I've been tasked with helping to fulfil our young people's requests that we "get on Facebook", and was wondering if anyone already using the site to connect with young people had any advice or success stories they'd be willing to share which could help when it comes to the inevitable job of putting a business case together to be allowed to do this.
Just to give a bit of background info:
I work in the Youth Information Team in Wigan Borough. Our work primarily involves getting information to young people in the area on positive activities and useful services and to provide advice on issues relevent to our audience.
We do this through a number of ways, including printed materials, a quarterly magazine (The LINC) which is direct-mailed to around 30,000 young people and a website (The LINC Online) which recieves around 100,000 page views per month.
My main role is around the development of the website and I've found myself taking a lead on social media and what some describe as 'new technology' (I'm loathe to use this term myself for various reasons).
We've had the 'you should get on Facebook' thing mentioned to us by both professionals working directly with young peope, and young people themselves on numerous occasions over the last three years. Before that it was Myspace, and we flat out told that we couldn't do it, though I think this may have something to do with us not being prepared enough.
Last year, we conducted a market research exercise that we do every two years with as many young people as we can reach through our magazine, website and several focus groups.
One of the things that came out of this research was that a vast majority of young people want to recieve information from us via Facebook, and this is something we can't ignore.
I'm currently busy helping to get a business case together that we can present to those at the top, doing lots of research and putting together a Cybersafety minisite that we can include within our site, partly because I feel information like this is always valuable to young people, and partly because it will go someway to proving that we are aware of our responsibilities when it comes to social media.
As part of all this, I was wondering if anyone had any examples of:
* How Facebook has helped your work.
* What obstacles you may have faced in setting one up and if/how you overcame them.
* If you encountered anything (either positive or negative) whilst using Facebook that you hadn't thought about when setting it up.
If you have anything to share regarding the above, or even if you just have some advice in general it would be very much appreciated.
Also, apologies for typing an essay!