UK councils are looking after residents in so many different ways, the need for social media in local government is becoming unquestionable. It forms part of their communications strategy. Online networks help them reach the younger generations, business communities and other groups that might be harder to reach. They get so much more exposure, allowing them to build relationships and further strengthen the community.
Here is how UK councils should be using Twitter:
The most effective way to build a community online is by posting information locals will find useful.
It’s also worth keeping an eye out for great content to share such as news articles, blog posts or relevant expertise. Once all the content goes out, it’s best practice to look out for any engagements and take the extra step to find ongoing discussions to participate in.
When it comes to bad mention it’s necessary to spot the comment and address it as quickly as possible. It’s advised agents respond with factual information to allow for a more objective understanding.
Q&A sessions and surveys are a great way to deepen the level of engagement so locals can feel they are able to influence changes however minor. Questions and discussions encourage interaction and participation.
Councils are also known for promoting local businesses whether it’s through advertising start-ups to their audience or organising useful networking events. It allows businessmen to meet local authorities.
Social media is especially useful when it serves the purpose of warning residents of potential hazards in the area or for educating them on taking precautions. They are able to receive helpful traffic and weather announcements on their mobiles.
Councils can use social media to increase their influence and reach a broader audience. The majority of the community is online and different generations can be found on different social networks. Social media agents can use strategies to reach their overall goals more effectively. Despite the important goals to achieve, it's generally best to post content that is useful to the community, sharing news and advice where appropriate. Social media management tools, like Sendible, can help manage campaigns for promoting local networking events and collecting research through surveys. If you want to find out more, take a look at our whitepaper on how local government can cut expenditure by improving engagement with citizens.