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Police in Jersey to use social media to engage with the public

Graeme Parton

A police chief in Jersey has revealed how his force plans to take to social media sites to form a stronger relationship with the community in 2013.

Mike Bowron claims that this will be the year the force utilises and benefits from sites like Twitter and Facebook. He said:

“We can engage with more islanders than usual through Facebook and Twitter. For example, social media was great when we had the gas place fire and the adverse weather. We want to reduce crime and maintain the momentum at the same time.”

Similar strategies have sprung up across the UK as a growing number of forces see the benefits of having a common ground on which to meet the communities they serve. Social media profiles can break the barriers down between official organisations and the general public; providing a personal touch to a very serious cause. This can also be the case for businesses.

When used correctly and intelligently, businesses can utilise social media to reach their target audiences in an effective and cost-efficient way. While it is important to meet consumers on their level with engaging content, it is equally important that the brand is portrayed in a professional manner with high quality, accurate information. A lack of professionalism can easily put potential customers off; grammatical errors, for example, can be costly mistakes to make.

As many high-profile cases have gone to show, spelling mistakes can cause major embarrassment for those responsible. On top of embarrassment, however, such errors can damage consumer confidence. It is for this reason that many large corporations choose to outsource their online content to professional copywriting services.

The content businesses present must also be of interest to the consumer. It’s important that websites remain current. A regularly updated news blog is one way in which many choose to keep up. If a user sees that a site hasn’t been updated for months, they’re likely to move elsewhere to find what they’re looking for. Topical stories are extremely useful when it comes to ensuring this doesn’t happen.

The way in which police forces have begun to use the Internet to connect with the communities can be emulated by businesses with great results providing content is engaging, accurate and professional.

Graeme has experience creating content for online sources and for the radio, and at university he studied Multimedia Journalism.

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