Today, we’ll discuss how to use the limited time you have as a youth worker to work on this, and other social media tools, most effectively. You can also see my previous post: Twitter for Youth Ministry
Following the steps below will help you get the most out of each minute you have to work on your various social media accounts.
- Perhaps the most important: use your tweets to give something to your followers. Your tweets should only rarely (maybe 1 out of 20) answer the question “what are you doing right now?” and the rest of the time, should be focused on providing information or inspiration to your followers. You might tweet a link to an interesting website or blog, offer an inspiring quote from a book your reading, or invite them into conversation by asking a question. As a youth worker, you should use your website to give away books occasionally, and definitely advertise your church and youth ministry activities via Twitter.
- Link your Twitter account to your Facebook account so that when you tweet, it automatically shows up on your Facebook page. However, you can produce #FAIL posts on Facebook by using hashtags in your posts. Hashtags are meaningless in Facebook, save your hashtags for twitter only.
- Link your blog to Twitter so that when you post something on your blog, a notification and link are sent out via your Twitter account. You can link your blog to Facebook through Networked Blogs
- Use hashtags. For example, a tweet about an event might include a hashtag with the category, such as #guysnightout or #c4ignite. Hashtags make your tweets more searchable—and Twitter continues to evolve into a place where people search for information.
- Use hashtags to search for tweets about the topics you write about. Then join the conversation by posting tweets about your youth ministries content with the same hashtag.
- Craft tweets with provocative quotes from books you read including the Bible, followed by a link to a site that sells that book or has the bible online. It’s easiest to sit down and create perhaps 20 or so of these, linking to various sites (amazon, chapters/indigo, youversion, etc.), and post one per day. Or use a scheduling tool to set that up (see next point).
- Try out a tweet scheduling site such as hootsuite.com, and socialoomph.com, which allow you to schedule a variety of posts across media. Hootsuite and SocialOomph both have free and paid programs. Each has a variety of capabilities. Experiment to see what works for you.
- When someone else mentions you in a positive way, don’t just tweet back “thanks!” In addition, retweet! Especially if it’s a link to something they said about you, your youth ministry, or some sort of praise for your work.