Seven tips for using Facebook if you work in the public sector

Dec 14, 2014

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  1. albfreeman

    These are all good suggestions. It is not easy getting everybody to understand how we should be using Facebook. There can be a tendency to think that everything should be shared to Facebook – a link to every press release. This just doesn’t work on Facebook, but it can be hard challenging the notion that “we have an obligation to tell them this.”

    I will put forward two tips of my own:

    Don’t be afraid to delete a badly performing Facebook post. I recently had the difficult task of promoting an important consultation about the future of our district. Not the kind of thing that I felt would normally engage our Facebook audience. My first attempt went down like a lead balloon. After an hour it had zero engagement. So I deleted it, got a bit more adventurous with the wording, posted it again and it was our most successful post that week.

    Allow Facebook posts time to gain momentum by spreading your posts out and not posting too many times. Buffer did some research which showed that the average lifespan of a tweet is just 17 minutes. Facebook is very different in this regard. I aim for just two posts, or even only one post a day on the Bradford Council Facebook page. Last Monday morning I posted a link to our latest job vacancies. It slowly and steadily gathered engagement for the first couple of hours. It continued to snowball, and was still gaining new engagement well into the evening. It was our only post that day but performed better than anything else that week.

  2. Lou Gibson

    All great suggestions. A variety of relevant content is the key for the pages I manage, items which are interesting, sometimes fun, not sales based and have a warm approachable tone work best for us. Great content will also help the page SEO too. The frequency of posting I think depends for us entirely upon service need, objectives and the level of engagement that can be resourced. There’s no point putting loads of great content out there, gaining a ton of engagement and then either not being able to respond to it (where needed) or spending too much time responding to it. I’d love to know more about the EU video content being more succesful when watched directly from Facebook, how are the gauging success?

    • Helen Reynolds

      Thanks for the insightful comment – it is definitely true that service, and user, needs and good reasons to share information are vital. The presentation given by the EU is here – much better straight from the horse’s mouth! Alb’s post is also a cracking demonstration of the principle. Cheers!

    • Helen Reynolds

      Absolute beauty of a post, thanks so much for sharing it here!


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Hel Reynolds

Hel Reynolds

Author of this post

Hel is social media trainer and boss of Comms Creatives. She has been working in comms since 2005, and has been brushing up her expertise in social media for brands since the good old days of MySpace. She also draws the Comms Cartoons, and is usually attached to a mug of coffee.

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