Helping a charity to use social media

Helen's Trust logoRecently I went to help the staff at the Helen’s Trust charity as they’ve just started using social media. Based in Bakewell, Derbyshire, they wanted to connect with a new audience in north Derbyshire and south Yorkshire.

The charity helps incurably ill people stay in their own home by providing tailored support for people and their families with a range of services and help.

Firstly we talked about using an appropriate tone on social media, based on their existing style from their website. We also discussed language, in particular using the word ‘dying’ and whether or not to talk about death.

Tweets and retweets

I passed on some tips on how to write good tweets and how to encourage retweets. In the same vein we also looked at words and types of tweets that were less likely to get retweeted. We looked at the range and purpose of tweets – some are to give information, some are to start/respond to conversations and some tweets are building blocks to give an insight to the inner workings of the charity.

Then we looked at Facebook and discussed how to make the most of it – again focusing on tone, engagement and timing.

Jessica Ennis' recipe for Jerk Chicken

Jessica Ennis' recipe for Jerk Chicken

The charity has just produced a lovely calendar featuring lots of Britain’s top athletes sharing their favourite recipes. It’s the perfect thing to share on Facebook! We had a think about how to spread the message on Twitter too, including asking the featured sportspeople to retweet the link, sending it to foodie tweeters like @GuardianFood, @Channel4Food and including hashtags to tweets when food programmes are on e.g. #jamiesgreatbritain.

Incidentally, I bought one and can’t wait to try Jess Ennis’ jerk chicken, go on – get one!

This was my first engagement as a Media Trust volunteer. Media Trust matches volunteers in the media industry to charities who need support.

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