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Situation: City Sought to Improve Social Media ROI

Recently a municipality in North America asked us to conduct a comprehensive social media audit of their entire social footprint. They wanted a social media assessment that would help them modernize their approach and understand how to enhance results while increasing efficiencies. Always striving to improve, they also wanted to understand current best practices and to see how they compared to other local governments. With over 40 official and unofficial accounts for various departments across numerous social media platforms, the communication team worried that staff time could be used more effectively for the benefit of residents.

Challenge: No Consistency Across Departments

Although all departments worked tirelessly to serve residents, each was governed by its own strategic master plan and supported by its own communication and marketing team and budgets. Although general guidelines were in place for determining whether a new social media account should be opened, the final decision rested with each individual department. The result was a patchwork of accounts supported by staff with varying levels of expertise which led to inconsistencies in visual standards, tone of voice, frequency of posting, service levels and more. Several accounts had significant overlaps in unique followers with many targeting the exact same audience profile.

Solution: Social Media Audit

It’s hard to see the forest for the trees so the City sought out a third-party to conduct the social media assessment. They chose to work with Advantis because they valued the depth and breadth of experience of our audit team. Having the benefit of working with different types of organizations from local governments, associations and companies in various sectors provides the Advantis team a unique perspective and the ability to benchmark best practices across industries.

Advantis’ Social Media Success Framework guided each step of the audit. The Advantis team highlighted effective processes as well as shortcomings in processes related to strategy, target audience, content development, community building, measurement and governance. We also conducted a deep dive into a recent social media advertising campaign to provide staff with a relevant case study to highlight best practices and insights they could immediately apply to future campaigns. As well, the Advantis Social Media Health Check shared best practices gleaned from a landscape analysis of comparator cities’ social media approaches.

Result: A Path Forward

The social media audit provided the City with an overview of social media best practices, a comprehensive review of their social media footprint and over 25 actionable recommendations, including guidance on how to resource social media management and recommendations for streamlining the number of social media accounts. Now the communication team is confident that the City is equipped to glean the most value from social media for its residents.