These best practices are intended to help steer you through the process of creating and maintaining a successful and engaging social media channel.
Is social media right for your needs?
While creating a social media account may seem like a great idea at first, consider the following and ask yourself:
- Can I fully commit to curating enough content to post at least 1-2 times a week? Am I in this for the long-run or a quick promotion such as a campaign?
- Who is our target audience?
- What is the main goal of creating this page?
We all see the impact social media has in the digital world. It’s a great asset to use, but to be successful it often takes strategic content planning and time to build a following. If you’re unsure of your ability to commit to this, try reaching out to related HSC schools, departments, organizations or programs with established social media accounts to promote your content!
Assign a social media manager or small team
It’s recommended to have at least 2 people manage the same social media accounts and only share the account’s passwords between these team members. This is to ensure that in the event of sickness, travel, or emergencies, there is someone to step in and keep your account secure.
You and your team are solely responsible for all content you share, monitoring comments, responding to incoming messages and obtaining analytics. Social media is always active, which means monitoring your channels may be required off-hours.
Maintaining your accounts
Branding Do’s and Don’ts
- Do follow the Institutional Brand and Identity Policy! All HSC-affiliates including divisions, schools, departments, units, auxiliaries and individuals who are communicating on behalf of the institution must follow these policies as required by the UNT System Board of Regent’s Rules.
- Do protect the HSC institutional voice by remaining professional in tone and in good taste with the content you post.
- Don’t use a logo that is not the official HSC logo or Photoshop the official logo in any way. Please email our team to receive the correct logos that have been specifically formatted for social media.
Content Do’s and Don'ts
- Do post content regularly – aim for at least 1-2 times a week. Accounts that remain inactive for 1 month will result in being removed from the social media directory.
- Do use HSC’s hashtags and geotags to make sure your content is seen! Here some common hashtags we use: #HSCProud, #ServeOthersFirst and #unthsc
- Do increase the chances of your posts being seen by monitoring what days and times your audience responds the most. You can find this information on the ‘Insights’ page of each social media platform.
- Do think before you post! Double check your post for any spelling mistakes or errors before posting.
- Don’t automatically post your Twitter feed to your Facebook page.
Engagement Do’s and Don’ts
- Do respond to comments and the direct messages in your inbox within a timely manner. Comments are subject to each social media platform’s own community guidelines, which the HSC Digital Content team has no control over.
- Don’t allow followers to post personal attacks, spam, racist comments, self-serving content and inappropriate language. If they do, you should remove the post. Repeat offenders should be banned if their posts become egregious.
Photography Do’s and Don’ts
- Do aim on posting high-quality images. Anyone can take a good photo! If you’re looking for guidance, check out these tips!
- Do always get permission from individuals or groups you are taking images or video of prior to posting it online. Have them fill out our quick photo release form as proof of consent. For more “in the moment” content such as Instagram Stories, get their verbal permission.
- Don’t post or tag a photo of a minor unless he or she has a signed photo release form on file that allows HSC to use his or her photo for promotional purposes.
In the event of a crisis, it is crucial to have a clear and concise messaging to represent our One University. HSC social media managers are strongly encouraged to share official, unaltered HSC emergency messages, with the exception of closures or specific department information.
It is recommended to consider the context to specific subjects or content being shared to analyze if sharing something would seem insensitive or inappropriate. This is especially important for any posts scheduled in advance.
Follow compliance regulations
To ensure the protection and confidentiality of an individual’s personal and health information, social media accounts and their account holders are required to follow all HIPPA, FERPA and Copyright policies and laws.