Good Reads You Might Have Missed: The Strategy of Social Media

Between ethics, legal considerations, and engagement tactics, there’s a lot to get wrong—and right—about social media. Read on for a few archived strategies to follow.

A decade ago, a good social media strategy might have been based around Facebook and Twitter alone. But social media, and the networks we use to access it, have changed a lot—and so, too, have the ways that we engage with it.

The goal isn’t to get 50,000 likes every time out; it’s to engage with members and stakeholders. But even that less-lofty goal comes with some complexities that association pros should take the time to understand. With that in mind, here are a few stories from the archives that social pros might find informative:

How to Create a Social Media Policy That Protects Your Association. “There are a lot of legal issues that arise with social media,” explained Katharine Meyer, director of ethics at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, which means that building a policy that accounts for matters like the risks of copyright infringement and potential for defamation should be considered at the beginning of the process—and explained to employees and volunteers alike.

Social Media Campaigns Can Improve Engagement with Revenue-Generating Content. Can you tie social campaigns to dollars rather than the more nebulous concepts of engagement? That’s the case that WorkerBee.TV President Dan Stevens made, noting that micromarketing approaches can help to build a funnel to your organization that can increase prospects and revenue from existing members, or even monetize the view itself through advertising. “Micromarketing gives awareness and pulls people into the full story on your ecosystem and your brand, where you can monetize with advertising or pay per view,” he said.

Ensure Ethical Use of Your Association’s Social Media Platforms. Mark McCormack, the senior director for analytics and research at EDUCAUSE, as well as Maame Nyamekye, a staff attorney with the National Association for Realtors, expanded on the legal parameters of using social media into deeper considerations around ethics, including building a social media policy: “While a comprehensive policy will not eliminate all risk associated with the use of social media, it can help minimize the risk,” the authors wrote.

Should Volunteers Groups Have Separate Social Media Accounts? A hot topic in the ASAE Collaborate community [ASAE member login required] a couple of years ago was the idea of volunteer committees launching Facebook pages or other social media presences. This raised some important questions that consultants Hilary Marsh and Sue Young weighed in on for this piece. “Everyone has the same technology. They can do something that goes viral. It can do tremendous damage to an organization’s reputation,” Young stated.

Turn Chapter Members Into Social Media Influencers. Then again, maybe you want to leverage the voices within your organization on social platforms in thoughtful ways … at least in the case of individual chapters. Peggy Hoffman, FASAE, CAE, president of Mariner Management, highlighted how the American Society of Landscape Architects allowed its individual chapters to run its Instagram account for a day—successfully.

Uncover Your Social Media Sweet Spots. What happens when you have a lot of followers but need to figure out the best way to engage them? That was the challenge ASIS International, with 100,000 followers across five major social networks, faced. Gabriella Lehimdjian, the group’s communications director, laid out the strategies ASIS used to uncover its best social opportunities.

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Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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