NASA Ranks as Most Social Media-Savvy in U.S., Study Says

If organizations that used Facebook to disseminate their message were actual people, NASA would be the captain of the football team and the class president, the White House would be his cheerleader girlfriend and the the Department of Commerce would be the nerd they both pushed into a locker, according to a new study from George Washington University…more…

I think that a big contributor to this is NASA’s social media policy which is incredibly open and inclusive and actually encourages employees to get online and start to play and experiment (within boundaries) whereas many of the other Agencies are far more restrictive..

Here are a few of the NASA social media policy guidelines, there are many more:

  • Be yourself – Use the first person and speak for yourself, not for NASA.
  • Identify yourself – State your name and role when you discuss your work.
  • You are personally responsible for the content you publish on blogs, wikis or any other form of user-generated media.
  • Be honest and transparent – Truth and sarcasm look the same on paper. The best way to make sure that you convey a truthful message is to be true.
  • Be professional and respectful at all times.
  • Contribute, engage, get involved – The unique value of social media is to interact with others by commenting, replying, giving feedback and letting your voice be heard. Without it, you’re just broadcasting.
  • Maintain and update content to ensure accurate and timely information

This is very cool, but the interesting question to me is “What did we miss?”. What other guidance would help the novice who is trying to build and engage their audience? That very useful information isn’t typically captured in a policy document, and is often learned via trial and error.

For example, one of the strategies I use to find new “friends” from gov’t is to browse the “friends lists” of my “friends” and to add people who seem to share my interest in OpenGov and Gov 2.0.

GovLoop is a key part of my strategy for keeping my content fresh and timely, i.e., I’ll often repost to Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook if I find a discussion or blog that interests me. I rarely post original content and typically just repost blogs, videos, articles, etc. that seem to be relevant to my role as the OpenGov Lead at NASA Ames.

What are some of your most successful strategies? How do you increase your “followers” on Twitter? How do you use Facebook Fan sites and other media channels to widen your net?

Leave a Comment

One Comment

Leave a Reply

Christina Morrison

Love the comparison, Megan! Compared to NASA and the White House I’d say we’re all just trying to make sure we have a date to prom. I think a great part of NASA’s openness is that it gives employees the chance to be open and share their opinions and knowledge with the community. Agencies would be wise to follow your social media guidelines, especially to let their voices be heard.