Government Agencies Get Real, Funny, and Human on Social Media [Examples]

Developing authorities company content material (or any “boring” or “red-tape” trade) to interact, entertain, and nonetheless talk your message presents challenges.

Bland, bureaucratic content material causes individuals to maintain scrolling or have their eyes glazed over. Fortunately, some native, state, and federal businesses have discovered an antidote, creatively connecting with their constituents by humanizing their content material.

Bland, bureaucratic #content causes people’s eyes to glaze over. But these three agencies have found a creative antidote, says @DawnPapandrea via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Look at three public businesses that preserve their content material recent and entertaining whereas sharing essential public service updates.

Local Agency: Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District

A public utility with a cult-like social media following may sound loopy, however the Northeast Ohio Sewer District is proof. The company treats 90 billion gallons of wastewater and stormwater from 62 communities – and tweets like a content material boss.

A current thread put images of actor Pedro Pascal alongside a corresponding image of an NEORSD job and garnered over 56,000 views. Other tweets convey potty puns (flushable wipes – which can be the bain of a sewer therapy group – are a favourite goal), popular culture, and cool worker profiles to construct rapport with audiences.

Pedro Pascal as @neorsd jobs 🧵

— NE Ohio Regional Sewer District (@neorsd) April 7, 2023

That creativity and willingness to interact outdoors the conventional utility content material convey a human facet that permits the district to attach uniquely with prospects and others throughout the nation, says John Gonzalez, communications supervisor for Northeast Ohio Sewer District.

NEORSD is energetic on other social platforms, and its podcast Clean Water Works, which began in September 2022, is gaining traction.

John credit workers throughout the group for sharing artistic content material concepts. “The number of employees who have content to share – whether it is photos from the field or suggestions for content or a space where we can record a video and bring them into it – that support goes a long way. And it comes from the relationships that we’ve built internally,” he says. “Most of our (audience) growth in the recent years was because we began to move into more of the personal reality side of our work.”

John and his crew additionally work to be within the second, be responsive, and go the place the developments lead them. “We like to create content that will make people think. We want them to pay attention to our work and be able to trust us to know when they have a question. We’re going to give them an answer,” he says.

A humorousness, humility, and humanity works properly on any platform. As John explains: “I’ve had people say that they have applied for jobs at the district because of something they saw on our Twitter account … It reflected something about the organization that they wanted to be a part of. When I hear those things, it [shows] that those human connections go a long way. And you can’t put that into a tweet metric.”

Cool content material second

On Dec. 29, 2021, NEORSD tweeted a phone number inviting followers to name and obtain a private message from the sewer district and to depart their very own messages. About 900 responded.

Over 900 people left voicemail messages when @NEORSD asked them to call to receive a personal message, says @DawnPapandrea via John Gonzalez @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

this yr has been loopy.

perhaps we’ve been a supply of wit and knowledge, levity and brevity.

we’re proud to serve you, both treating or tweeting.

we now have a particular message for you and would love to listen to your voices to finish this yr.

simply name 216-361-6772 and hear.

— NE Ohio Regional Sewer District (@neorsd) December 29, 2021

“It was humbling to realize that there was a real connection we had made with people just by being honest, by thanking them for giving us their time. The sense of personal connection that they felt with our account and the emotion – there were literally people crying in the voicemail messages – just shocked me,” John says.

State company: California Volunteers, Office of the Governor

California Volunteers goals to interact state residents and encourage them to take part in service alternatives. Communications director Katie Vavao says social media content material drives model consciousness, serving to them to extend their volunteer drive that’s already bigger than the Peace Corps.

“Seeing different faces, speaking different languages, doing a variety of community work is what makes our stories so compelling,” Katie says. “By uplifting their stories, we hope to inspire others.”

California Volunteers’ best-performing content material is often short-form movies like YouTube Shorts and Instagram Reels, corresponding to this California Climate Action Corps recruitment video.

Recently, the group discovered new audiences on LinkedIn and TikTok. “It can sometimes be a challenge to break through and get those viral moments, but posting fun, visual content has been key,” Katie says.

With only one videographer and two social media employees, they rely on user-generated content material. “We receive photos/videos from volunteers and service members uploaded through our website. Our hope is to have thousands of content creators working all over the state to share their stories about service and volunteerism,” Katie says.

@CalVolunteers relies on its volunteers and service members to create user-generated content to use across its social channels, says @DawnPapandrea via @katievavao @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

They use the hashtag #CaliforniansForAll throughout platforms to permit for consistency wherever individuals have interaction.

Cool content material second

A easy TikTok promoting the College Corps fellows program, which gives a university stipend for college kids doing significant work, garnered over 333,000 views. It’s a 46-second walkthrough of the applying course of, however with the precise audience (TikTook), it had a big effect.

@californiavolunteers Build Skills Help Others Earn Money If you need assistance paying on your training whereas doing significant work, the #CaliforniansForAll ♬ Aesthetic – Tollan Kim

Federal: National Weather Service security crew

“A good metaphor for our challenge in garnering the public’s attention is this: Weather safety and preparedness are like broccoli. People know it’s good for you, but they don’t want to eat it. It is our job to make weather safety and preparedness appetizing,” says Douglas Hilderbrand, preparedness and resilience program lead on the National Weather Service.

The seven-person NWS security crew shares nationwide security and consciousness supplies to save lots of lives and property. It’s all about connecting a climate forecast to an anticipated affect and capturing how climate impacts everybody each day.

“Because our mission is tied to the human element, it is important that our social media outreach reflects that,” Douglas says. “Success is most tied to connecting with our audience, driving action (whether that be preparedness, learning, or interest in partnerships), and building trust.”

@NWS success is most tied to connecting with our audience, driving action, and building trust, says @dcweatherbrand via @DawnPapandrea @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

The NWS security crew does that with sprinkles of humor, irony, and enjoyable, so their viewers appreciates the essential underlying messages. “If more people follow us because they get entertained once in a while, they will view our posts when the topic is much more serious,” Douglas says.

Happy #PiDay! This yr we left it to our software program builders to assist us have a good time. They got here up with making all the forecast temperatures on our forecast pages, multiples of π.

Anyways… get pleasure from:

— National Weather Service (@NWS) March 14, 2023

Because their content material’s affect can save lives, clearly speaking the message in a approach individuals will recognize is essential. They partnered with the Federal Emergency Management Association, Auburn University, Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, and others to create this infographic for twister warnings. It divides the choices for the place individuals shelter into containers labeled worst, dangerous, good, and greatest. The record ranges from cell houses and autos (worst) to gymnasiums (dangerous) and basements (good) to twister storm shelters (greatest).

Douglas says it has turn into the “gold standard for communicating tornado sheltering” on social media and conventional media.

Cool content material second

In April, NWS created #SafePlaceSelfie Day. It inspired the general public to take a photograph of themselves in a spot the place they might be secure throughout an excessive climate occasion. Meteorologists, native climate bureaus, schools, and individuals participated.

Hey, the place would you go to take shelter throughout extreme climate? Today meteorologists are encouraging everybody to take a while to establish their secure place and to submit a “selfie” photograph from that location utilizing the hashtag #SafePlaceSelfie

— Brooke Brighton (@BrookeBrighton) April 5, 2023

“By making one preparedness action fun, we hope it motivates people to take other preparedness steps,” Douglas says.

Translating messages into content material individuals will devour

Content groups at authorities businesses should typically work a bit more durable than B2C manufacturers to get buy-in from their bosses to publish content material that actual individuals will devour. But those that get the OK (and you need to use the anecdotes to assist your case) will discover human-focused content material can ship higher outcomes.

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Cover picture by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute