Museums Online

A blog to go with a series of workshops for museums on social media

Social media strategy October 23, 2009

Filed under: social media strategy — museumsonline @ 1:55 pm

We spent a bit of time at yesterday’s workshop discussing social media strategy. There are some useful articles and great short videos on how to develop strategy listed on this blog (see the page workshop links), as well as material in the workshop presentation.

It can be useful to document your strategy – even briefly – so that you can share it with your project sponsors, stakeholders or your parent organisation. Here’s a simple structure for such a document that might help you out here – it’ll get you thinking about your priorities and what you can realistically tackle given your resources.

  1. Vision for your organisation
  2. Audience(s) for your servies
  3. Objectives of your marketing strategy (eg increase visits from families, build international audience, attract new volunteers etc)
  4. Sections outlining your print, online and evironmental activities.
  5. Sign off by your project sponsor and, if required, other stakeholders
  6. Related organisational policies and strategies (eg organisation’s social media policy, branding guidelines, strategic plan etc).

In the ‘online activities’ section, list each activity you plan to undertake and describe:

What you’ll do: the purpose (eg revealing the behind-the-scenes operations of the museum, distributing events information etc), the content involved (events information, digitised images of objects from the collection), the tool you’ll use (WordPress, Twitter, Facebook etc).

Relationship with/implications for your main website: eg continuity with branding, sign up to newsletter or link to twitter needed on home page.

Marketing objective(s) that the activity supports

Success metrics: how you will measure the outcomes of the activity (eg number of Facebook fans, visitors to your blog, number of user contributions etc).

Resource required: who will do the work and how much time it will take, and the frequency of activity (eg fortnightly blog post).

Risks and mitigation: eg will moderation be required? will copyright constrain you?

The last section – related organisational policies and strategies – mentions social media policy. Here’s a useful link to a blog post by Janet Fouts on corporate social media policy, with some examples. As she says, ‘a corporate policy lets [staff] know what they need to know to communicate the company message effectively, and what they should and should not do.’

As well as thinking about what you’re going to say via social media channels, it’s important to think about how you’re going to respond to what others are saying about you. Here’s the US Air Force’s rules of engagement for blogging. It’s pretty thorough – the main point for me is that your response should vary in tone and content depending on what’s been posted about.

If anyone has any models out there to share for developing social media strategy, please feel free to contribute and discuss!