Purpose of Practice

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) is using social media Web sites to: • Enhance relationships with its stakeholders • Increase the agency’s transparency, earning more trust with stakeholders • Engage a younger, tech-savvy demographic of stakeholders • Reach online communities • Improve two-way communication with OLCC constituents • Gather feedback on OLCC issues • Discover and correct misinformation circulating about OLCC

Description of Practice

Since 2008, OLCC has been adding social media Internet Websites to its public affairs program. OLCC has been a trailblazer in Oregon state government in this area. Social media has provided the platform for OLCC to communicate a wide range of topics that traditional media (TV, radio, newspaper) would not consider "newsworthy." OLCC can communicate important messages -- in real time -- with an expanded audience, through social media. OLCC uses each site to promote and link with the other sites. (See Attached Chart)

Success or Improvements

The "Celebrate Safely" public service announcements OLCC posted on its YouTube page were the most popular. OLCC reinforced those messages with a Blogspot post, frequent tweets on Twitter, and prominent placement on the OLCC homepage. Some blog posts that have received a lot of comments are "Can I see your ID, please?" "Can't find a particular product at your liquor store?" and "Self-serve alcohol not allowed under Oregon statute." Social media use is emerging as a new norm among public relations practices. Social media is no longer an area that organizations can afford overlook. Social media provides another avenue for transparency and creates opportunities for participation, feedback and collaboration with the public. It provides accountability and visibility for the agency, and helps OLCC improve the way it does business. Social media also helps OLCC to share best practices with other liquor control agencies around the country. The Obama administration is committed to social media and even has developed a "New Media Department." This is an area that requires very little investment of software and hardware, but can reap the benefits in information and education if the proper attention is given.

Evaluation of the Practice

OLCC monitors traffic on its social media sites, to ensure they are effective and, therefore, being increasingly used by constituents. OLCC uses Google Alerts, Google Analytics, Blog Comments/Feedback and Twitter Search to monitor traffic. Social Media - Site Statistics as of February, 2010 Twitter - OLCC has put out 150 tweets has 330 followers Blogspot - 530 profile views YouTube - 3,900 upload views, 1600 channel views Flickr - OLCC has posted 12 sets of photos which have been a viewed 770 times

Recognition

In December 2009, the Oregon state Department of Administrative Services (DAS) recognized the OLCC's achievements in social media. In DAS’s State Guidelines for Social Networking Media, issued January 2010, the authors use the OLCC as an example of a state agency using social media. There is also a photo reference to the OLCC's YouTube page. Following the publication of the social media guidelines on GovSpace, the OLCC’s Government Affairs/ Communications team (responsible for OLCC’s social media use) received an email from DAS sharing positive comments and extending the thanks and kudos the OLCC team. The OLCC Government Affairs/Communications team has since been invited to sit on a task force, formed by DAS, to review best practices for Oregon’s state government use of YouTube.

Contact

Name: Joy Evensen, OLCC Public Information Specialist 
Agency: OLCC 
Address: 9079 9079 SE McLoughlin Blvd, Portland, OR 97222 
Tele: 503-872-5003 
Email: joy.evenson@state.or.us