I agree with elements of everyone’s response.
Now more than ever, the “voice” of a brand is made up of the collective actions of all of it’s representatives. No longer is it limited to the CAO, PIO, or marketing manager, but rather, it is an amalgamation of corporate stewards and the customers they interact with. What people hear and experience with your brand (in this case, local government) becomes a part of the voice as well, due to the proliferation of social media outlets as tools of expression.
While there is nothing worse than limiting the voice of your people (customers and line level staff included), I agree with Thomas that creating a culture of openness and responsibility within our organizations is the best strategy for successfully navigating the world of social media.
Simply put – educate your organization on what you want your brand to be, and then empower them to represent it. All will be made better for it.
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