Whether you follow political news, or care to see the latest controversial tweet, there is no denying that the Government has increased its presence on the social media stage. In fact, a 2018 Hootsuite report stated that the expectation for the government to integrate digital services with social media has doubled to 40 percent over the past two years. What does this mean? It means that if you’re a government organization, and you’ve been treating your social media channels like the space underneath your couch and paying it a visit only once a month, it’s time to make some changes.
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85 percent of government organizations have already discovered how crucial social media platforms are in 2018. However, in order to ensure citizens’ expectations go further than using these platforms as a digital soapbox, it requires two-way engagement, an area where government agencies are perceived to be lacking. In order to change this perception, agencies should set social media goals to determine how best to implement these tools and further their mission. Where is the best place to start on this journey you ask? First, let’s get a grasp on the latest social media trends!
All About Authenticity
Arguably, the most important of these trends, but one of the hardest to achieve, is building trust with your audience through an authentic voice. Agencies can do this by sharing behind the scenes videos of their events, interviews with leaders and influencers, exposing real stories from the community, and utilizing live video on platforms such as Facebook. Whether through video, digital display, or engagement with your audience, your organization can capture the attention and trust of your audience by focusing on becoming more human and personal.
We faced a similar challenge like this when the National Vaccine Program Office approached us to target audiences with information on vaccinations and immunizations for infants, children, and teenagers; a subject known for being particularly controversial, with a strong divide in opinions among American parents. We developed and created the “5 Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child” infographic and animation companion for distribution on the web and social media. The main objective of this project was to not only make something engaging and informative, but also authentic. With this topic, no matter the level of authenticity and friendliness, people will still have their opinions. However, this video allowed us to provide the client with a positive and reassuring message that in turn gave them credibility.
Communication In Crisis
What makes social media so necessary for government agencies is its ability to connect people in real time during major crises. In today’s world, people expect to receive updates and responses as quickly as possible. No matter what government related field you are in, political or military for example, any high profile successes, failures, natural disasters, or attacks could put the spotlight on you. Best practices currently being implemented by organizations are keeping teams ready at all times to respond immediately on social channels. This is where the use of video comes in again, as the ability to post LIVE streams of current events allows audiences around the world to stay aware of what’s going on. Organizations around the world are utilizing virtual reality (VR) in a proactive way, by creating digitally immersive content that can help prepare citizens for natural disasters before they happen.
Metrics Meets Mission
During Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton’s presidential campaigns, $81m was spent on Facebook advertising alone. This kind of percentage spending is thought to continue to rise for organizations based on the amount of ROI they are experiencing. This means that social metrics will be heavily tied to agency objectives, in that social media could take precedence over traditional advertising. U.S. Senator of New Jersey, Cory Booker stated, “When we embraced social media, we took more control of the Newark narrative. We increased responsiveness towards residents. We drew more of our constitutes in to participate in government.” With all of this reliance on social platforms, there is now pressure for these organizations to modernize by investing in the leading digital and CX practices, which leads in to the final trend…
Time For Tech
One of the most common words used when discussing growth and modernization for a company is technology, and it is pertinent in this day and age if you want to make the most out of your social media. From immersive technology, to virtual assistants and messaging apps, and even “wearables” such as Fitbits, strategy and growth experts are finding ways to utilize these tools to create the most engaging and responsive experience for their audiences. For example, in the case of “wearable” technology, there are developments being made, so that those who wear them in places like theme parks can get notifications on national emergencies. The possibilities are endless.
What’s Next For Your Organization?
It’s clear to see why embracing this new world of social media is so crucial to the future of your organization. Whether it be improving response time, implementing new technologies, or increasing engagement levels, it all starts with developing a strategy, an objective, and setting goals. Tell us below how you are looking to improve your g organization through social media, and we can help you get the ball rolling!
Let’s chat about your social media goals!
CATMEDIA is an award-winning Inc. 500 company based in Atlanta, Georgia. Founded in 1997, the company specializes in advertising, creative services, media production, program management, training, and human resource management. As a Women Owned Small Business (WOSB), CATMEDIA provides world-class customer service and innovative solutions to government and commercial clients. Current CATMEDIA clients include Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Office of Personnel Management (OPM), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).