City public information officer offers social media insight

Ben+Remmert%2C+social+media+marketing+specialist%2C+and+Eric+Crosslin%2C+public+information+for+the+City+of+Wichita+Falls%2C+discuss+social+media+from+a+government+perspective+at+the+third+MSU+Texas+Social+Media+Day%2C+Oct.+1%2C+2018.+
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City public information officer offers social media insight

Ben Remmert, social media marketing specialist, and Eric Crosslin, public information for the City of Wichita Falls, discuss social media from a government perspective at the third MSU Texas Social Media Day, Oct. 1, 2018.

Ben Remmert, social media marketing specialist, and Eric Crosslin, public information for the City of Wichita Falls, discuss social media from a government perspective at the third MSU Texas Social Media Day, Oct. 1, 2018.

Bradley Wilson

Ben Remmert, social media marketing specialist, and Eric Crosslin, public information for the City of Wichita Falls, discuss social media from a government perspective at the third MSU Texas Social Media Day, Oct. 1, 2018.

Bradley Wilson

Bradley Wilson

Ben Remmert, social media marketing specialist, and Eric Crosslin, public information for the City of Wichita Falls, discuss social media from a government perspective at the third MSU Texas Social Media Day, Oct. 1, 2018.

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Bradley Wilson
Ben Remmert, social media marketing specialist, and Eric Crosslin, public information for the City of Wichita Falls, discuss social media from a government perspective at the third MSU Texas Social Media Day, Oct. 1, 2018.

The public information officer of Wichita Falls shared how the use of social media helps to inform the public and influences their perception of the local government on Oct. 1 during the second session of Social Media Day.

Public Information Officer Eric Crosslin said his job feels similar to being a cheerleader in that his team is all about promoting the city.

Timeliness in this line of work is critical as the public tends to quickly lose interest in stories. People look to the city to notify them of recent events.

“We try to get two or three things out each day,” Crosslin said. “We don’t want to overwhelm [the public, but] we like to be the first to put things out.”

Social Media Marketing Specialist Benjamin Remmert said marketing is not a science and creativity is the key. He often draws inspiration from watching ads online and seeing how others market their content.

“We have creative leeway [with our job],” Remmert said. “Part of our strategic goal is working with others. We do our own thing but also try to amplify our message.”

According to Crosslin, the public likes to engage with content that is authentic and something that they can relate to. The city’s media feed tends to receive more views on things that they spend less time planning.

“Content has to be good or no one will care,” Crosslin said. “We always [try to] at least have a picture or a video.”

Marketing is knowing the audience and how to differentiate from other potential sources. Remmert said for their audience, they like to upload promotional videos, no longer than 2 minutes, for events.

“No one will watch an hour-long video,” Remmert said.

Social media platforms offer various ways for a sender to transmit a message. Facebook allows users to post messages via text or even a live video.

“We don’t get any [extra] views from going live,” Crosslin said. “We tried, but we found that we have audio issues. If we don’t have good bandwidth, it’s recorded bad.”

The city marketers consistently have a steady flow of content to share and find enjoyment in enhancing that content to make it seem more significant. Crosslin said simply gaining new followers who will see their feed justifies their posting of content.

“I always use the term ‘juicy.’ How can I juice it up?” Crosslin said. “Sometimes [our goal is just] to see if we can do something to get more followers, likes or whatever.”

Attendees found this session to be helpful in providing tips about how to maintain and please their online followers.

Casey Haire, Wichita Falls High School junior, said, “I learned that short videos do better than long videos if they’re drawn out. I use Instagram because of memes.”

Hunter Edwards, Harrold High School senior, said, “Social media is important to get news and information. I use YouTube because it’s easier to follow.”

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