Facebook Gives Congress Summer Homework

By David Cohen 

Does anyone remember having to write “What I Did on My Summer Vacation” essays early in the school year? Facebook is turning the tables on members of Congress, offering them a checklist of what they should be doing on the social network during the summer.

Facebook introduced the checklist with the following post on its Facebook Washington DC page:

Congressional offices: Take a look at our checklist for creative ways to engage with your constituents via Facebook this summer!

And here is Facebook’s checklist:

  • Parades: Include your Facebook page URL on the signs, cars, or floats in your area’s parades. On the signs, ask people to like your page.
  • Parade handouts: Put your Facebook Page URL on any of the brochures or handouts you distribute at the parade.
  • Photos: If people are taking photos at any of your summer events, encourage them to share the photos on Facebook and tag your page.
  • Events: Use Facebook events to let your constituents know which parades, town halls, and other local summer events you’ll be attending.
  • Town hall questions: Ask your fans to submit potential town hall questions to your Facebook page and have them vote on their favorites. Let fans know that you plan to answer the most popular questions at area town halls this summer.
  • Town hall live-stream video: Live-stream or record your town halls so you can share them on Facebook. That way, those who can’t attend in person can watch online.
  • Best summer spots in district: Use Facebook questions to ask your fans to share their favorite summer spots in your area. You can contribute, too.
  • Summer reading: Use Facebook questions to ask your fans their favorite summer reads.
  • Share recipes: If you like to cook or barbecue, share a favorite recipe on your Facebook page. Ask your fans to share their favorites, too.
  • Favorite July 4th memories: During Fourth of July weekend, share your favorite Independence Day memory. Ask fans to share theirs in the comments.
  • Tips for staying cool: As the mercury rises, regularly remind your fans how they can stay cool this summer, especially in extreme heat. Let them know how you’re trying to beat the heat, too.
  • Severe weather safety tips: Summer often brings severe weather. Share tips on what to do during bad thunderstorms, flooding, hurricanes, tornadoes, wild fires, or heat waves. Link to other official government Facebook pages as resources.
  • Disaster relief: If your area is hit by a natural disaster, keep your Facebook fans updated with emergency information. Consider adding a separate tab on your page for links like the local Red Cross or other relief organizations in your area.
  • Integrate Facebook into your website: During August recess, evaluate your website and consider integrating more Facebook plugins. Learn more about plugins here.

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.