F.Y.I.

Hootsuite launches resources to help the public sector connect with communities during COVID-19

Hootsuite has launched a collection of resources designed for governments and not-for-profit organisations to improve their use of social media to connect to communities during the COVID-19 crisis.

The announcement:

Hootsuite has today released a full suite of resources to help government organisations and large enterprises foster community connections through social media, and achieve greater cut-through in the disruptive COVID-19 period.

As organisations, from enterprise to government, continue to manage the extensive impact of COVID-19, social media is becoming an ever-imperative form of communication, with January’s Digital 2020 Report finding 96% of Australian internet users accessed social media within the last month and each user having an average of 6.7 accounts. Social media, as a communications channel, enhances the ability for governments to quickly disseminate information and provides a relevant public forum for interactions with government agencies, politicians or civic officials. According to Hootsuite, social media has the power to provide significantly more benefits beyond information sharing, and is a crucial tool for crisis communication, increasing citizen engagement, building public trust, dispelling myths, testing messaging and improving workforce or financial efficiencies.

“The utilisation of social media is a fundamental tool for governments and the public sector to better engage with citizens and foster greater community connections. Never before have these connections been more important, as governments and citizens continue to rely on each other to create safety, and build a productive future beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. Social media, due to its real-time and short-form nature, is an incredibly effective channel for staying connected, increasing trust, enabling operational continuity and, when harnessed correctly, building long-lasting connections,” Heather Cook, Managing Director – ANZ, Hootsuite, explained.

The City of Adelaide is an organisation already leveraging the capabilities of Hootsuite’s platform for better citizen engagement. As the council representing Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, its elected officials are responsible for representing the interests of their 25,000 residents, 315,000 daily users and the numerous organisations based in their locality. With their long-term aim of being recognised as the world’s most liveable city, endeavouring to create a vibrant city experience for residents and visitors, the City of Adelaide recognises its responsibilities extend beyond roads, rates and rubbish to stimulating business innovation, investment and serving the interests of residents.

With Hootsuite, the City of Adelaide has been able to develop a strong social media presence and deliver quality content by leveraging the Hootsuite platform to centralise the management of their social media, optimise community management and maximise efficiency within their social media team, according to Clayton Wehner, Manager – Marketing Strategy & Innovation, City of Adelaide. Now, with the disruptive impact of COVID-19, the importance of having a strong media presence has never been more important.

“At the City of Adelaide, our priority is providing innovative, customer-centric service delivery. We adopted the Hootsuite platform to centralise planning and approval processes, decentralise content development, increase governance and holistic situational awareness and share more high-value social content. Leveraging Hootsuite has allowed us to achieve these goals while improving our social monitoring, automation and integrated live support. We have already achieved 16 percent growth in our Facebook fans, centralised over 20 social media properties onto a single platform and scaled our number of contributors from 2 to 15. We have now optimised social content service delivery for our stakeholders and citizens, which has been crucial to our ability to connect and communicate effectively,” Wehner shared. The City of Adelaide’s preemptive adoption of digital and social guardrails, as a foundation for service delivery, is now paying dividends in mitigating against the significant disruption caused by recent events.

In late March, Hootsuite announced that all non-profit organisations, including government bodies and small businesses most impacted by the COVID-19 crisis, would be provided with free access to the Hootsuite Professional Plan through 1 July 2020. This complimentary offering from Hootsuite allows organisations to increase engagement with their audiences, create content efficiently, manage crisis communications, build trust and access a library of social media training courses free of charge.

To provide further support for public sector organisations and large enterprises interested in improving their social media management, tomorrow at 10.00am AEST Hootsuite will be holding a webinar titled ‘How Governments are Managing COVID-19 on Social’. This insights sharing session will focus on how to build new bridges between government and citizens, with these groups relying on one another to respond to COVID-19, by providing examples of exemplary crisis management and recommendations for implementation within existing communications plans. The webinar is designed to help the many government agencies or large enterprises that are relying on social media for citizen communications and dispelling myths, along with their counterparts throughout the world, to ensure the health of citizens.

Key speakers of the webinar, which will feature a live Q&A session, include:

  • (Host) Morgan Zerr, Senior Business Value Analyst at Hootsuite
  • Nick Sinai, Venture Partner at Insight Partners and former U.S. Deputy Chief Technology Officer
  • Jeanette Falvey, Chief Digital Officer at City of Boston
  • Danielle Brigida, Deputy Director of Digital Strategy at Department of the Interior
  • Yael Bar-Tur, Director of Social Media at the New York City Police Department (NYPD)

“At Hootsuite, our first thought is with those directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. We also stand alongside those on the frontlines seeking to safeguard the wellbeing of the Australian and international community. We are highly concerned about the profound impact on small business owners and non-profit organisations throughout the world. In Australia, these groups are the engine drivers of our economy, and a fundamental fabric of our society; whilst for governments their responsibility to support citizens has never been greater. We hope our complimentary resources – from free access to the Hootsuite Professional Plan and training courses, insights from our latest case study on the City of Adelaide and those shared during tomorrow’s webinar – support business, government and not-for-profit organisations, to strengthen their community connections through social media. We are always here for any organisations that would like to discuss how they can create connections and communicate effectively on social media.” Cook said.

Hootsuite will continue to launch a series of free online ‘social first’ workshops over the next few months, to support organisations in the government, healthcare, financial services and higher education sectors, who have been most impacted and are continuing to manage complex communications issues.

To access Hootsuite’s COVID-19 Professional Plan offer, click here.

To attend the ‘How Governments are Managing COVID-19 on Social’ webinar, click here.

To find out more about how the City of Adelaide has leveraged the Hootsuite platform to create a stronger social media presence, click here.

Source: Adhesive PR media release

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