SOCIAL MEDIA STYLE GUIDEOffice of Marketing and Communications2.2021

HEADERABOUT THE SOCIAL MEDIA STYLE GUIDEThis style guide is designed to help the PCOMcommunity make appropriate decisions when participatingin social media initiatives and activities either personallyor on behalf of the College and serve as a complement toPCOM’s existing Social Media Policy and Guidelines.2

GETTING STARTED WITH SOCIAL MEDIADO I NEED A SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNT?By creating a social media account, you are choosing to enter a crowded space. Take a moment andask the following questions before proceeding:WHY DO YOU WANT TO CREATE A SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNT?This answer should be more than simply that you want to reach more people with your message.You should be able to define both short-term and long-term goals, as well as your specific intendedaudience. It is not advisable to create a page for an event. Events can be supported by other socialmedia accounts that have an active following.CAN YOU PROVIDE CONTENT ON A REGULAR BASIS TO SUPPORT THIS ACCOUNT?The ability to post consistently is important to social media success. Depending on the social networkor account niche, you may not need to post everyday, but you must be able to continuously supportthe efforts of your account.IS THERE ANOTHER GROUP, DEPARTMENT, OR ORGANIZATION ON CAMPUS WITH A SIMILARAUDIENCE OR PURPOSE WITH WHOM YOU CAN WORK?Duplication of purpose or need is harmful, not helpful. Collaboration with another group may be abetter alternative in many scenarios.WILL THIS ACCOUNT BE SUPPORTED BY THE GROUP YOU REPRESENT?It is important that the account have the proper administrative support to be successful. The socialmedia account in question should be assigned officially to a faculty or staff member within theorganization, and account information should be kept securely to prevent loss of access should theoriginal owner be unable to continue operating the account.DEAD OR INACTIVE ACCOUNTS REFLECT NEGATIVELY ON PCOM. SOCIAL MEDIA LIVES 24HOURS A DAY, SEVEN DAYS A WEEK, 365 DAYS A YEAR—THE GROUP MUST BE READY TOSUPPORT THAT TIME FRAME.3

GETTING STARTED WITH SOCIAL MEDIAWHAT IS MY STRATEGY?Strategy is where the rubber meets the road and it is crucial for success in this crowded social environment. Creating a strategic plan around whatkind of content and messaging you intend to share is important both before you create an account and as it grows.IDENTIFY AND PLAN Define your goals. Determine your audience and community—know your stakeholders, members, influencers and resource providers. Learn your audience’s goals. Use data and analytics. Research your competitors and discover which networks your audience prefers. Determine your level of craft and curation for your content. Have a two-way dialog with your audience and be consistent in your level of engagement. Make team roles clear. Define who will be managing the community and what their duties will be. Make sure a plan of succession is in placefor account administrators to avoid account duplications and inactivity. Know the tools you plan to use to monitor and measure your network.DELIVER AND PARTICIPATE Determine the frequency of messaging. Remember that posting too frequently can often hinder engagement and follower retention. Deliver valuable content to the appropriate network. Monitor the conversations by watching and listening. Use desktop/browser/mobile versions of Tweet Deck, Hootsuite or Sprout Social tomonitor keywords, manage hashtags, schedule tweets and more. Notifications can also be enabled through each social media app directly. Participate in conversations. Ask good questions and clear up misinformation. Encourage desired behaviors, such as user-generated content.ANALYZE AND EVOLVE Use analytics to determine who, what, when, where and how. Native analytics are available directly within each social network, or can beaccessed through the monitoring platforms mentioned above. Measure how goals are being met. Calculate the return on investment to figure out if you should be throttling up or down efforts. Shift focus and adjust efforts depending on changes in demographics and interactions. For assistance and information on developing a strategy for your social media efforts, please contact [email protected] (PCOM) [email protected] (PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia)4

