Social Media Best Practices Highlights

Based on the research findings in the above slides, the social media landscape continues to change. Here are some of the key findings:

1. From a sheer numbers point of view, Facebook and Instagram have the lion’s share of traffic across age groups, however the time spent on these platforms varies by age group. These are necessary social platforms in our social media mix.

2. There are social platforms which attract different age groups more than others. As a result, a strategy that targets reaching young adults can be served by the growing populatity of platforms such as Instagram and Tik Tok.

3. The growing popularity of video makes it a critical component in reaching all age groups.  Shorter videos, less than two minutes, are the trend.

4. Live streaming is part of the extraordinary rise of video in social media and is here to stay as more and more content creators and advertisors use live streaming.

5. A content calendar is a recommended tool for social media planning and keeping everyone on the same page with regards to upcoming events and traditional holidays and anniversaries.

6. Consistency in posting frequency is crucial in generating engagement and attracting more followers to your cause.

7. On brand messaging helps reinforce our cause. This should be incorporated into what we post and how we respond to comments. (see Wendy’s example).

8. Be selective and allocate your resources to be as effective as possible – scale your social media outreach based on your ability to maintain and support it consitently. If that means owning one platform do that rather than be spread out in a haphazard approach across multiple channels.

Facebook SFA Post Samples

What is the difference between reach and engagementReach is best described as the number of unique viewers who see your content, while engagement is those who interact with your content. In other words, engagement is things such as likes, comments, share etc.

St Francis posts fall into one of the following catefories: Live streams (ie Mass, Evening Prayer), reflections (ie Fr. Jim),  Event notices (using stills or video), Evangelization (Fr. Jim’s quote), Special announcements (Fr. Jim’s 22yrs celebration,  Covid protocol change to alow 600 people to attend Mass, Down phone system, etc.)

The post featuring Jeremy Roca’s video encouraging participation in KBL generated lots of shares. Although there were no comments on the post and only 10 likes, it reached over 3000 people.  The video was submitted by Jeremy and a bit of editing was done to show the KBL graphic – overall it was a great selfie video which featured someone other than a staff member.

This post featuring Fr. Jim’s 22nd anniversary of his ordination is a great example of a high performing post. It is a story told in picture format with a focus on Fr. Jim’s journey. It received over 300 likes, 71 comments, 2 shares and reached close to 3000 people. It is not overly wordy and the images provide a good glimpse into the life of Fr. Jim. 

Fr. Jim’s daily reflections generate a consistent reach anywhere from 800 – 1200 people. He is well known, liked, and has a following among parishioners. One way to leverage his daily reflection is to insert a call to action every once in a while, where appropriate.

Posts can also be good vehicles for evangelization.  Fr. Jim’s daily reflection evangelize via video. In this particular case, a single quote is used to share an evangelization message. It is a snippet which can help reinforce our position as a Roman Catholic church of the Diocese of Raleigh.

Some posts are simply important information that needs to be communicated quickly to our parishioners. This type of announcement is usually reinforced in pre-Mass announcements and the bulletin. 

Much of our social media posts have to do with event announcements. These posts do not generate the kind of engagement and response that picture stories or video generate, it is important information nonetheless. The question becomes, how can we create posts for event announcements utilizing a story telling format or video to a generate greater response?

Implementing Best Social Media Practices Across St. Francis

1. Develop a content strategy:  Utilize Facebook and Instagram for general parish social media engagement and utilize TikTok to reach youth and young adults.

2. Develop a content calendar:  Synchronize content calendar with parish-wide communications.

3. Create segmented content to take advantage of audience’s preferences across Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok

4. Use vertical video format on Instagram and TikTok

5. Use special effects on TikTok videos

5. Use hashtags with posts

6. Utilize metrics mechanism within the platforms to track post performance

7. Graphic ad guidelines

  • All graphics regardless of where they appear need to have the shortest web link possible. If that means a bit.ly link, that’s OK.
  • All graphics should include contact information.
  • Critical info such as due by, date of event, call to action must appear if there is one. Regardless of where the graphic will appear
  • All graphics need to be square format 1025×1025 pixels saved as .jpg or .png
  • Refrain from editorial copy in a graphic ad and let folks go the link indicated for more info.

If the graphic needs updating because it changes from a “Save the Date” message to a “Registration” message that’s fine.

TikTok -Reaching Youth/Young Adults

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