Looking for a Social Media Strategy? Join the Navy

In January, a catastrophic 7.0 Mw earthquake hit Haiti. Around the same time, the U.S. Navy launched its Facebook page. During the aftermath, the Navy was one of several organizations that used social media to its full advantage, communicating with other members of its group, and the public at large. Six months later, that page has 70,000 fans.

In a video posted on SocialMediaExaminer, Commander Scott McIlnay, Navy Public Affairs Officer and Director, Emerging Media Integration, says Facebook is just one part of a multi-faceted social media strategy that includes Twitter, YouTube, Flickr, and Slideshare. The biggest lesson he’s learned in the past six months?

Whoever you or wherever you are, you need to have a social media presence up now, sooner rather than later … when you’ll need that channel is when the crisis occurs. You don’t need to figure out how to get your voice in social media during a crisis, you need it beforehand.

McIlnay says the Navy has had a decentralized social media presence for quite a while. “We’ve had a lot of people using social media for a long time with great success.” Now the Navy is using it on an enterprise level, from the top down, following the example of the early adopters. He says the Navy uses its Facebook page to engage with the Navy community. It uses Twitter to put out content on the Navy itself and on topics of interest to the Navy. It uses YouTube to put out prepackaged video content, and B-roll for the media. Flickr is used to push out still photography. Slideshare is used to share analysis that might be of benefit to others in the military, or the public in general.

So, there you have it: a social media strategy, and tactics, you can deploy now.

To find out more, see the whole video below and see the original article on the SocialMediaExaminer site.

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