TwitterChat on volunteers during disasters today at 1300EST #Prep2Serve #NatlPrep #PrepareAthon

As part of 2016 National Preparedness Month – numerous preparedness peeps will be participating in today’s TwitterChat.

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Gather tips and specific messaging that could work for your community on preparedness. Talk about different groups who are active within their community before, during, and after a disaster.

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RH-CERT in action!

To keep the convo going, consider using the #Prep2Serve today.

See you at 1300EST!

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“Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today.”

@rusnivek

Snapping preparedness messaging aka SnapSleet-Safety-PIO-SM-16-001

Using SnapChat for preparedness isn’t as easy as one would think.
So here is yesterday’s snap in sleet.

Few items that I have to ponder for next time:

1. Portrait vs landscape. Since MOST of our recipients will be viewing this on a mobile platform (vertical), we should shoot the videos in portrait mode. That makes “selfie” solo production a bit more difficult. Hint: You might want to stop making fun of that selfie-stick now and get one.

2. Outside conditions (esp in our line of work) necessitates an external lav mic. I have one and I totally forgot to use it.

3. Framing needs to be assessed because the shot needs to include room for text.

4. Remembering which side is up during landscape video shooting is important. (I purposely did it so I can see if viewers rewatched the video to get the full effect). But SnapChat’s analytics don’t show amounts on segments – it only shows who has initially watched.

5. My shot list should have included various parts of the vehicle. Similar to a news package, varied backgrounds would likely keep audiences more engaged and keep their interest.

6. Filming in sleet isn’t fun. 

7. Clean your lens. A lot.

8. Turn off your engine. Ambient noise will affect your sound (esp being so close). 

9. I should have used some sort of emoticons to appeal more to a younger demographic/audience.

10. Saving the snap to YouTube (in its entirety) so that it can be used for other preparedness efforts (including separated sections).

I know the 10 items are detailed and nerdy, but as PIO or PAO or Communications Pros, I feel we should regularly share our lessons learned with others so we can all improve our tactics and deliveries.

Have a safe weekend peeps.

@rusnivek

No complaining-offer solutions-Safety-PIO-SM-14-008

14-008: No complaining – offer solutions
Agency: Long Beach Fire Topic(s):         Public Perception and Solutions
Date: Fall 2014 Platform:        Twitter

Complaining or venting on social media is fairly common. However, as an official agency, public displays of affliction does not portray the best image. Long Beach Fire expressed some displeasure on Twitter when discussing the their pilot program.

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After reading this tweet, the public’s perception is that if 9-1-1 is called, no ambulances will respond. This is irresponsible and wrong. (Almost all emergency services have mutual aid agreements or memorandum of understandings in place.)

 

Positioning your agency as a fear mongerer or the Harbinger of Evil will only further distance yourself from people who would be willing to help your cause. Inform them of dangers, but more importantly, engage them publically on social.

 

If there is internal displeasure with the new staffing models, be proactive and offer transparent solutions in the tweet. Cite websites that provide industry information. Publically share statistical data that supports changes with current programs. These online tactics will help direct and educate the general public on how to be better informed on other program and possible other options yet unexplored.

 

Additionally you can rally your constituents behind better initiatives by engaging with them publically via social media. It demonstrates that your department’s community involvement is a key part of a better solution.

As an official account, Twitter’s 140-character limit is really no place to moan/groan.

A more effective tweet could have read:

LBFD resources are maxed out. #Firefighters cannot provide adequate #Paramedic service to our communities. Help us find a solution <insert link here>

By phrasing it this way:

  1. You identify that resources are…well…maxed out.
  2. You use hashtags (#Firefighters and #Paramedic) that will help increase visibility in your tweets.
  3. You stress the importance of providing dedicated service to your community.
  4. You provide a traceable/measureable link that informs and helps bring visibility to this critical situation.

Time is valuable, so tweet good stuff.

@rusnivek

***To download this as a single-page printable format, click this file:

No complaining-offer solutions-Safety-PIO-SM-14-008

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14-003: Write for Different Platforms

Agency: Rocky Mountain Area IMT

Topic(s):         Social Media Platform Specific Messaging

Date: Summer 2014

Platform(s):    Press Release vs Twitter

Despite the message being essentially the same, every communications platform is different.

