Social Media Samples

How to Engage Your Community with Facebook and Twitter

Now that you’re mastering the key messages and you’ve established your campaign, you’re ready to talk about your issue with a wider audience. But, what’s the best way to get the word out to a lot of various influential audiences? Social media is a great place to start. With just a few clicks, you can access the right people, build awareness, and gain support to activate change in your community.

So, what are the most effective ways to use social media to support your cause? Let’s start by breaking down the Facebook and Twitter messages below.

Facebook

Facebook is a great way to reach more people, especially if you already have an established presence through your local organization’s page. You can use your existing account(s) to engage current advocates and recruit new ones, too. If you’ve established a campaign as an individual, consider launching a community Facebook page—“Concerned Citizens of [CITY] for Our Healthy Kids”—when your campaign takes off and community members show support.

Start with powerful examples and statistics about the issue that mean something to the people in your community. Include local or state statistics where possible.

  • Our kids drink more sugary drinks than milk. Learn how we can change that in [STATE] and then share this post with your Facebook friends. [LINK TO WEBSITE]

Be sure to include images, infographics, videos, and other content that readers can interact with beyond just text. Posts that have multimedia content along with the text perform exponentially higher in terms of engagement and click rates.

  • Our kids drink too much sugar! Help kids and their families rethink their drinks! This flyer will help. Print it and pin it up around your community! While you’re at it, snap a picture of yourself in action and come back here to share it. [LINK TO FLYER]

This is an example of a lobbying message. You can use lobbying messages when there is a bill related to your cause, like setting a tax on sugary beverages, or if it refers to a specific law or program in another state.

  • Our kids don’t need empty calories from sugary drinks. Urge your decision-makers to encourage our kids to make healthy drink choices in [STATE].  [LINK TO TAKE ACTION]
  • Millions of children and teens in America are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Sugary drinks are part of the problem. It’s time to take a stand: don’t sugarcoat our kids’ futures! [LINK TO INFOGRAPHIC ABOUT THE IMPACT OF SUGARY DRINKS ON KIDS’ DIETS]

Additional Notes for Facebook

  • Images and videos attract more attention on social media because they serve as a visual way to tell a story, and they’re more fun to share. Keep these tips in mind if you choose to include them:
    • Use your own images, videos, and graphics.
    • If you film or photograph members in your community, make sure you ask for permission before you post.
    • Think about the story you want to tell with the images you use and how it might inspire the people you want to reach.
  • Want more people to see key posts? You can highlight posts to anchor them to the top of your page. To take this a step further, you can also promote your posts. This has a small fee and will get your posts to show up in the newsfeeds of the types of people you target.
  • If you have a website or blog you want advocates to click on, make sure to include the link at the end of your post. Always give them a place where they can go to learn more, read an op-ed, or join your movement.

Twitter

Twitter is a powerful platform because it uses short and informative messages, 140 characters each, to reach journalists, bloggers, news outlets, policymakers, parents, teachers, and other key stakeholders in your local community.

Sample Posts for Twitter

You can use phrases, like this one (Did You Know), to make people curious. If they want to find out an answer, they are more likely to click on your link.

  • #DYK It’s not just food that makes our kids unhealthy—it’s drinks, too. It’s time to rethink your drink. [LINK]

Hashtags (#) are used to tag keywords in your messages. This can help spark engagement with other Twitter users talking about similar topics.

  • Let’s raise our glasses to water and say no to sugary drinks. Learn more today: [LINK] #rethinkyourdrink

Twitter is a great place to engage journalists, policymakers, and bloggers. Reach out and build relationships with others who care about your issue or use this tactic to catch their attention. Never start tweets with an @ symbol because then only you and the tagged user will see your tweet in newsfeeds! By placing any other character in front of @, the tweet is visible to a broader audience.

  • .@[JOURNALIST] Your article on the impact of sugary drinks was so informative! Thanks for sharing. #rethinkyourdrink

Remember to include a link to your action page or a website where advocates can learn more and get involved.

  • Water: it’s the sweetest drink around. Support more water and fewer sugary drinks! #rethinkyourdrink [LINK]

If there is a bill you want to see passed concerning this issue, engage your policymakers and/or community leaders through this platform. You can also provide this language to other community members so they can tweet at the same lawmaker in high volumes. This kind of message would be considered lobbying if you reference a specific proposed or pending piece of legislation.

  • .@[LEGISLATOR], your colleagues in [STATE] support reducing sugary drinks. Are you going to join them?
  • We’re thirsty for change! Say YES to more water and NO to sugary drinks. RT this if you agree!