Facebook has numerous pages for local family readiness groups. The Tennessee National Guard Family Readiness Group Facebook page has 117 members. The page has an active wall and discussion board and also posts upcoming events, photos and related sites and links.
This page is open to all dependents of Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard personnel. It has 1,681 members. Features include discussion boards, photos, active wall and links to related groups.
Army Spouses has 2,707 members. This group is for spouses whose husbands or wives are in the Army and can understand what it is like to have to say goodbye to them when they leave, whether it be for boot camp, training or deployment. Similar to the FRG page, there is an active wall, discussion board, related groups and links. Members can also post pictures or just make new friends who are in similar situations.
And don’t just use photos from events on posts – get photos of family members who are serving and post them. Families want to see the good things their Soldiers are doing during a deployment.
While spouses’ clubs and FRG groups are great ways to share information that’s relevant to families, getting senior leaders in on the process is also ideal. LTG Helmick provides updates to the Fort Bragg community through his page, including asking questions and making announcements about events. Leaders like GEN Odierno provide updates from in theater – which is key to keeping family members connected during a deployment.
Dialogue and discussion are key for any forum, but especially any that are community or groups based. You have to be willing to answer questions as they come and engage in discussions.
Straight problems – Someone has an issue with your product or service and has laid out exactly what went wrong. This type of feedback is negative in the sense that it paints your business in a poor light, but it can be helpful in exposing real problems that need to be dealt with.Constructive Criticism – Even more helpful is when the comment comes with a suggestion attached. Many customers — including some of your most loyal — will use social media to suggest ways in which you can improve your product or service. While this type of feedback may point out your flaws, and is thus negative, it can be extremely helpful to receive.Merited Attack – While the attack itself may not be merited, the issue that catalyzed it does have merit in this type of negative feedback. Essentially, you or your company did something wrong, and someone is angry.Trolling/Spam – The difference between trolling and a merited attack are that trolls have no valid reason for being angry at you. Also in this category are spammers, who will use a negative comment about your product or service (whether true or not) to promote a competing service.Responding – for straight problems & constructive criticism, a response is usually necessary. It’s a great way to show your audience that you are listening to them and take their input seriously. You’ll build loyalty & trust by responding quickly! As for merited attacks, it’s important to keep your cool. These may not require a response, as fans will sometimes “self-police” and set the record straight themselves.
Content – you have to have quality information for your audience. If you only post dated or irrelevant information, you’ll never have success with social media.Conversation – dialogue with your community! Have a voice! Be personable!Community – build a community. Enable the key voices in your group. And remember that you don’t always get to pick who your strongest advocates will be.
FRSA FRG Family and spouses briefing
Social Media Strategies for Military Spouses and Dependents<br />
Why social media?<br />Keeping families connected is mission essential.<br />Facebook, blogs and other social networking sites are great ways to keep military families and Family Readiness Groups connected.<br />
The glossary<br />Social Networking:<br /><ul><li>Facebook
You Tube: 924 million unique visitors each year</li></ul>7/19/2010<br />
American teens sent an average of 3,146 texts a month in 2009<br />That’s 10 text messages per hour they are not in school or sleeping, according to research by The Nielsen Company. <br />
DTM 09-026<br />The Department of Defense Policy on social networking:<br />NIPRNET configured to allow access to social media<br />Restrictions should be temporary and commensurate with risk<br />Agencies outside of public affairs may use social media in an official capacity, but must coordinate with public affairs/operations security staff<br />7/19/2010<br />
Operations Security<br />Social networking presents opportunities – and risks.<br />EDUCATION is considered the key requirement that will keep family members and Soldiers safe on-line.<br />Train your friends, spouses and FRG groups on basic operations security – what can and can’t be posted.<br />Always ask permission before posting personally identifiable information on-line<br />
Facebookwww.facebook.com<br />Benefits:<br /> Connect to a large public audience or smaller private audience<br /> Discussion boards<br /> Photo-sharing<br />Direct messaging<br />
Benefits<br />With over 500 million users, there’s a good chance most of your community is already on <br />Easy to tailor the site to your needs.<br />Easy to use and update<br />Multiple administrators eliminate burden<br />Allows family members who don’t have AKO access to participate.<br />
So what’s the difference?<br />Pages vs. Groups<br />Pages are better for brands, businesses, bands, movies, or celebrities who want to interact with their fans or customers without having them connected to a personal account, and have a need to exceed Facebook’s 5,000 friend cap.<br />Groups are great for organizing on a personal level and for smaller scale interaction around a cause.<br />
In an open group, anyone can join and see information<br />Post information about events/activities<br />
options for sharing content/format your page<br />Choose the amount of information you want to be viewable to non-members.<br />
Discussion Boards<br />Discussion boards allow you the opportunity to post information and begin conversation on a variety of topics.<br />Members of your group can also start their own discussions.<br />
Facebook- as a Command Information Tool<br />Lt. Gen. Frank Helmick, Commanding General, XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg, is on Facebook.<br />
Virtual FRG<br />www.armyFRG.org<br />Interface includes topics and focus areas of interest to Soldiers and their families.<br />Benefits: secure platform behind AKO.<br />Negatives: family members outside of AKO can’t participate.<br />Some consider the platform too complex to update.<br />
