Use the power of social media
Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram… where should you start?
Social media can be a powerful tool to raise awareness of your issue among community members, the media, and the decision makers. It is a method of engaging your existing networks – you may be surprised how many others share your concern!
General tips for using social media:
- Be conversational
- Use images and videos wherever possible
- Be aware of and link to current events and topics
- If you’re not sure whether to respond to a comment or a post, respond
Dealing with negativity
- Remember that the most engaging content can also reach the most negative comments
- If you do reply to negativity, don’t reply with the generic ‘thank you for your comment’.
- Show empathy
- Don’t reply to rants
- Don’t censor unless the comments are offensive (racist, sexist, etc.) or a spam
Make sure you know the implications of what you are posting online. Be careful with what you write and who you talk about. Everything published on the web must follow national and state legislation. You can be sued for defamation or copyright if you don’t keep on the right side of the law.
- Consider whether creating a Facebook page would help to increase awareness and support for your petition or issue.
- To create a Facebook page for your campaign or initiative, visit www.facebook.com and follow the instructions.
- Encourage supporters to ‘Like’ your Facebook page.
- Use your personal Facebook account to raise awareness among your online friends.
- Find groups and fan pages related to your campaign and ‘like’ them to stay up to date on these groups.
- Update your page regularly with relevant information and links, and respond to visitor comments.
- Twitter can be useful for directing messages towards politicians and other influential people as many of them have Twitter accounts.
- The more interesting your tweet, the more people are likely to re-tweet it.
- When someone follows you on Twitter, every tweet that you send will appear on their Twitter feed. The more followers you have, the greater the reach of your message.
- Once you have set up your account, search for organisations and profiles with similar interests, and click on the ‘follow’ button to start tracking their tweets.
- Many decision makers have Twitter accounts so tweet your key messages to them.
- Use ‘hashtags’ in your tweets to increase their visibility.
- Connect with users on Twitter by including that user’s Twitter name prefaced by the “@” sign in your tweet.
Join the conversation
If you have Twitter, follow these organisations and join the conversation on alcohol issues:
- Alcohol Advertising Review Board
- Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education
- Alcohol Policy Coalition Victoria
- Alcohol. Think Again
- End Alcohol Advertising in Sport
- Public Health Advocacy Institute of WA
- WA Network of Alcohol and other Drug Agencies
- Alcohol and Drug Foundation