Engage your followers with shareable content

We assembled the following pointers to help you get the most out of your social media accounts. 

Best Practices

(adapted from Vanderbilt University and other sources)

The following best practices have been developed to provide basic guidance on how best to use social media to meet communication and engagement goals, both as an owner of an account and as a user or contributor on behalf of a department or program. As social media changes, these guidelines may be updated.

Be Respectful

As a member of the JCC community, it is vital that you engage in thoughtful and respectful dialogue that promotes freedom of speech and sensitivity to and respect for the rights of others. Anything you post reflects on the college. Be professional and do not engage in arguments or debates with others.

Be Attentive

Follow online conversations closely to help maintain a clear and current understanding of what is relevant and of interest to your community.

Be Active

A successful social media presence requires time and effort. If you cannot check into your account at least a few minutes each day and post fresh and compelling content several times a week, you may reconsider jumping into social media.

Be Timely

Timeliness is one of the key chief expectations for social media audiences. Be prepared to move quickly in response to new developments, announcements or emergencies with relevant information.

Be Careful

Remember that anything you share within social media, even within a closed network, is not private. It can be shared, stored and spread globally. Do not post confidential information or proprietary information about the college; content that violates state or federal law; and information or images that are obscene, untrue or defamatory.

Be Accurate

Make sure information is factual and accurate before sharing. If erroneous information is shared, let it be known to your audience and correct it. Also review content for grammatical and spelling errors before posting.

Be Interactive

As a consumer and producer of social media, offer comments on interesting posts and share the good work of others at JCC. Be responsive to questions and concerns raised by users. If you see a post you think may benefit or require an official JCC response, please contact the Marketing and Community Relations staff at 716.338.1048.

Accept and Monitor Comments

Be prepared to accept and monitor comments. Not all comments will be positive. Respond to such comments professionally and by providing additional information that may help resolve the issue. Remove comments containing vulgar language, those that attack any one group or individual and those that are obviously spam. Refer to JCC’s social media comment policy for more information.

Contribute Valuable Information

Make sure posts add to the community or topic. Don’t just talk about your program or department – share good news from around the college, as well as interesting content from trusted sources outside of the college.

Separate Personal from Professional

Content that is appropriate and of interest to your personal friends is most likely not appropriate for your department social followers. Keep these two presences separate by keeping content irrelevant to JCC and its community on your personal page.

Promote Your Accounts

Make it easy for people to find you on social media. Include your account(s) on everything you send out (flyers, postcards, calendars, posters, e-mails). Make sure you are listed on the official JCC social media directory and make sure you have completed all steps necessary to manage an official JCC social media account. Contact the Marketing and Community Relations staff at 716.338.1048 for more information.

Measure Effectiveness

Utilize Facebook Insights, Twitter Analytics, Hootsuite, Icono Square and other tools to gain a better understanding of your account’s effectiveness. These tools will help you better engage your audience by telling you what content works best at what times and days.

Get necessary approval

Before starting a social media site for your department or unit, seek approval from a supervisor or director. Only authorized JCC employees may be a content owner or administrator for college social media accounts. Contact the Marketing and Community Relations staff at 716.338.1048 for guidelines on creating an official JCC social media account

What to post

Engage your followers with shareable content

So what should you post on your social media account? The simple answer is shareable content that engages your audience regularly.

While social media is a valuable platform to promote various campus events and happenings, only about 20% of your posts should be promotional in nature. The reality is that people use social media to be rewarded, entertained, and to connect with people, places, and things they deem worthy of their time.

So what should you post?

  • Social media users love photos and videos – particularly those for which they feel a connection. Photo albums and videos of students, faculty, staff, and of campus in general are by far our most popular social media posts. Content that includes compelling imagery is sure to make your posts stand out.
  • Posts that offer benefits are always a hit. Sharing tidbits of news from your department, an interesting behind-the-scenes photo, or early access and deals for event tickets can go a long way in grabbing your audience’s attention.
  • You may not have time everyday to produce engaging content. Have no fear. Instead, share links to relevant tips, advice, self-help, and news articles. If final exams, for example, are approaching, consider sharing a “5 ways to ace your finals” article or something similar. Feel free to repurpose others’ content to work for you. Just make sure to credit the source.
  • Use holidays and other key dates throughout the year as reasons to engage your audience. It seems like every other day is National Doughnut Day or National Pet Day or National (fill in the blank) Day. Use National Teachers Day, for instance, to share good news (and a photo) of a worthy faculty member.
  • Ask a question with the idea of building a conversation and soliciting meaningful responses. Ask your followers their opinion on a particular hot topic related to your field, or to leave a comment on their memory of an upcoming annual event your hosting. Just make sure you’re willing and have the time to interact with replies.
  • Capitalize on trending topics or news relative to your page or account.
  • Be conversational and relatable to your audience. Try to avoid marketing lingo, jargon, and acronyms.
Dos & Don'ts of Social Media

We encourage you to engage in social media for personal and professional purposes. While JCC does not have a written policy governing personal social media use, be aware that you can be held responsible for everything you post online – even if you are at home on your own time.

Remember that complete privacy does not exist in social media. Public posts are indexed in search engines, and private comments can be forwarded or copied and easily made available to the public.

Use the following as a guide to help you navigate personal and professional social media use.


  1. DO respect others opinions. Be careful discussing touchy subjects, such as politics and religion.  Be courteous and remove yourself from the conversation when appropriate.
  2. DO use common sense and your best judgment.
  3. DO maintain separate accounts for personal and professional use, when possible.
  4. DO get appropriate permission before you refer to or post images of current or former employees, students, alumni, vendors and suppliers.
  5. DO think before you hit the post button. Pause and reread. If you wouldn't’t want a particular thought forever associated with your name, don’t post it.
  6. DO show principles of integrity, professionalism and privacy.
  7. DO make sure that what you’re saying is factually correct, and also that it doesn't’t violate any legal guidelines.
  8. DO use privacy settings to restrict personal information on public accounts, but be aware of the limited protection this provides. What you post on your personal page, no matter what the privacy settings, may be seen by anybody at any time.
  9. DO share, like and comment on posts from Jamestown Community College accounts that you find helpful, informative, entertaining, and enjoyable.
  10. DO keep in mind your affiliation to Jamestown Community College and how others may interpret your social media postings. Clearly brand your posts as personal and purely your own.
  11.  DO bring grievances to your supervisor before taking to social media.


  1. DO NOT post or share commentary, content, or images that are defamatory, pornographic, proprietary, harassing, libelous, or that can create a hostile work environment.
  2. DO NOT disclose information that is financial, operational and legal in nature, as well as any information that pertains to students, fellow employees, clients, and customers.
  3. DO NOT respond to an offensive or negative post by a student, customer, client, or colleague. Report it to your supervisor, if necessary.
  4. DO NOT engage in any illegal activity.
  5. DO NOT modify or use the JCC logo for personal endorsements.
  6. DO NOT post without proofreading your text carefully.
  7. DO NOT forget that what may be funny to you might not be for others.
  8. DO NOT log on to personal social media accounts for more than a few minutes at a time during work hours.