The Social Media Beat

The Social Media Beat

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Using Social Media to Boost Employee Morale

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

I think it’s safe to say we always hear when someone is unhappy, something goes wrong or someone thinks something is wrong. But it’s rare when people go out of their way to let us know when something good happens or they think an officer has done well. When someone is fired up about something positive that’s happened, they don’t usually go out of their way to let people know. Social media is changing that. It’s never been easier than today to tweet, Facebook, blog, or post a video to YouTube, Vine, or Instagram about how you feel about something. Though this cuts both ways, it’s definitely a positive thing for police agencies looking to engage, communicate, and improve relationships with their communities. It’s also an important tool that can be used to boost employee morale. For example, every weekday we post an item called Today’s Good News on the Richmond Police Facebook page. We started that posting as a way to bring positive news to our community a ...

Read the rest of entry »

Monday, March 31, 2014

Sharing the Reins

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

If your agency has a pretty well established and active Facebook and Twitter page and you’re looking for that next step in enhancing your social media presence, let me suggest allowing some of your officers to tweet on behalf of the department. Though the idea of sharing the reins of all your social media hard work with others who have different skill levels and other responsibilities may sound scary, with planning and guidance, it can be hugely beneficial. One large agency example is the Dallas Police Department. If you haven’t heard about their recently unveiled campaign called “DPD Tweets Big,” it’s something to read about. They’re one of the first agencies in the country to support and encourage their officers to tweet from the field. The Philadelphia Police Department is another great example. Two members of our command staff – Deputy Chief John Buturla (www.Twitter.com/RPDDepChiefJB) and sector Lt. Dave Naoroz (www.Twitter.com/RPDLtDave) – have be ...

Read the rest of entry »

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Using Social Media to Go Beyond Recruitment

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Many agencies have quickly come to realize how beneficial social media sites can be when it comes to recruitment efforts. But do you also realize that the “fans” you make during these endeavors are very likely to stick around and become long-time, strong supporters of your agency? That’s what we’ve seen at Richmond Police during the past five years we’ve used our Facebook page to share information and the experience of what our recruits go through to become sworn officers. We started by doing weekly photos of what the recruits learned that week—from the excitement of being placed in the K-9 bite suit to the dull, but critically important skills of report writing.     We’ve also done a Tumblr blog and different types of video. Though some might question why we keep posting similar information for every class, the comments alone show us why it’s so important. Here’s one example:   Because the recruits in th ...

Read the rest of entry »

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

RPD Loves Animals & Good Police Stories – And So Does the Rest of the World

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

At this point in the social media game, most people know that photos of animals are pretty popular. From police agencies’ K-9 units to mounted squads to animal rescues, it’s clear that the people love animal postings. But a recent Facebook project of ours just blew us away by showing us how MUCH the whole world loves both animal postings AND good police stories when it made two of our posts go viral. That project (and Facebook photo album) was called “RPD Loves Animals.” The main reason we did this project was to showcase how much animals teach us and how those experiences make our officers better people and subsequently better officers. I think a lot of the times when people hear about police and animals, it involves an officer shooting a dog, but not this time. This time we profiled six officers who have a variety of interesting animals or animal experiences and what it has taught them. Some examples included an officer who takes the time to volunteer at the city animal she ...

Read the rest of entry »

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Richmond Police’s 10,000th Tweet!

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

There’s a lot to be said for recognizing the milestones in your social media journey. It shows how far you’ve come, what you’ve accomplished, and inspires you for the future. Most of the time, agencies do this by keeping track of the number of followers or likes, but as my colleague Chris Hsiung recently pointed out, successful social media use is more than just the numbers. That’s why when we at Richmond Police realized we were about to tweet our 10,000th tweet, we thought it important to stop and reflect. It was a moment to realize just how often we communicate with our citizens via Twitter. A lot of thought and planning goes into most of our tweets so that we and our community get the most engagement possible, and we wanted our 10,000th to reflect that and celebrate the milestone. Our message was obvious. We wanted to say thank you to the community that has supported, encouraged, and motivated us. But we wanted to make it a special thank you. That’s why we asked Chief ...

Read the rest of entry »

Monday, December 30, 2013

Looking Back, Looking Forward

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Reflecting on the past year of law enforcement and social media use to me shows a tremendous amount of growth, creativity, and partnerships, not just for Richmond Police, but also for agencies across the country and the world. More agencies are inspired and encouraged (Yay for buy-in from the top!) to start using social media every day. They’re trying some amazingly new and creative ways to connect with their community—from personalized videos to in-depth TweetAlongs! And most importantly they’re recognizing that social media is far, far more than just a passing fad. In Richmond, I’m proud to say that one of our goals for the New Year includes creating more social media accounts for some of our officers who interact most often with the public as leaders of the department’s different sectors. For example, Sector 213 Lt. David Naoroz celebrates one year this month of his use of @RPDLtDave Twitter and Foursquare accounts, but another sector lieutenant has requested an official ...