Blogginghttp://armylive.dodlive.mil<br />A blog is a conversational web site, typically offering news or opinion on a certain topic. <br />Companies or individuals may blog<br />Blogs should be written conversationally, and should be short – think op-ed length and e-mail tone.<br />Determine how your organization is currently being talked about in the blogosphere, and see how your blog can help you join the conversation.<br />
Blogs<br />Benefits:<br /> Caters to niche audiences<br />Easily accessible and readable<br />Provides the opportunity to screen comments prior to posting<br />
TWITTER<br />www.twitter.com<br /> -a micro-blogging tool that updates in 140 characters or less.<br />-updates are referred to as “Tweets”<br />
Interaction & Feedback<br />Users can easily share their Feedback using Twitter.<br />
YouTube - video sharing<br />www.youtube.com<br />YouTube is the #1 most popular video-sharing Web site<br />Watch, comment and share video clips<br />You Tube is the 2nd largest search engine, next to Google.<br />Chief of Staff of the Army, Gen. George Casey spends a few minutes in an informal video chat with Soldiers. Gen. Casey has done nearly two dozen episodes, labeled, “Chief Cams.”<br />
Don’t be afraid to use information from other sites<br />
Map out a clear objective<br />Keep your audience in mind<br /> - The way your social media site is set up will determine who will use it<br />Focus on creating a comfortable communication medium<br /> - Establish an inviting site for your specified audience and regulate only when necessary<br />Keep operations security paramount<br /> - Never post sensitive information in a public forum, even if it’s password protected.<br />Helpful Hints<br />
Helpful Hints<br />Remember it’s a relationship tool, not an advertising tool<br />Be wary of social media overload<br /> - You may not need to use all sites out there – be selective!<br />Link identities together<br /> - Use the same image for all accounts<br />
Handling a negative conversation<br />suggests: <br />Be clear about your comment policy<br /><ul><li>OK to screen for profanity, abusive language & spam
Don’t delete simply because it’s negative</li></ul>Identify the type of comment<br /><ul><li>Straight problems
For spam, remove ASAP! </li></ul>Remember: visitors are entitled to their own opinions! <br />
Take aways:<br />Determine which platform fits your mission: and have a plan before you begin<br />Don’t be afraid to adjust fire<br />Don’t focus on the negatives<br />Create team - involve as many people as possible<br />Get your FRSA/spouse/kids engaged<br />Have a comments policy<br />
Creating a Facebook fan page <br />Select this one. <br />Name your page.<br /> Ex: Fort Bliss Family Readiness Group<br />
Creating a Facebook fan page <br />1. Just like with the group, you can upload a photo and enter information. <br />2. Click here to edit your page’s information. <br />3. Once finished, you can share the page by posting it on your profile. <br />
Creating a Facebook fan page <br />Here are some of the settings and applications you can enable for your page. <br />
Creating a Facebook fan page <br />Here are more of the settings and applications you can enable for your page. <br />
Creating a Facebook fan page <br />Once you’ve finished editing the page, click “publish this page” so people will know it’s out there!<br />
Creating a Facebook group<br />2.At the top right hand corner there will be a button that says “Create a New Group”. <br />1. Click on the “Groups” button in the bottom left hand corner of your screen<br />
Creating a Facebook group<br />This is where you will name your group. <br /> Ex: Fort Bliss family readiness group<br />Here you choose what network you want your group to be available to… Suggest you chose Global – which allow people in all Facebook networks to find your group.<br />Here you will write a brief description of what the purpose of your group is. This will be shown at the top of your group’s page when guests view your page.<br />Under Group Type you will decide how you want your group categorized.<br /> Even if you made your group “Closed”, people who search for your group and visit your page will see the description you wrote for your group<br />What is the name of your office? <br /> Ex: Family Readiness Group, FMWR<br />If you would like to list a POC’s e-mail <br />you can, but it is not required.<br />Does your organization have a website?<br />Where is your office or where are your <br />meetings located?<br />EX: Fort Bliss, Tx<br />You will then hit “save changes” and your group will be created!<br />
Creating a Facebook group<br />Now, to customize your page… <br />Here you will have the option to browse your computer for a photo to include with your group. If you have a logo or a group photo you can use that here. This photo will be seen when people do a search for your group/similar groups.<br />Make sure you click this box!<br />
Creating a Facebook group<br />Once you have completed filling out the information on this page, click Save Changes. <br />A box will appear that asks you if you want to publish the page, click “publish”. <br />You now have a Facebook Group! <br />
Creating a Facebook group<br />Now it is time to invite people to your group.<br />Who should I let join my group?<br />(If you created under a “dummy” account)- <br />Invite people to XXX (name of your group).<br />If you know the e-mail address of the people you would like to join your group you have the option of inviting them this way. This will be the second option you will see on the page. To enter multiple e-mail addresses separate each with a coma. <br />(If you created under your own account or after you make yourself an admin)- <br />When you click “publish” you will have the option to invite people who you are already friends with on Facebook. <br />If you made yourself an Admin on the group, go to the groups page and choose the option “Invite people to join.”<br />
Talk to your family<br />Educate your spouse and family members on OPSEC, and PII. <br />Basic tips for social media include:<br />-Don’t friend anyone you don’t know on Facebook or social networking platforms<br />-Don’t post deployment information, when you’re going on vacation or when your spouse/parent will be away.<br />-Know how to set your privacy settings, and use them.<br />
Resources<br />7/19/2010<br /><ul><li>U.S. Army on slide share: </li></ul>www.slideshare.net/USArmySocialMedia<br /><ul><li>OPSEC family portal on AKO:</li></ul>https://www.us.army.mil/suite/page/594109<br /><ul><li>CGSC social media 101 video series: http://www.youtube.com/user/USArmyCGSC</li></li></ul><li> Got questions?<br />MAJ Juanita Chang<br />Juanita.email@example.com<br />703.697.1849<br />SSG Dale Sweetnam<br />Dale.firstname.lastname@example.org<br />703.614.0371<br />