As soon as your Community Meeting social media platforms are up and running, you should begin posting and sharing everything that you can or have the time to, online.
People from across your Community will be interested in what you are doing from the moment that you begin work.
However, the key to success is what you then do to keep those same People engaged and interested, and then thinking about what more they could and then want to do, to help you.
What kind of things you should post:
People you don’t know will respond very well when they feel like you are talking to them, rather than at them.
A really helpful way to approach writing anything to post on social media and online, is to treat it like you are having a normal chat or conversation with someone that you already know – just without anything that would be too familiar or personal. (For instance, leave out bad language, irony, sarcasm or anything that people who aren’t used to the way you speak might not ‘get’ or understand)
You don’t need to write loads to engage People either. Short and punchy lines or just a couple of paragraphs are more than enough, IF there is a message worth sharing included.
Use your Community Meeting social media platforms to post:
- News: When you’ve launched, when you have set up something like a fundraiser for People to use, when you’ve made contact with another Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE group, when a member of the community volunteers and is taking on a specific responsibility or role AND when Community Meetings have been arranged.
- Questions: You should ask People what they think about things you are doing and speak as if you are already addressing the whole community – no matter how many People are already involved. Remember that the Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE pathway to creating functioning Community Meetings is all about engaging and listening to everyone who wants to speak and participate across the local Community – so give them that chance from day 1!
- Updates: Tell everyone what you and those working with you have achieved. For instance, if you have made a commitment to visit a certain number of houses to talk to local People by a certain date, tell everyone how you are getting on. Or share other updates about how other Community Meetings are getting on.
The kind of things you shouldn’t post:
Remember that your Community Meeting and everything you create, set up and achieve belongs to the Community from the moment you begin.
It’s therefore very important not to blur the lines and make anything you post about you, what you are doing when you are not working on Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE, or anything personal to you, such as talking about the things that you like.
DON’T use your Community Meeting social media platforms to post:
- Anything Personal: DON’T use the platforms you have set up for your Community Meeting to post ANYTHING that is about you or anyone else personally.
- Anything about Public Policy or Politics: The whole point of Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE is the creation of the circumstances where we are able to Vote for People to represent us all as Public Representatives who have been chosen by the Community and whose integrity in fulfilling their responsibilities is something we can trust. Policy itself is the next issue, once we have Politicians running government that we can trust. So, if the focus shifts away from listening and the commitment to the order that these steps have to come, your only success by making policy statement or making an endorsement of a policy of any kind, will only be to divide People at precisely the wrong time.
Rules for using social media as a successful Community building tool:
Here are some general rules that will help you to build a good reputation for your Community Meeting, to stay happy and to build good relationships across your social media platforms, with anyone worth building them with online:
- ALWAYS approach social media like it’s a one-to-one conversation with someone you already know.
- Don’t do or say anything to anyone online, that you wouldn’t be happy to do or say directly to their face, in real life.
- NEVER MAKE IT PERSONAL. Even the People on the internet who are rude are reflecting only how they feel about their own life and the world. ITS NEVER ABOUT YOU – but it soon will be, IF you are the one to initiate any kind of abuse or attack!
- If you are unsure of whether you should post whatever you’ve written, DON’T POST IT!
- Don’t present opinions and views as fact to anyone. It’s possible to get into legal trouble if you do, and you never know who will see what you have written or published, and People will be very quick to call you out!
- Don’t lie or make things up – especially if you have received a comment or read something that makes you uncomfortable.
- Don’t post when you are feeling emotional or are under the influence of drink or drugs.
- Always answer polite and constructive questions. There will be more People who will be genuinely interested in what you are saying or doing than there will be those who only have bad things to say about anything or anyone.
- NEVER make promises that you have no way of knowing that you can keep.
- If you are asked a question and don’t know the answer, be honest. Don’t even attempt blag your way out. Find a way to engage directly if you can and let them know that you will find the answer and get back to them.
- Ignore anyone who only has negative things to say.
- DO NOT use the number of likes, shares, followers or any other kind of statistic that’s openly available as a way to tell you how successful your efforts have been. Alone, they NEVER accurately correlate with what People are really thinking. The reality is that if you only ever succeed in openly engaging one person, that one person could be connected and then tell your story to the whole world!
- Don’t share links to anyone or anything that you don’t trust or are not fully aware of and know to be relevant and helpful to Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE.
- REMEMBER: Unless you have done something you shouldn’t have, People only attack and criticise the work and efforts of others online, when they have nothing useful or of benefit to anyone else to say. Keep doing the right thing by everyone, and you will soon be shocked by who this cap actually fits!
- Don’t publish any picture of anyone who can be identified from that picture, unless you have their permission to do so. You should get that permission in writing wherever you can.
- Don’t publish information that will identify People directly, unless it relates to material that already exists in the public realm – In which case, publish the link, so readers can see what you are referencing or referring to.
- Don’t publish anything on your Community Meeting platforms that promote the views of any organisation or any individual in any way, other than your Community Meeting, itself.
Things to be aware of:
Remember that you need to keep the AIM, METHOD and PROCESS of Officially NONE OF THE ABOVE in your mind at all times.
ALWAYS CHECK THAT EVERYTHING YOU HAVE POSTED THEN POSTS AS IT SHOULD, WHERE ITS SUPPOSED TO, AND THAT ITS POSTED ON TIME!
You can always get in touch if you need any suggestions or pointers: firstname.lastname@example.org
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