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Ten Tips For Increasing Law Enforcement Social Media Engagement

Ten Tips For Increasing Law Enforcement Social Media Engagement

Here are the show notes for Episode 5 - If you haven't already done so, listen to this episode right here!

Tip #1 - Research Your Mentors

Find those agencies who replicate the online presence you would like to have. Don’t focus necessarily on their numbers, but rather the content they are publishing. See what it is that they are using to captivate people’s attention. You’ll also want to look at their engagement with the community. What type of discussions are they holding with their squad? How do they respond to both the positives and the negatives? 

Tip #2 - Add Your Facebook Page Info Everywhere

Have your social media page addresses added to your business cards, brochures, or any paperwork you distribute to the public. This is “free” advertising, in the fact you are already paying to have the items produced. 

Tip #3 - Stay Around For 20 Minutes

After you publish content, hang out for about 20 minutes afterward. Wait for someone to post a reply to your content, and respond back to them. This will show people you care and that you want to not only publish content, but discuss important news, information and issues with your community.

Tip #4 - Engage As Your Page

Click on the arrow down icon on the upper right of your Facebook page. A dropdown menu will appear with the words, “Use Facebook as:” and you will see your fan page or pages, if you have more than one. Click on your department’s page and you will see your department’s name appear in the top blue Facebook navigation bar. Now you can be good stewards to business’ in your community and comment, like and share content on behalf of your police department.

Tip #5 - Get To Know The Audience

Go into your Facebook Insights page and click on the “People” tab. Take a look at who your fans are, as far as gender, age and location are concerned. For example, I know that 62% of my department’s fans are women, and 38% of them are men. I also know that the main age group is between 25 and 34 years of age. In knowing this information, I can use Tip #6 to our advantage.

Tip#6 - Appeal To Your Audience

With the above information, I’m able to take a quick look at some scientific data available online and quickly come to this conclusion: Their generation were taught in school how to use computers, and they have always had computers around their place of employment. They watch television for relaxation They have experienced marriage and divorce and parenthood, with many of the lower age group choosing to hold off on making such commitments. However, they are living with their partners - Over 2/3 of them They’re less likely to pay attention to smaller stories or newspapers. They prefer to get their news from the internet, more specifically social media They are not into saving, but rather, they prefer to buy “toys” for themselves This means, I would want to publish content about technology safety and security, dating safety, workplace and online stalking, shopping safety, identity theft / credit card theft, landlord / tenant rights and issues, online dating and shopping cites, like Craigslist and eHarmony, and highlight local events and news they might have missed by not subscribing to a newspaper. This also means that I have to understand how they communicate, such as the type of words or lingo they use to describe things.

Click here to view the differences in generations

Tip #7 - Upload Native Video

We’ve all seen how video is taking Facebook by storm right now. In fact, take a look at your own Facebook timeline and you’ll see video after video. This is because Facebook is pushing their video feature hard to their users. One of the great parts about Facebook video is the fact it plays directly in Facebook. With videos hosted on other platforms, the most you can do is embed a link in a post and redirect users to that other platform to watch your video. Keeping your squad members on one platform will surely make them happy and increase your engagement.

Tip #8 - It’s Not All About You

Although a department’s Facebook page exists to share news and information about or from the department, caution should be taken to prevent the “it’s all about me” syndrome. This is your opportunity to help our profession out as a whole, by sharing great stories, safety tips, photos and videos from other law enforcement sources. For example, some people may not know what the song taps signifies or why it is played at law enforcement and military funerals. Or, why do police officers place a black band over their badge when an officer dies? These are great examples of content which you can place on your pages, to stir engagement.

Tip #9 - Create Facebook Group Pages

Here’s the beauty of Facebook Group Pages; When a person is member of a group page, they receive a notification when there’s something new that has been posted to the page. Unlike your department’s Facebook page, where your posts may or may not show up in your fans’ timelines, each member of a group page will be notified in their notifications section. Group Pages can be made for neighborhood watch groups, patrol areas or beats, specific crime interests, department volunteer and intern groups, etc.

Tip #10 - My Favorite: Content

If everyone was sitting by their computer, logged into Facebook, and more specifically, on your Facebook page, at the moment you published some content, then I would say publishing content only once would be sufficient and effective. The reality is that doesn’t happen. That means you need to push content so as to elevate your Facebook ranking. The more content you push, the more engagement you enjoy, the more you show up in people’s timelines!


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