Saving Money Using Social Media
As I'm writing this, people are opening their pay checks and feeling sick. It's not bad enough that everything is costing more but the government took a big bite out of your bring home. We avoided the cliff for now but I have a feeling it won't be long and we will be looking at it once again. Unless we all figure out how to save money. Saving Money using Social Media is something business have been doing for a while. I think the heads of governments can try to live like the rest of us and get creative about saving.
Just like businesses have been doing over the past few years, governments of all sizes, from the federal government on down, have got to figure out how to save money. And I'm here to tell you that one of the tools that might help them save money but improve their customer service is, you guessed it, social media!
If used well, social media has the possibility for saving local governments both time and money as they provide services to the public. And while those aren't the only reasons to use social media in government offices, they're pretty darn good right about now, wouldn't you say?
3 Ways Social Media Can Save Governments (and Businesses!) Money in 2013
Any mailings such as newsletters, parks and recreation department schedules, etc., that go out regularly to all residents could be offered in digital format. This saves postage, not to mention the costs associated with printing brochures and newsletters, and the staffing costs of getting the things mailed out.
2. Who Needs a Call Center?
By using Facebook and Twitter to receive and respond to citizen inquiries, the costs associated with a complex phone system requiring multiple inbound lines, not to mention the additional people needed to answer phones, could be avoided. And, an added bonus – interaction among citizens just might mean that their questions are answered correctly by their fellow residents, also decreasing staffing needs. Also – since most people are more likely to remember information in written form rather than when it's given out verbally over the phone, sending a link to provide an answer actually gives more information than a simple phone call might.
3. Boost Local Tourism!
Just like brands can boost sales by providing pretty pictures on, say, Facebook or Pinterest, local governments can use similar social media savvy strategies to encourage people to visit. Encourage interaction by residents by having them post pictures of their favorite recreation spots in your city or include quirky or fun facts about your city or town in quote graphics (one of the most shared kinds of content online).
No matter what 2013 brings from a budget perspective, it's definitely a great time to cash in on social media's ability to help you market more efficiently for less money!
Does your local government use social media? What's the best use you've seen? Leave a comment below!
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