Managing Twitter activity for a Federal agency is fast-paced and challenging. There’s a growing set of research, strategies, and tools to help you be effective in this rapidly changing Twitter environment. The IBM Center for the Business of Government released a new study this week that outlines the benefits – and risks – of hosting a Twitter feed, as well as specific, practical strategies. The study found:
About 700 different departments, agencies, initiatives, and teams within the U.S. federal government have set up a total of 1,015 Twitter accounts
Working the Network: A Manager’s Guide for Using Twitter in Government is based on insights gleaned from interviews with federal agency social media directors. In particular, the report focuses on four successful Twitter tactics and strategies used by agencies:
- Pushing out information
- Pulling-in information
- Networking with and engaging the public in dialogue
- Providing customer service
The guide will benefit both novices and the more advanced Twitter user. If you haven’t yet established a Twitter account, you’ll learn the key steps to get up and running. If you’re a more experienced user, you’ll learn how to optimize your current accounts and some innovative approaches from your peers.
The report also highlights the importance of using analytics to make a strong business case for using this type of citizen engagement, and to increase the scope of your agency’s Twitter network.
The guide highlights many examples of best practices used by federal agencies including:
- State Department produces Twitter feeds in 10 languages including Turkish, Urdu, Chinese Farsi, Arabic, Spanish, and French
- GSA has a developed a Social Media registry tool to ensure credibility of government Twitter accounts, and
- CDC is using Twitter (@CDCemergency) to alert the general public about national health threats
Tell us how your agency is using Twitter and where you think it’s headed.