In this day and age, practically everyone is involved in social media of some type. Whether they post to Facebook, surf Twitter, share photos on Instagram, or use another platform, they have a presence. Homeowners associations can take advantage of this ability to instantly communicate with the masses by having its own social media channels. It can be a great way to stay connected and share information in a timely manner while cutting down on paper.
Before getting started, though, the HOA board should establish a social media policy. Decide exactly who will have access to these accounts and what types of postings are permissible. This goes for what the HOA posts, as well as comments from others. Include a notice on the page regarding appropriate content and let users know that negative or derogatory comments will be removed. Ensure that everyone agrees on what this means so that there is consistency when monitoring activity and deciding if a comment should be deleted.
Also, make sure that one or two people are actively monitoring the page to respond to questions or concerns, engage in conversation, and remove offensive material. This can also help with maintaining regular posts so that people know your accounts are active and not used only sporadically.
Social media can be used in many ways:
- Create events on Facebook to let members know about HOA activities. It gives them an opportunity to learn more, get reminders about upcoming events, and even RSVP. You can share reminders on Twitter too so people don’t forget.
- Share reminders about upcoming meetings, safety tips, or disruptions from the normal routine. For example, that the pool will be closed on a certain day for cleaning or repair, or that there will be construction work done that closes a portion of the street.
- Let members know about events happening in the community as well that they may be interested in attending.
- Post pictures from community events or showing updates to amenities. Remind residents of when the pool opens, that there will be a decorating contest, or simply how beautiful the sunset looks over the neighborhood through pictures with posts.
- You can share local news stories of interest too that may affect residents such as road closures, election of new officials, business openings or closings, changes to trash pickup services, or redistricting of schools.
There are so many opportunities that exist when it comes to social media and how HOAs can become more engaged with members. Just remember to use common sense and set up policies ahead of time. Don’t forget to email members, post flyers, or add into the next newsletter that the HOA has created these channels and provide URLs so members can follow along.
If your HOA is ready to get more involved on social media or looking for other ways to improve communication with members, turn to Kuester and find out how we can help.