At this year’s Winter MACo Conference, communications experts from across the state weighed in on how to effectively use social media in the COVID-era and beyond.
Whether our local governments were sharing testing site locations, how many vaccinations have been administered, or whether trash pick up has been affected, social media has played a key role in reaching residents – perhaps even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic. Panelists during the “Extra, Extra #ReadAllAbout” session shared social media best practices including how to track engagement, develop campaigns, and create organic messaging.
- Mileah Kromer, Professor, Goucher College
- Jeffrey Amoros, Communications Director, Anne Arundel County Executive’s Office
- Adam Abadir, Deputy Director of State Affairs, Mayor’s Office of Government Relations, Baltimore City
- Matt Anthes, Vice President for Digital Communications, Hatcher Group
- Michael Ricci, Director of Communications, Maryland Office of the Governor
- Jan Gardner, County Executive, Frederick County
County Executive Gardner kicked off the discussion by introducing Professor Kromer, who informed the audience about what social media is good for and what it isn’t – namely polling and surveying residents to determine public sentiment. Director Amoros provided a local government perspective on how to best track community engagement, including available resources and useful metrics. Deputy Director Abadir, also providing a local government perspective, focused on his experiences as the communications director for the Baltimore City Health Department and how to craft messaging to best reach mass and niche audiences.
Like Professor Kromer, Mr. Anthes discussed overall trends in social media usage and the advantages of using social media to reach residents in certain situations, especially those requiring micro-targeting. To conclude the presentations, Director Ricci explained how local governments should develop coordinated campaigns around issues and achievements, which means planning with a goal in mind and a lot of repetition.
More about MACo’s Winter Conference: