Social media is one of the best tools that an elected official or candidate. It is especially helpful for sharing and informing about events and time-sensitive items. You can let people know when events are happening, a special day or holiday in your community, and weather alerts. It is very handy.
However, if you are using Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, they do not always show your posts when your post them. Sometimes, they don’t get seen at all!!
To ease confusion, one thing I learned as Mayor was to add a date to any post or email subject line I sent so that no matter when someone sees your post or email, they know if it is current or not.
Time-sensitive social media post best practices
I often use ‘Today,’ ‘Tomorrow,’ or ‘Tonight’ in posts and subject lines for emails. However, if your recipient doesn’t check email until the next day or Facebook shows them a post the follow week, your information can be more confusing than helpful.
Here is the little trick I use to avoid confusion about time-sensitive posts.
Every time I post to social media or write an email headline about when something it happening, I always add the date in parenthesis after using the time-sensitive noun. For example:
- Looking forward to seeing you tonight (3/16) at the VFW steak fry between 4:30 and 9!
- Severe Thunderstorm Warning today (9/1) until 3 pm!!!
Here is what it looks like in a real post.
Here’s what you don’t want to do
As you can see in the post below, it is tough at first glance to know exactly when it is ‘tonight’. My timeline showed this post about 24 hours after it was originally posted.
When I saw the post, it was a beautiful, sunny day and I didn’t understand why our Parks and Recreation Dept still had the fields closed. I even went so far as to check the weather before I realized it was from the previous day.
See how confusing that is?! But you see it all over the place now that you are looking.
What do you think?
Is this a practice you can get on board with? Have any other tips for eliminating confusion when posting?
Use the comment section below to share your thoughts.