Enhancing Your Council’s Social Media Presence
For today’s college students, using social media seems to be second nature. As millennials, college Knights grew up posting to Facebook, sending tweets and snapchats, and watching videos on YouTube and Vine. However, it may not always be obvious how to transfer the experience of keeping up with friends and family on social media networks to sustaining an engaging online presence for your college council. To clarify the process, we’ve put together these tips to help your council optimize its social media presence.
Assign a Council Social Media Administrator
It is important to give one council member the task of maintaining your council’s social media page(s). Assigning one person to be the administrator of social media accounts will allow your council to focus on programs and activities while having peace of mind that one of your own is dedicated to the constant work of fostering your council’s online presence. Either your chancellor, whose duty is to strengthen members’ interest in council activities, or your recorder, who is tasked with keeping accounts of your council’s history, should take on the role of admin on all council social media accounts. Your chancellor or recorder should share all login credentials with your grand knight, who should be granted admin status to all social media accounts and share some of the maintenance responsibilities.
Don’t Spread Yourself too Thin
One of the most common mistakes organizations make online is trying to engage on too many platforms. Although this may be a good idea in theory, it spreads your resources thin and makes it difficult to keep up with different audiences on each platform. Instead, establish a robust presence on one or two social platforms. You can always build your presence as your reach grows. Active college councils should, at the very least, have a well-maintained public Facebook page. Facebook is a great place to start your council’s social media presence because of its status as the largest social media platform and its relative ease of use. Your council only needs to update the page a few times a week to be effective. If your council chooses to expand its social media presence, Twitter and Instagram are two platforms that can be easily used in conjunction with Facebook. The longevity, continued relevance and large user base of these platforms has proven them to be more than just social media fads.
Follow the “Rule of Thirds”
It may seem difficult to know exactly what content to post on your social media platforms. The best strategy to follow is the Rule of Thirds: one third of your posts should be related to the programs and initiatives of the Knights of Columbus (both those of the Supreme Council and your college council), one third of your posts should relate to your campus and local community, and the final third of your content should contain information related to the Catholic Church. The Rule of Thirds will create a balanced social media presence, expand your reach and impact with topics of interest to those outside your college council as well as within it, and foster a positive image of your council and the Order.
Perhaps the most important strategy to remember when posting content to your council’s social media accounts is to stay positive. Posts should promote the charitable works, programs and initiatives of your council and the Order, rather than criticize or reprove another campus group, political idea or public figure. Although it may be defending the Church’s teachings and the beliefs of the Knights of Columbus to do so, negative content aimed at a group, idea or figure on social media platforms only discredits the good works of the Knights of Columbus, and it is never the behavior of a Catholic gentleman. Instead, posting content that supports the charitable works of the Knights of Columbus and the Catholic faith will allow your council to promote the Church’s teachings and the initiatives of the Knights of Columbus while remaining engaging. Posting information about your council’s events and sharing resources for spiritual development will encourage your audience to become involved with the Knights of Columbus and grow in their faith, rather than painting the council as a divisive and petty campus group.
Share Content from Trusted Sources
One of the easiest ways to enhance your council’s presence on social media is to share content from
official Knights of Columbus pages and organizations that are reputable and established. The wider the selection of trusted Catholic sites you share from, the wider your online audience becomes.