Social media guidelines

The following statement was passed by the Council of Mill Woods United Church (MWUC) on May 23, 2021.

The MWUC Social Media Guidelines are designed to lay out objectives and goals for MWUC’s use of social media, and establish guidelines for posting content, and roles and responsibilities and timelines for putting information on MWUC’s social media accounts.

Objectives

  • Engage with and encourage new members to join our community. A vibrant community includes:
    • individuals or families, with or without children; and
    • all ages, gender, race, sexual and gender orientation, ability or faith background
  • Develop social media content that:
    • reaches multiple audiences
    • promotes social outreach (clothing bank, bread run, food bank, etc.)
    • promotes the many ministries of MWUC (prayer shawl, Heavenly Hospitality, stitching connection, affirm team, etc.)
    • promotes special events (craft fairs, social events, Pride parades, truth and reconciliation, Inner City Pastoral Ministry, etc.)
    • engages users with interactive tools (surveys, prayer requests, good news, etc.)
  • Maintain and enhance communication with existing congregation members in meaningful and fun ways
  • Maintain a website that provides information in a clearly laid out manner and is easy to navigate.
  • Promote social outreach programs within our community
  • Advertise special events within our community or that are meaningful to it

Goals

  • Sustain existing membership once government restrictions are lifted re COVID
  • Post information on MWUC social medial accounts at least two times per week
  • Regularly livestream Sunday worship services via Facebook, and post videos on the MWUC website for viewing by those not on Facebook
  • Have an increase in engagement with social media followers, such as ‘likes’ and comments on posts.

Guidelines

  1. Social media use should be restricted to platforms that support our goals. At present Facebook and Instagram are designed for engagement and sharing information. MWUC should focus its efforts on these platforms.
  2. The Church Administrator is primarily responsible for maintaining MWUC’s website and managing posts to MWUC’s social media platforms. The Administrator will also be responsible for managing responses to social media accounts and directing the information to the relevant staff or council members, as needed.
    a. As an example, if Prayer Requests are solicited via Instagram, then each week the administrator should gather the requests and pass them to the Minister for follow up and inclusion in Sunday Worship, as appropriate.
  3. Other designated members of MWUC (in consultation with the Church Administrator) can post to social media or the church website, however posts should be limited to specific items:
    a. Videographers and the Minister to post livestream services and other relevant information related to Sunday services to the MWUC Facebook page
    b. The Minister or Church Administrator will post videos of livestream services to the MWUC website, along with other relevant information from Sunday services.
    c. Posts to the MWUC Instagram page can be done by designates of the Church Administrator.
  4. Privacy
    a. Other than livestream services, posts to social media accounts should not include pictures of individuals that are easily identifiable unless permission to post their picture is obtained beforehand
  5. Posts to MWUC social media accounts, and information on the website should use consistent images that are synonymous with MWUC – i.e. Join In, Reach Out, Make a Difference
  6. The Church Administrator will engage with 3 or 4 members of the congregation 2 to 3 times per year to determine the majority of content to be posted on MWUC social media accounts. (See 21 Social Media Post ideas for Churches, attached as reference). These discussions will help:
    a. Plan, create, and schedule content that can then be posted to social media by the Church Administrator
    b. Identify keywords and topics that can be added to posts
    c. Identify information that can be linked back to the MWUC website for additional context