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Putting the “Social” into Social Media

By now it is common knowledge that for our social media efforts to be successful we have to be social. Numerous articles remind us about the importance of engaging our volunteers, donors and advocates. Fewer, however, focus on another aspect of our social media engagement…engaging our staff (whether volunteer or paid) and our board members.

What does this mean exactly?

Sure, your staff and board understand why your organization is using social media in a “big picture” sense but can they articulate how your organization is using social media? Your staff and board understand why it is important to grow your number of followers/fans but are they also followers/fans? Your staff and board probably also understand why it’s important for your social media team to respond to comments and questions on social media but have they ever taken it upon themselves to provide a response? The answer to these questions, unfortunately, is probably a “no” for many organizations.

The preceding questions have gnawed at me for sometime and in an effort to change the answer to a “yes,” I have begun to work on a primer on why an organization’s social media strategy is important to everyone in an organization, not just the marketing and communications team. I do not expect every member of the organization to know all the ins-and-outs of our social media strategy and execution, just as I would not be able to fully grasp every facet of our organization’s programming. At the very least I would like to create a feeling that our staff and board are just as much an important part of our online community as all of our other fans/followers and our social media team because, the truth is, they are.

Wish me luck.

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