4 Ways to Constantly Create Social Media Content
If your job is to post on social media on behalf of your government agency, chances are you will, at some point, run out of ideas. One of the best tricks is to establish a continuous system for the constant generation of ideas. It’s important that this is something you always do, so here are some resources and techniques to have on hand.
1. Set up Google alerts
This type of email alert will go to your inbox and allow you to monitor what’s posted online about your city, agency or event. It can also give you insight into what people want to know from or about your community. You can choose the keywords or phrases you want to monitor. Be sure to enclose your keywords in quotation marks, such as “city of ______”, to narrow down the alerts you receive. Combining this with another term like “ranked best for” or “was voted best” is a good technique for getting an alert if your agency or city has been ranked by a publication. Use these ads as the basis for social media posts.
2. Set up a Facebook “watch list”
This feature of the Facebook Insights panel allows you to see the performance of other pages. I encourage you to “watch” the Facebook pages your audience follows, as well as similar jurisdictions that are doing exceptionally well on social media. Facebook will alert the other Page’s managers that it has been added to a watchlist, but it will not specifically identify your Page.
Monitoring the pages on your watchlist will give you a bit of data on how well (or poorly) their posts are performing. It’s a great way to see what types of content can work well for your page and get several ideas for your own posts along the way.
3. Cover live events
Government agencies are no strangers to organizing events. Whether it’s a board or committee meeting, a seasonal event or a community activity, public bodies host many events throughout the year. Often we stop promoting once we have bodies on the doorstep. However, event coverage is one of the best ways to generate rich social media content. Live-tweet activities as decisions are made, share real-time photos as citizens participate in activities, and even record a video and upload it directly to YouTube. Be sure to promote an event hashtag so your audience can follow online.
4. Convert single messages into campaigns
Generate more content by turning a standalone post into a longer campaign. Companies do this all the time, and it can also be a great content technique for government agencies. For example, suppose you want to promote Bike to Work Day. Typically, this might involve posting an announcement on Facebook, as well as sharing a tweet or two. However, turning this single message into a campaign may involve separate posts showing photos from last year’s event, bike safety reminders and perhaps photos of bikes in front of City Hall or the county building.
A little creativity can go a long way in creating a campaign experience that gives you plenty of content to work with on social media.