This editor ensures we’re always thinking about and communicating with our audiences.
- Post published stories to our social platforms
- Reply to and engage with audience on social media
- Set up and implement community engagement opportunities
- Retweet Signal reporters and/or craft new posts in breaking news situations
- Retweet Signal reporters who are live tweeting in news situations
- Create visually focused posts to give audiences a sense of who we are/what we do
- Prepare our weekly week-in-review news quiz
- Review and assess social metrics
- Your shift is 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., with an hour for lunch. If there are two engagement editors for the week we will have a morning shift (7-2) and an afternoon shift (2-9). Both editors will collaborate and work as a team.
- Meet with the Desk workshop instructor and the other Desk editors after the morning meeting, sometime between 10 a.m. and 12 p.m., to discuss the stories of the day. The exact time will vary depending on how long the story meeting takes.
- Your work week runs Monday through Sunday, though it’s not as busy on the weekend and you can do this from home. Usually your job ends Sunday at 5 p.m. AT when you send Terra a handover note for the next engagement editor.
In a Word doc of about one page, include the following:
- Make a note of anything you feel the next engagement editor needs to know to prepare for the job. This may include observations about what worked or didn’t, and possible suggestions. Don’t copy and paste the list of duties.
- Find five examples of social engagement by other media that you think are good ideas we may want to try. This could be any social post/thread/video/quiz/etc. from any media outlet, but focus on our three platforms (Twitter, FB and Instagram). Include a brief explanation of why you picked each one. Don’t include examples from previous engagement editors.
- Send the handover note to the Desk instructor (Terra) by 5 p.m. Sunday AT.
- You need a Facebook account in order to do this job. Send the Desk instructor the email address you use for FB and you’ll be added to the Signal account as an editor. Your personal account/name won’t appear when you post as The Signal.
- The desk team — you, instructor, assignment editor and production editor — communicate using Facebook Messenger, outside of weekday office hours.
- Check the blackboard in Lab 3 a few times a day for updates and what’s to come. Also check the website several times a day.
This position consists of three sub-roles:
- Approve (or not) comments awaiting moderation each day. These are listed on the main Dashboard page after log in. Moderating comments can be tricky. We must abide by the School’s commenting policy. We should take care to allow a full conversation — even if we don’t like the tone or language. We should approve comments that criticize us — even (especially?) if we disagree with them. We should reject comments that are offensive or libelous. Approve only those that are not spam. Examples of spam:
- “I love the content of your website”
- “Would you link back to my site?”
- “Your website is running slow”
Community engagement co-ordinator:
- Look for particular audiences or groups to target with our stories and mention/tag
- Set up and implement opportunities for community engagement online and in the real world
Social media editor:
Enter only original stories authored by our reporters. Keep it lively. Also, build engagement by replying to mentions and sharing (positive) comments. Some options:
- Write in casual language
- Don’t just insert the story page headline. Instead, use the social headline on the Signal front page. Or find the “nugget of social” in the story:
- A surprising fact
- A vivid quote that humanizes the story
- An issue or challenge that is likely to resonate with the audience
- Tag people mentioned in the story
- Issue a call to action. Ask users for their reaction to the story. “Would you use this service?” “Have you experienced this issue?”
In addition to sharing our own stories, you may post photos and short videos of Signal reporters doing their jobs. This “behind the scenes” content is a good way to show people what we do.
- Look at the CBC Nova Scotia FB account for a sense of what ours should look like.
- Tag public figures and organizations. This is an important factor in getting your post into the feeds of people who already Like this person or page.
- Craft a new summary so you’re not simply repeating the social headline.
- Paste the story URL into a status update to fetch the headline and image … then delete the URL. Posts should look like this:
See also: Updating the Facebook Cache when you change the image that is shared.
Read over the post before you publish to make sure the headline conforms to Facebook’s best practices. No click bait!
- Look at the Global Halifax account for an example of what ours should look like.
- Follow relevant accounts, particularly our reporters.
- Craft a new summary so you’re not simply retweeting the social headline.
- Repost the story twice — at different times in the day — to make sure our audience sees it. You may schedule posts using Hootsuite. Mix up the wording too.
- Include a couple of hashtags and/or Twitter accounts, where appropriate, to broaden the audience (e.g. @HfxRegPolice, #nspoli).
- Use emoji but make sure the tone suits the story (i.e. the lighter the story, the more room you have for play and creativity).
- Retweet and/or Like other users who mention @signalhfx favourably
- Retweet our reporters if they’re doing something journalism related
- Consider creating a poll
- Consider creating a thread like this example from ProPublica
- Consider adding a short video like this example from Kate McKenna
- The text and photo should work together like in this example
- Posts should have a big image (2:1 aspect ratio) like this
— The Signal (@signalhfx) October 1, 2015
- Post a strong photo or short video and include a short explanation/summary. Look at the Globe and Mail’s Instagram account for examples. Instagram is about visuals, so don’t post every Signal story.
- Include a few hashtags, where appropriate, to broaden the audience (e.g. #halifax)
- Tag people, such as reporters or photographers and people mentioned in the story
- Add a location (unless the story is particularly sensitive)
- Use emoji but make sure the tone suits the image/story
Last Updated: January 8, 2019, 8:38 pm AST