• Alesa Mackool

5 Things to Post on Social Media If You Want to Turn Your Audience into Activists

Use these five types of social media content to inspire, educate, and empower your organization's members and followers.

1. Powerful member stories

Stories from real people are the most important things you can share. They reaffirm that your organization and its priorities actually matter, while providing a powerful emotional appeal.

We love this worker story shared by our client, the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO. Freight Rail Conductor Mike Rankin’s first-person narrative gave a human face to the life-or-death issue of train crew size reduction. We made the decision to share Rankin's full, harrowing story in the share text, rather than on a linked website. It became TTD's most shared Facebook post and served to educate a wide audience about why a seemingly abstract policy change might impact their lives.

2. Reactions to the news

If your organization wants to be part of the conversation around a breaking news story, your message needs to be up and running while people are still figuring out how they feel.

In May, an anti-union poster from Delta Airlines went very viral. The Delta poster absurdly implied that workers should buy a video game system instead of paying union dues. The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, the organization through which Delta ramp service workers had been trying to unionize, responded by tweeting a similarly designed poster and news coverage that reflected their own pro-worker messaging.

3. Alerts

We often help clients build out robust tracking and reporting programs so they can know exactly when, where, and how opposition groups are contacting their members. This kind of timely information makes for great social media content.

With this post, which warns educators about an anti-union mail campaign they might encounter, Pennsylvania Spotlight created a way for teachers to share information and feel connected across the state.

4. Badges

Images that make a bold, unequivocal statement are some of the most shared posts on social media. Sharing a badge-style post, like this one from AFL-CIO, is an entry-level action that reaffirms your audiences' beliefs and enables them to engage their friends, family, and coworkers with confidence.

5. Calls to offline action

Here's the deal: social media posts are only part of the equation. Engage with your audience, build trust, connect them with one another, treat them as the valuable community they are, and then motivate them to get their bodies out into the world and take action. And once an action or event is happening, grow its impact by sharing photos and video from the ground.

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