With a new year rapidly approaching, now is an opportune moment to re-examine your communications strategy to ensure that it not only best matches your constituent needs, but also your agenda and budget. The ongoing pandemic means local governments need methods of creating community engagement that cannot solely rely on in-person events. They need to be able to communicate critical information in a timely manner while also sharing accomplishments and other news in a community friendly fashion. And whenever possible, they need to be able to do so while conserving vital resources like time and money.
In pursuit of those goals, many local governments have turned to social media channels like Facebook and Twitter as a communications solution. But just like a web site, social media channels by themselves are not enough. Social media is unfortunately a double-edged sword where the positive can easily be matched by the negative. On the positive side, the platforms are extremely popular and enable local governments to interact with their constituents via methods already familiar to them. On the negative, that interaction unfortunately can come with a high cost. It’s simply no longer enough for the other side to disagree with you – no matter what the other side is. Comments can quickly become negative and personal. And multiple rounds of litigation have shown that the first amendment also protects trolls. You can’t simply block the dissenters without incurring liability.
And just like your web site, social media is obviously too popular to be ignored in your communications strategy. However, there are better ways to manage your entire publication process and to do so holistically. Local governments need to recognize there is a difference between posts of community interest made by the government, real time alerts that convey vital safety information, and individual comments made by elected officials. And each of those types of communication can best be served by different methods. What local governments need in their communications strategy is balance and the ability to optimize their content by sharing it via the right method. ITsimple provides local governments with the entire technological ecosystem to make that possible, and to do so in a cost-effective fashion.
With ITsimple, local officials have a safe place to share announcements, report on achievements, and publish blog posts via an end user application. And while that doesn’t come with the liability of posting directly on social media, it still provides a centralized way for residents to contact their elected officials with legitimate concerns. ITsimple makes publication of content easy, efficient, and effective via SpotlightCMS, ITsimple’s turnkey community engagement solution. SpotlightCMS is a real-time community engagement platform that enables management of multiple publication channels – mobile, web and all social media presences – from one user-friendly dashboard and single data entry point. It gives you the power to publish what you want, where you want, and when you want. SpotlightCMS pairs with a free end user app, It’sMyTown, that puts information and services in one location for your residents and makes it far easier for them to engage and find the information they need. It’sMyTown is freely available from Apple and Google app stores, has no privacy concerns or social media dependency because no registration is required and no personal information is gathered or stored, and helps build a sense of community and support local engagement.
Now more than ever, local governments need a cost-effective communications solution that gives them broad communication coverage, lets them control their message, and also streamlines their content publication and management processes. When you’re ready to meet the communication demands of the times, It’sMyTown can help. And when you’re ready to upgrade your web site or entire communications strategy, ITsimple can already be there with a proven strategy for success in place.