Read the rest of entry »

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

To Be the Best, It Needs to be a Team Effort

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Most police agencies that are using social media these days have likely designated one person to do the job, and likely for good reasons such as limited resources, skill level, and interest in the work. But several recent experiences have taught me that to truly be successful it needs to be a team effort. At the very least, the main person in charge of your social media accounts needs someone with whom he or she can bounce around ideas. It bolsters creativity, protects your agency from embarrassment, and provides important backup support in the case of an emergency or when that one person just needs a day off. The first example I give you is a fun one. A citizen tweeted @RichmondPolice asking if they could make a citizen’s arrest of their friend who didn’t like Led Zeppelin or Pink Floyd. We thought we would have a fun exchange and build some good will in the community by responding in a humorous way. I immediately thought of the classic Pink Floyd song “The Wall” and my Pu ...

Read the rest of entry »

Monday, November 18, 2013

Using Video to Communicate with the Public

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Today’s post is the eighth in a series of blog posts highlighting IACP 2013 social media workshops. This post is about the Using Video to Communicate with the Public session on Tuesday, October 22. I’d like to start off this blog by personally thanking the Tampa Police Department for permanently making me think of them every time I hear Carly Rae Jepson’s catchy “Call Me Maybe” song. But that was exactly the whole point of their creative use of video to reach their audience. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check out the amazing video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmBEy1epBio) they put together using an iPad and video editing software. They used their own employees lip-syncing to the popular tune to share their message about the importance of calling police. “This is communication. Music is the universal language,” explains Tampa PD’s Media Relations Director Laura McElroy. McElroy’s presentation with Boca Raton Police&rs ...

Read the rest of entry »

Friday, November 08, 2013

Advice from Chiefs Who Use Social Media

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Today’s post is the fifth in a series of blog posts highlighting IACP 2013 social media workshops. This post is about the Chiefs Who Tweet (or Pin, or Post) workshop on Tuesday, October 22. For Kansas City, Missouri, Police Chief Darryl Forte and Boca Raton, Florida, Police Chief Dan Alexander, it’s a no brainer: police chiefs need to be out there using social media to communicate with the public. “It reaps so many benefits,” Chief Forte said during the IACP conference session. “It’s like going to a City Council or a budget meeting. You’ve got to do it. Not necessarily every day, just when you have something to say.” Chief Forte tweets from his own Twitter account @ChiefForte and posts to a chief’s blog while Chief Alexander tweets from @BocaChief and posts on the Boca Chief’s official Facebook page. Though both may have needed a little technological help from their staff to get their accounts set up initially, they now run them all by t ...

Read the rest of entry »

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Taking Your Message to the Next Level

By Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is a member of the Richmond Police Department's Public Affairs Unit in Richmond, Virginia. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Read Full Bio…

Today’s post is the second in a series of blog posts highlighting IACP 2013 social media workshops. This post is about the Taking Your Message to the Next Level: Advanced Social Media session on Sunday, October 20. Boise, Idaho; Boca Raton, Florida; and Seattle, Washington. These are three very different parts of the country with three very different types of crime, demographics, and police departments and yet they all use different social media platforms with the same goals: to educate, communicate, and interact with their communities. Though their session at the IACP 2013 conference was titled “Taking Your Message to the Next Level: Advanced Social Media,” I think any agency at any level can use these tips. Boise Police Communications Director Lynn Hightower mentioned three different types of social media tools and explained how they could benefit an agency: 1-Twitter alerts. The IACP has written a more detailed post on these, but Lynn explained that every agency should sig ...

Read the rest of entry »

Text/HTML

About This Blog

So you have found, or perhaps stumbled upon, The Social Media Beat, the blog for the IACP Center for Social Media Web site. The Social Media Beat is about three things: social media, law enforcement, and perspective. Here you will find a fresh outlook on the issues that are affecting law enforcement agencies and their personnel when it comes to social media.

Social media is taking the world by storm. Social networks, blogs, photo and video sharing sites, and virtual communities are changing the way people live, work, and play. These tools present unique opportunities as well as challenges to the law enforcement community.  The Social Media Beat brings together a team of bloggers who will speak directly to you about hot topics and current issues.

Bloggers include IACP staff and practitioners in the field who can provide a unique front-line perspective. Our team cares about social media and wants to ensure that law enforcement across the country are knowledgeable and well-equipped to incorporate this technology.

Search this blog

Search

View Posts

By Date

By Author

By Tag

About the Authors

Dionne Waugh

Dionne Waugh is the social media guru for the Richmond Police Department. As a member of the Department's Public Affairs Unit since September 2008, she created and developed the agency's successful use of social media and continues to try and find new ways to improve the way Richmond Police communicate online. She has spoken about law enforcement and social media at more than a dozen conferences across the country in addition to the past four IACP annual conferences. Waugh is a former newspaper reporter who wrote about crime, police, and the court system for six years. That experience and an ingrained curiosity for what makes people tick has fueled her desire to improve communication between people. Follow Dionne on Twitter @RichmondPolice.

Created by Matrix Group International, Inc.