Social Media Resources

Social media guidelines, policies, tips and tools for managing your social care organisation's social media presence or helping those you support use social media websites.

social media prism

social media prism (Photo: bigerking)

More than ever, it is important for health and social care providers to think about adding social media channels - Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc - to their communications mix.  The proof is in the numbers - if Facebook users were a nation, it would be the world's third biggest being China and India.  People are also using social media to tell their stories, search and compare health and social experiences, and start conversations on social care developments.  These resources will get you started on why social media matters and how you can take advantage.

Social media overview

Introduction to social media
An introduction to get started with the planning and management of social media

Being a leader who gets digital 

Laila Takeh of UNICEF UK expands on her opinion piece published in Lasa’s Digital: What every charity leader should know.

On-line Social Media Dictionary
Even to those who have used social media for many years there are terms that can be confusing, new social media sites and just words that need clarifying. This 2014 definitive guide from Hootsuite lists 154 of the most common social media terms, abbreviations and websites being used.

Demonstrating your impact with digital storytelling

Digital storytelling can be very powerful in communicating your message. This article explains how to get started.

Social media planning

NHS Employers Social Media Guide and Planning Toolkit

Download this free social media toolkit which contains all you need to embed social media in your organisation. Set your objectives, identify the right channels for different goals and develop a strategy tailored to your organisation and get started on the first six months of your social media journey.

Idealware: Social Media Decision Guide
Helps guide organisations through the process of identifying the right channels for different goals

CharityComms : Guide to Social Media for Charities
This two-part guide (in Slideshare format) explains what charities need to know about social media.
Part 1. Covers the background to social media and why it is important for charities to be involved together with an introduction to the main social media websites.
Part 2. Goes into more depth about how social media can be used for campaigning, fundraising and building awareness of your activity. There is also a section on measuring success and crisis planning.

Social media policies and procedures

A social media policy outlines the organisational guidelines or principles of communicating in the online world. Many do not have an explicit social media and rely on trust and common sense from their staff, volunteers and trustees.  Do you need an explicit social media policy?

ICT Champions: Social media guidelines
An introduction to the key ingredients you'll need in creating a social media policy. We have developed a set of Social Media Guidelines that you can download and adapt for use by your organisation.

How to write a social media policy
This article from inc.com is for those requiring a more in depth policy.

How to create a social media policy
5 social media tips from Heidi Cohen.

BBC social media guidelines
Excellent guidance on drawing the line between personal and corporate use of social media.

The Nurses Guide to Use of Social Media
This pocket sized reference guide from the US is a handy reminder of the way nursing staff and care professionals can use social media for good, whilst retaining patient confidentiality, privacy and trust. 

Social media 'How To Guides'

There are many websites and guides that tell you how to use specific social networking websites. We've started off this section with a couple that will be useful to social care providers and people working in a social care setting. We will be adding more to this section later.

Social Networks and Accessibility
For users that find social media websites difficult to navigate or confusing to follow, there are accessible version of the main sites (e.g Facebook and Twitter). SAIF (Scottish Accessible Information Forum) have produced information on their website about accessible versions of social media websites which is also available in downloadable form (Word, PDF & HTML). 

Friends of the Elderly - Short Guide to Social Media
This short 8 page downloadable guide produced by the Friends of the Elderly network covers the basics of getting started on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin as an older person. 

Staying Safe on Social Media and Online
The Foundation for People With Learning Disabilities have published a very visual and straightforward free guide to download about 'Staying Safe on Social Media and Online' which shows how to use the main social media websites and internet services such as Skype and e-mail for people with learning disabilities. Highly recommended reading.

How to use Social Media - by the #weNurses community
The WeNurses community is one of the many Twitter Chats run by healthcare professionals who believe in connecting people and sharing information, ideas and expertise to share best practice and ultimately provide better care. As these chats happen on-line on Twitter they have compiled a great selection of links and resources about social media use relevant to nursing and carers here.

More specific guidance about how to use Twitter can be found on this 'Twitterversity' page, which very helpfully has been broken down into information for 'Student' Tweeters and 'Graduate' Tweeters and 'Professor' Tweeters, so something for everyone.

Social Media 'How To' guides from Media Trust
There are a range of on-line and downloadable 'How To' guides on the Media Trust 'All Our Stories' webpages. In addition to covering Social Media there are guides providing tips on using Photography, Audio and Video based media to tell your story. Copyright, Legal Issues and Staying Safe On-line are also covered. Find them all here.

Downloadable resources and links

Plan your social media presence, which tools to use and how to target your audience.

Idealware: A Practical Guide to Integrated Communications: A Workbook for Nonprofits
How do you create and maintain a consistent voice across digital channels such as email newsletters, blogs, Twitter and Facebook.

Social Media Surgeries
A social media surgery is a free informal gathering of people who want to learn how to use the web to communicate, campaign or collaborate. Surgeries are deliberately relaxed, no presentations, no jargon, no-one telling people what they think they should know and could also be ideal for a group of people wishing to find out more about social media together. If you want to attend a surgery - then register here, if you want to offer help or set up a new surgery then please do the same.. Here's a recipe of what makes a good surgery.

Anything missing? Tell us in the comments if you've seen or used a resource we should include here.

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