Social Media General Guidelines

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Social Media General Guidelines

Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. With so many social media channels available, CARE has crafted this guide to help you make the most of your postings.

We want to be sure you’re sharing CARE’s information in the most engaging and effective way possible. If you have questions, be sure to reach out to your CARE Regional Advocacy Coordinator.

Photo, video or status updates should:

  • Tell an emotional and personal story in less than 200 words. Videos, ideally, should be between 15 seconds and 2 minutes (though interviews can be longer).
  • Offer an opportunity for the audience to learn more by providing a link, photo or video that provides greater context. Social media updates are supposed to be short- the idea is to provide a “teaser” to convince your audience to learn more. Be sure to provide an opportunity for them to do so.
  • Showcase an intimate component of our work. If someone who didn’t know much about CARE was at your side, what would surprise or impress them? Often it’s the small details that make people feel the most connected – not the numbers and big picture summaries.
  • Rather than a photo of just a person or a place, a photo should pique someone’s interest and make them ask, “What is going on and why should I care?” Photos or videos of people in action, unusual looking objects or surprising scenes often accomplish this most successfully.
  • Make sure to tie your story back to CARE. If it represents a component of one of our programs, explain the goals of the program. If it represents a larger issue, explain what CARE is doing to help.
  • When using social media as an individual, share your impressions. Use the word “I” – talk about what you think about the image and scenario you’re presenting.
  • Direct quotes from staff are a great way to connect people to the work CARE’s doing.
  • Be easy to understand. Remember, social media followers are not your colleagues. They will not understand the complicated aspects of CARE’s work, so keep it simple. A good test is to ask if your teenage self would understand what you’re writing. If not, start again.
  • Grab attention right away. On social media, you’re competing with tens of thousands of other people and organizations. Even if your photo has a cool story to tell, if it isn’t attention-grabbing, people won’t click to learn more.

FREE ONLINE SOCIAL MEDIA TOOLS

Mashable Twitter guide

  • If you would like to go more in depth about Twitter, Mashable has a great guide to utilize.

Hootsuite.com or Tweetdeck.com

  • These applications allow you to send out scheduled posts, shrink long links, and add photos all in one place.

Bit.ly

  • This is a website that allows you to shorten long links (if you don’t want to use Hootsuite). Since Tweets are limited to 140 characters, some links are very long and go over the limit. Copy and paste those links into your post.
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