Conference Interactive Program
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TRB 91st Annual Meeting (January 22-26, 2012)
Social Media and Public Transportation
Jan 24 2012 10:15AM- 12:00PM
Hilton, Jefferson West
Overcoming Barriers to Using Social Media in Public Transportation (12-2737)
Social media is a group of web-based applications that encourage users to interact with one another. Examples include Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. This paper presents findings from TCRP Synthesis SB-20, Uses of Social Media in Public Transportation, which explores use of social media among transit agencies in the United States and Canada. Many transit agencies have begun to incorporate social media into their marketing and communications strategies. Reasons for doing so vary, but goals for using these platforms may include communicating with current riders, reaching out to potential riders, developing stronger community connections, and enhancing the agency’s branding and messaging. Some organizations also use social media applications to support customer service and to obtain feedback from stakeholders on services and programs. Despite these benefits, social networking applications can pose specific challenges for transit agencies. Organizational considerations may include approaches to content management and strategies for handling online criticism. Another challenge for transit properties is estimating the resource requirements for managing social media, staffing the projects, and managing employee access. Agencies also face legal and security concerns, including online security, privacy protection, and complying with requirements for transparency and records retention. Finally, the rapidly changing social media landscape requires agencies to keep track of changes in this dynamic environment and to adapt accordingly This paper discusses the implications of these barriers for transit agencies and identifies best practices from public transit operators and other government agencies.
Bregman, Susan , Oak Square Resources, LLC
Transportation Research Board. 500 Fifth St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Copyright © 2012. National Academy of Sciences. All Rights Reserved.