BEST PRACTICESFOR THOSE REPRESENTING OFFICIAL PCOM ENTITIESBE CLEARBE PREPAREDWhen acting as a representative of thePCOM community, clearly identify you oryour group’s relationship to PCOM andlink back to the appropriate pcom.eduWeb page to reinforce the connection toPCOM. If you are a member of the PCOMcommunity, but acting in social media asan individual, make it clear that you areexpressing your own opinion and not thatof the College.When creating or managing a social mediaaccount for a PCOM entity, ensure accesscredentials are shared by at least two peoplein case one team member is unreachable orno longer at the College.BE “PCOM”BE SUCCESSFULRemember you represent PCOM: readand familiarize yourself with PCOM’sSocial Media Policy, PCOM’s GraphicStyle Guide, PCOM’s Editorial StyleGuide (found on and allother policies governing the institution.Speak in accordance with your role at theCollege. If you have questions, pleasecontact [email protected] (PCOM) [email protected] (PCOM Georgiaand PCOM South Georgia).Create a social media strategy: identifyyour audience, the account’s personalityand goals, staffing, content calendar andother tools for success before jumping in.Take advantage of resources that the SocialMedia Manager can provide, includingtemplates, best practices and consultationto help you succeed.5

BEST PRACTICESFOR EVERYONE IN THE PCOM COMMUNITYBE AUTHENTICBE SMARTRepresent yourself accurately and betransparent about your role at PCOM.Admit when you make mistakes and correctinaccurate information. Consider that youare in an academic environment and theimplications of utilizing a PCOM-providedplatform that automatically identifies you inyour role at PCOM.Social media is “real life.” Behavior in socialmedia is no different than in e-mail, publicspeech, classroom lecture, conversationwith friends, or a poster on a wall. Anythingconsidered inappropriate offline is likelyalso inappropriate online. When in doubtabout whether to share or not, it is better tobe safe than sorry.BE THOUGHTFULBE RESPECTFULBE MINDFUL OF RELATIONSHIPSBe mindful of what is consideredappropriate behavior in different countriesand cultures around the world and of howyour words, actions and images may beperceived. Know your audience and thinkbefore you post.Social media provides a place to fostercommunity and conversation. Adding valueis good when content is on topic and whendone in moderation. Positive and negativecomments are legitimate parts of anyconversation. It is OK to accept the goodand bad, but not the ugly.Think through creating friend/fan/followerconnections where authority relationshipsexist. By adding a person to yourconnections, you give them access to yourcontent, and thus relinquish control of thatcontent, as connections can share yourcontent as they wish.FOR ANY QUESTIONS RELATED TO BEST PRACTICES, PLEASE CONTACT THE SOCIAL MEDIATEAM: [email protected]


OFFICIAL PCOM ACADEMIC AND ADMINISTRATIVE ACCOUNTSIMAGE GUIDELINES FOR SOCIAL MEDIAOnce approval is granted for an official PCOM account by a member of the Office ofMarketing and Communications’ Social Media Team, the Social Media Team can provideresources or other brand elements to be used on the account (i.e. profile picture, coverphoto, icon, background, etc.).Please see PCOM’s Graphic Style Guide and Social Media Policy (found for guidelines on the use of PCOM’s logo and on owning and operating asocial media account affiliated with the institution.8

PCOM STUDENT CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS ACCOUNTSIMAGE GUIDELINES FOR SOCIAL MEDIAStudent clubs and organizations (whether official or unofficial) are NOTpermitted to use PCOM’s logo or wordmark as their profile photos, coverphotos, or account icons. Use of these assets is reserved for academicand administrative accounts of the College, including the primary Twitter,Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and LinkedIn accounts. Users looking touse the PCOM logo for other, appropriate instances must get approval todo so by submitting a Marketing Request Form.It is acceptable to use a profile image that is a photograph that containsthe logo in it—such as a picture of a building or a picture of a studentwearing a T-shirt.When selecting or using a photo, make sure you have the legal rights tothat image.Please see the following page for resources available for student clubsand organizations.DO NOT borrow or copy images from existing officialCollege pages.DO NOT stretch or edit any imagery.DO NOT use the PCOM flame logo or any part of the flame logo.DO NOT edit the brand colors.9

STUDENT CLUBS AND ORGANIZATIONS ACCOUNTSRESOURCESReady-made profile images and cover photos made specifically for approved/official student clubs and organizations are available for download. [email protected] to be granted access to the folder on the GoogleDrive. Access will be granted upon verification of student status with the Officeof the Registrar.For any questions related to social media imagery, please [email protected] (PCOM) or [email protected] (PCOM Georgiaand PCOM South Georgia).RESOURCESSAMPLES OF READY-MADE PROFILE IMAGES:10

IMAGE GUIDELINES FOR SOCIAL MEDIA. Once approval is granted for an official PCOM account by a member of the Office of . Marketing and Communications' Social Media Team, the Social Media Team can provide . resources or other brand elements to be used on the account (i.e. profile picture, cover . photo, icon, background, etc.). Please see