U.S. Navy: Navy Social Media: Integration and Strategy — Live from BlogWell

1:25 — Kurt Vanderah introduces the U.S. Navy’s Director of Emerging Media Integration, Scott McIlnay.

1:26 — Scott says their mission includes advocacy, policy, training, best practices, management, metrics and analysis, identify emerging trends, and keep focus over the horizon.

1:27 — Scott: Social media makes the Navy a better service and as a result a service better able to achieve its missions and objectives.

1:28 — Scott says one of the first things they did was develop monthly and weekly metrics to track their social media. They also developed a directory so that their very large organization can stay organized.

1:29 — Scott used the directory to keep track of the genuine and official resources in social media.

1:30 — Scott says that everything that they produce that isn’t classified is put out on their slideshare account.

1:31 — Scott says the Navy is on Facebook, NavyforMoms.com, Twitter (@NavyNews), YouTube, flickr, and NAVYLive Blog.

1:32 — Scott says they all encounter challenges to their social media programs.

1:33 — Scott says right now there is not an official policy for how social media is used across the Navy. It’s currently being worked on.

1:34 — Scott says training is a big issue. Sailors or families don’t understand the impact that they can have in the social media world.

1:35 — Scott says social media is new and its importance still needs to be proven for budget.

1:36 — Scott: I am more than confident that we can teach our sailors to use social media.

1:37 — Searches of the USS Carl Vision skyrocketed once news got out that the ship was being rerouted toward Haiti. The Navy worked with the personnel on ship to help them with their existing social media presences or setting up a new presence where it didn’t exist.

1:39 — Scott says monitoring helped ward off negative news stories before they became stories.

1:40 — Scott: Social media significantly contributed to our ability to communicate news about the Navy involvement in Haiti.


Q: How often do your detractors show up on your social media presences?

A: Scott: We track everything and we record our actions. If the comment doesn’t meet our standards, we take a screen shot and delete it.

Q: What do you use as a monitoring tool and what reports do you use?

A: Scott: We use Radian6 and really like Twitter Stream Graphs to help with Twitter.

Q: You seem to have a very concentrated team in charge most of the official posting. How do you monitor all the sailors that are out there?

A: Scott: It depends on where the conversation occurs. This is mostly the enterprise viewpoint and not the decentralized viewpoint of what happens. From a PR perspective, I’m mostly concerned with our official presences. If something does come across to us, then we engage with the person as required.

Q: Aside from Navyformoms.com, how are you using social media for recruiting?

A: Scott: Our recruiting is handled by a different organization within the Navy. The Facebook recruiting is very targeted right now, but they are working on a broader social media presence. They are also working on getting all the recruiting stations into social media to interact directly with potential recruits.

Q: Also, do you have policies around how Sailors interact on social media?

A: Scott: As for policies, they are all in churn right now. We don’t have anything that says this is what you do in social media, but it’s a work in progress.

Q: Aside from Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube are there any commanders that are on social media?

A: Scott: ADM Harvey has a great blog. It has a lot of detail and he is active in engaging participation.

Q: Is there one service that really stands out as having great social media presence?

A: Scott: The Army really stands out. I try to model a lot of what I do on the successes that they have.

Q: How do you plan on training once you establish your policies?

A: Scott: Right now we’re very focused on trying to get our policies in place before we can focus on training. I believe there will be multiple levels: Public Affairs, Sailors, and the families of Sailors. The Navy has annual training requirements that I believe we can plug into once it’s developed.

Q: What is your impression of the tone from the upper levels of the Navy in regards to social media?

A: Scott: The threats to the network are very real and the key is to focus on mitigation. We need to figure out how we approach these tools and avoid not using them at all. Once we get past the idea of control in our communicating, then it will make it a lot easier. We need to build it one example at a time.

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