Communications & Marketing

Social Media Policy

An integral part of Lewis-Clark State College’s charge and reputation has been its focus on connecting learning to real life – especially when it comes to careers, causes, needs, etc. As such, it is only fitting that Lewis-Clark State embrace and utilize the powerful tools available in social media to connect with future students, current students, parents, peers, alumni, and friends in an even more meaningful and direct way.

Social media is not a fad. As far as communicating is concerned, it is both the present and the future. With this in mind, we encourage LCSC faculty, staff, and students to be aware of social media and how social technologies can help share information, raise awareness, develop relationships, start and propel dialogue, advance knowledge, build support, and aid in collaboration.

For all accounts created on behalf of a Lewis-Clark State College department, organization, club, or other group, we’ve developed the following guidelines.

Social Media Guidelines

Get Official Approval – Approval to create a social media site that represents Lewis-Clark State College (e.g. uses “Lewis-Clark State” or “LCSC,” and/or “Warriors”) must come from a department/division director. Additionally, directors are strongly encouraged to consult with the director of college communications.

Limit your Accounts – Instead of creating separate accounts/pages for events and subunits within a department, which often dilutes messages and confuses users, it is recommended that social media efforts be unified under a primary department account. Be sure the page you want to create doesn't already exist! 

Name your Account Correctly – All official LCSC social media accounts should be named using one of these three options: Lewis-Clark State College _________________, Lewis-Clark State ____________, or LCSC _______________. Note: be careful not to "steal" the name of another department or division which would be more accurately identified by such a name.

Be Professional – All accounts should look and conduct operations in a professional manner. Do not post confidential, private, or proprietary information about Lewis-Clark State College, its students, its alumni, or fellow employees. Use good ethical judgment and follow the college’s policies and federal requirements, such as Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Post Responsibly – What you write is ultimately your responsibility, however, keep in mind that if you are posting on behalf of an LCSC organization or department, what you say directly reflects on LCSC. Do not post content that is threatening, obscene, or distasteful. Follow the rule of thumb: “When in doubt, leave it out.” Discuss with your supervisor proper protocol for responding to controversial subjects or negative posts.

Don’t Over-Post – Too many posts per day will drive users away from your page. Be judicious about when and how you post.

Teacher Education AvatarAdhere to LCSC’s Brand Guidelines – Officially approved artwork as well as guidelines for the use of logos, graphics, colors, etc. can be found at www.lcsc.edu/communications/brand.

Refrain from using unapproved logos and graphics It is recommended that you use an image similiar to the one shown here for avatar purposes. To have one built for you, contact Graphic Communications or College Communications. A basic flag, suitable for any official page, can be downloaded here: Flag Avatar.

Respect Copyright and Fair Use Laws – When posting, be mindful of the copyright and intellectual property rights of others and of the college. Unless you own the rights of the content, you may not reproduce, adapt, or communicate it without the written permission of the copyright owner, nor use the content for commercial purposes

Be Accurate – Make sure you have all the facts before you post. Cite and link to your sources whenever possible. If you make an error, correct it quickly and visibly.

Be Cautious with Personal Opinions – The Supreme Court has made clear that First Amendment protections do not guarantee the right of public employees to publicly criticize their employers in the course of their employment. Additionally, LCSC’s name or marks may not be used to endorse any opinion, product, private business, cause, or political candidate.

Gauge Value and Interest – Ask yourself if your content adds value and interest to the discussion. Furthermore, ask yourself if the content promotes the LCSC brand or detracts from it. 

Respond in a Timely Manner –  Social media relations thrive when enquiries and posts are responded to promptly. Moderators must also be able to quickly respond to any concerns as soon as they arise with the appropriate response.

Monitor your Accounts – It is the responsibility of those managing accounts to actively monitor the use of their accounts to ensure compliance with these guidelines. Accounts that are dormant and/or not adhering to best practices should be reported to the College Communications Office.

Delete Dormant Accounts – If you do not have enough content to regularly post on your page(s), meaning your site is inactive, delete or deactivate the site. Pages that languish are poor reflections of your department and Lewis-Clark State College.

 

Getting Started / Getting the Most Out of Social Media

Form a strategy.

  • Identify your purpose.
  • Determine your audience(s).
  • Define types of content you will post.

Set your goals.

  • Clearly define goals for your social media site/page.
    • Are you trying to communicate a campaign? Promote your department/division/group/program? Connect with alumni? Build community? Or, increase overall awareness of your entity?
  • Common social media goals include: increased traffic to website, reputation management, brand awareness, and search engine rankings.

Posting.

  • Keep your posts short.
  • Spell check your posts before posting.
  • Post what your followers want to see, not just what you want to post.
  • Post new, fresh, timely content.
  • Resist posting too frequently. No content is better than low quality content.
  • Vary your posts: photos, links, status updates, videos.
  • Post a call to action! Ask a question or use fill in the blank.
  • Use a casual tone of voice.
  • Respond to and like comments, mentions, etc.

Conduct research.

  • Research other organizations and their social media networks.
  • Take note of ideas that work as well as those that don’t.

Measure success.

  • Determine what success should look like in order to reach your goals.
    • Increased traffic to your website? Better communication with prospective students? More fans, followers and/or comments?

Shut it down.

  • If you do not have enough content to regularly post on your page(s), meaning your site is inactive, delete or deactivate the site. Pages that languish are poor reflections of your department and Lewis-Clark State College.

For more tips and best practices on creating and maintaining a successful social media presence for your department, organization, club, unit, or project, feel free to contact the LCSC College Communications Office at 208-792-2200 or ljfowler@lcsc.edu