Here are some things to consider before you start a social media account.

Tap Into Existing University Resources
Before you start an account, consider leveraging the resources that are already available. If your target audience is students, contact Student Services and see if you can get your messages pushed out onto the existing social media accounts targeted to students.  Not only will you get your message out to tens of thousands of followers, but you don’t have to put the time and effort into managing the account.

In addition, many Faculties have a Communications Officer. Your department may have one or more web administrators who manage the content on your departmental website.

Use your existing website
If you’re looking to start a blog, consider blogging on your departmental website.  This site can be configured to display all of your posts on a contained page.  If this is something you’d like to do, contact your departmental administrator to get started.

Secure the support of your department head or manager
If you decide that starting a social media account is right for your department, you’re going to need support.  A social media presence is a commitment. It might be difficult to maintain your site if your own department isn’t behind the idea. Sit down and discuss how, as a group, you think a social media presence, or similarly, a lack of one, could benefit or hinder your department.

Remember: an unattended social media presence can do more damage than good.