Post by: Kim Stephens
Yesterday (March 26) I had the amazing honor of sitting on a panel at the National Emergency Managers Association with some of the most talented and creative emergency managers in the country, particularly with regard to their use and application of social media: Cheryl Bledsoe (@Cherylble), Greg Licamale (@G_r_e_g) Jeff Phillips (@JSPhillips), James Hamilton (disaster_guy), Chris Thompson (@redcrossmom), Brian Crumpler (@emgis), Rob Dudgeon (@sfDEMrob).
For my small contribution to that esteemed panel, I talked about how to creatively provide disaster preparedness information to the public via social media. My talk was based, in part, on this post. A tweet today led me to another example of agencies doing great work in this area. The Greater Kansas City Region’s Metropolitan Emergency Managers Committee (MEMC) has developed three YouTube videos that look and feel little like the Mac/PC commercials. They even have nice catchy music in the background. A big guy is “Mr. Disaster,” and he’s up to no-good. Another reasonable guy walks citizens through easy steps they can take to prepare for Mr. Disaster should he come their way.
The use of YouTube here, is important. YouTube allows for videos to be shared easily on a multitude of platform: blogs, facebook, twitter, and google +. The MEMC have embedded the video on their own webpage, and as you can see, I’ve posted the video to this blog post. This ease of sharing can only allow for more eyes to see the content and therefore, hopefully, increase public engagement and preparedness.
Is your agency creating this kind of message for YouTube? It would be fun to have a repository for those videos. Maybe the Emergency 2.0 wiki would be a good place for that.