Dear Rotarians,
As many of you already know, I am an active user and proponent of social media. I first joined Facebook in 2009 and have since engaged with LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram. I also manage several accounts professionally and belong to a number of social media groups.  Social media has evolved a great deal over the years and continues to change by the minute!  In order to help Rotary Clubs and Rotarians make best use of social media, I've compiled a list of my Top Ten Tips.  Perhaps they'll help some folks reading this note. Good luck with your social media happenings and, most of all, have fun! 
  1. Social media is a tool for enhancing relationships, engaging with new people, following news, and sharing information. It is NOT meant to replace human relationships or connections. It is meant to ADD and enhance existing connections.
  2. If you have social media accounts, USE THEM. Be active in posting content, sharing news, commenting on other people's news, etc. If your social media account(s) are dormant, why have them at all?  Be active or just withdraw from those social media channels all together.
  3. Generally speaking, Facebook is more geared toward personal life, fun, and current happenings. LinkedIn is more professionally driven yet still provides opportunities to connect with a wide range of people.  Twitter is for short and direct pieces of information and is a great resource for instant news and immediate happenings. Instagram is driven largely by photos and video clips and attracts a young audience. YouTube is for videos only.  There are dozens of other social media channels, but these are accepted as the most used.
  4. Rotary Clubs typically use a PAGE feature which can be liked or followed on social media rather than a GROUP which is often limited to specific members and not open to all.
  5. Rotary International generates excellent content for all social media channels mentioned and all Rotarians should consider connecting with RI.
  6. District 7390 has a page on Facebook and LinkedIn and invites all Rotarians to Connect. Our district also has a Rotary Means Business page on both channels.
  7. Almost all 43 clubs in District 7390 have pages on Facebook and liking them is a great way to stay apprised of events and happenings around the area.
  8. Content should be kept short, positive, and have a hook. Either an interesting fact, picture, or link. Give people a reason to engage with your posts.
  9. Likes, comments & shares provide instant feedback for your post, but longer term returns on the investment in social media can take years. Maybe a new member comes to one of your Rotary Club meetings only after following you for some length of time.  Maybe a social media post generates an inquiry that eventually leads to membership. Some ROIs may never be measured.
  10. Social media should be supplemented with a vibrant website, friendly and welcoming membership materials, and real people behind the posts! 
If you are in the social media arena, or considering jumping in, make sure you can give it the attention needed to work the best!  Post often and keep the messaging genuine, meaningful, fun and creative and social media can be a valuable tool for your Rotary Club and members! 
Yours in Service,
District Governor Una Martone