logged in. These are not live accounts.) • Post: Post to MCUrgent only in a multi-jurisdictional declared emergency OR when whatever has happened impacts multiple towns. For example: Route 46 closed in rush hour • Remember: • MCUrgent on Twitter goes to phones as text messages. Post judiciously. • The public considers weather & major highway closures as emergencies. • If you post that it’s closed, post when it’s open. • Go Mobile: Come to the advanced class when we schedule it to learn how to post from an iPad, tablet or smartphone.
  53. 53. Summary of MCUrgent • What: Emergency notifications from participating towns: MCUrgent • Web: Twitter widget Town info on town website if they want • Social: / .net / .com / .info (Morris County Office of Emergency Management) • SMS: text follow MCUrgent to 40404
  54. 54. Contact Information Carol A. Spencer Digital & Social Media Manager, Morris County Website : Email : or Facebook : Facebook : Twitter : Twitter : (or
  55. 55. MCUrgent A Shared Emergency Information Network Getting the word out with social mediaCarol A. Spencer, Web Manager Building a Municipal Social PresenceMorris County NJ March 19, 2013