Speed is important, but correctly addressing your audience is critical in the world of public information.

On July 1, 2014, this tweet was posted on the Rocky Mountain Area Incident Management Team’s feed during the Eightmile Fire while deployed in Canon City, Colorado.

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“FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE” In all caps? All caps use on social media portrays yelling. Professionals should portray calm/control.

Twitter’s social media platform premise is a fast microblog service focusing on immediate information. This templated press release lingo (FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE) is not necessary. Every tweet is automatically time/date stamped including matching the recipients’ time zone. Do not waste your valuable 140 characters.

To me, this was a cut-and-paste action, or even worse yet, they just linked the agency’s Facebook and Twitter accounts together. No time was spent in addressing the various platforms used to push this valuable information. Remember, PIO actions on each platform in social media are not generic, they are specific. We talk about safety to kids differently than we inform adults on safety right? Likewise, we should address our audiences on social media accordingly to the platform they use.

A more effective tweet could have read:

“Updated information & stats on the #Eightmile Fire ongoing in Colorado can be found here fb.me/6KArLmgFr

By phrasing it this way:

  1. The tweet is shorter and more concise.
  2. Tweet identifies where the Rocky Mountain Area Incident Management Team is deployed.
  3. The main point of contact is identified on the Facebook link provided if more specific information is needed.
  4. Shorter messaging will allow your followers to retweet/repost and amplify your information.
  5. The use of hashtags will help audiences find information about the #Eightmile Fire and identify the Rocky Mountain Area Incident Management Team as a trusted source of information.

Know the differences in mainstream social media platforms because what will work on one old platform (press release) will NOT work on newer platforms (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc…) Know social media and use their amenities to your advantage.

 Time is valuable, so post good stuff.

@rusnivek

***To download this as a single-page printable format, click this: WriteForDifferentPlatforms-Safety-PIO-SM-14-003

 

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14-002: Precise Emergency Messaging
Agency: Indianapolis Motor Speedway Topic(s):         Emergency Messaging
Date: Summer 2014 Platform:        General

Mass notification and public messaging about dangerous inbound weather is the latest hot button topic in emergency management because no matter the location, everyone is susceptible. This year has been especially deadly with numerous tornadoes.

You can argue the use of automatic Emergency Alert System (EAS), Integrated Public Alert & Warning System’s (iPAWS) messages, and public address systems are good enough, but successful delivery still comes down to basic messaging.

On May 25, 2014, this message was put up on the main billboard on the field during the Indianapolis 500, which had 300,000+ fans during race time. The National Weather Service (NWS) declared a Tornado Warning before the start of the race.

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Race Fans? C’mon, you have a captive audience at the motor speedway. And you are addressing everyone there, not just race fans. Most likely, your audience is saying “Great, now what is a Tornado Warning?

Clear and concise messaging is incredibly important because seconds will matter in an immediate evacuation or leading others to shelter…especially with large, open, and unprotected public venues. This particular message was unclear, poorly worded, and definitely not concise.

A more effective messaging and follow-up post should have read:

DANGER! TORNADO WARNING NOW – SEEK SHELTER IMMEDIATELY!

Safe SHELTERS are located at AREA X and GATE X

By phrasing it this way:

1. Your message is short, sweet, and to the point.

2. Capital letters will grab the attention of your audience and convey urgency.

3. Have clearly identified safe locations IN CAPITAL LETTERS will assist those reading your message.

4. Shorter messaging could allow your followers to retweet/repost and amplify your emergency messaging.

5. It is still tornado season so make sure you are prepared by having pre-scripted messages on “what is a tornado warning” and messaging on how to “shelter-in-place”.

 

All concurrent Tweets, Facebook posts, Instagram posts, etc. should reflect this messaging. If a Tornado warning is issued, timing is of the essence. Do not be lax when it comes to emergency messaging because you don’t want to ruin the fun. For the sake of your constituents, it is better to error on the side of safety.

Time is valuable, so post good stuff.

@rusnivek

 

***To download this as a single-page printable format, click this: Safety-PIO-SM-14-001