Social Media and Guiding don't always seem the most natural fit - I don't know about you, but although I am a
prolific *ahem* fairly seasoned blogger, tweeter, facebooker etc, I've not quite got to grips with doing those things as a representative of my unit, district, division or County. Or so I thought. This weekend I took part in two workshops run by Rosie, one of the Girlguiding CHQ marketing interns and in response to request am writing up the key points here for people who haven't had access to this training locally to them.
If we start by thinking about Girlguiding themselves, they have huge reach - their followers and likers on Facebook and twitter amount to about 29,000 - stats which are increasing by 3 - 4,000 per quarter. Whether we're using those mediums for local, regional or national communications - that's a huge amount of people reading and responding to what Girlguiding have to say. You might think "but I only have 30 girls in my unit. Who would listen to me?" But, if your follwers retweet or share what you're talking about then your reach extends and extends. And the Girlguiding accounts follow units, districts, divisions and Counties and will retweet/ share your news, thoughts and views.
There are things we do need to bear in mind - Child safety, especially on facebook. Closed groups for Senior section, with carefully chosen securities and permissions for photos work best. But Guide, Brownie or Rainbow units could have a Unit page. With Twitter your account is open - your feed needs to be brief but relatively frequent and you do need to engage - neither Twitter nor facebook work as social media tools if you're just shouting into an empty room - but if you talk to people, linking them into your conversations, retweeting others' you start to find your place in those communitiies.
Some final hints and tips for new tweeters/ facebookers
- Tweet/ Share good news and information
- Use a strong profile picture
- When tweeting or updating your status use a call to action - a question for your followers to answer
- Include links and pictures (bear in mind photo permissions) where relevant
- Don't be afraid to ask people to share your message - Twitter shorthand for this is 'Please RT'
- Tweet others as you would like to be tweeted ;-) - share their news, respond positively, link up
Next time a write up of the intermediate session
Oh and have some cake