You’ve read the recent Federal Media & Marketing Study issued by Market Connections. Just like the commercial sector, you understand that the federal market requires your B2G marketing strategy to include a social media program and you’re ready to go.

But, you have some homework to do before creating any social media programs. Consider the five ideas below before beginning that process:

  1. Set a goal for the number of blog posts each week and tweets each day. Establish “credible sources” for the social media team to read and scout.
  2. Analyze your competitors’ social media and monitor them weekly. Set your goals higher than theirs!
  3. Determine your company’s social personality (as if it’s a person). Then, create a litmus test for all future social media activities to be judged against.
  4. Learn and assess the benefits and liabilities of each social media platform. Where are your customers? Are they on LinkedIn, Twitter, Google +, Facebook? Be where they are. For instance, the Federal Media & Marketing Study shows that the top three social media outlets for the government are Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn.
  5. Have a plan for how you will follow up on inquiries and posts. If a visitor doesn’t receive a response, some trust is lost. Negative comments should also be addressed in a patient and respectful manner.

Once your homework is done and your strategy is in the works, keep in mind that you can plan your postings in advance by using a tool such as Hootsuite, but always be prepared to make adjustments. Social media is a very “organic” process and should have some structure and space to respond to trends.

What have you learned when setting up your social media strategy? What has worked and what hasn’t?