Managing social media accounts
All parkrun events are encouraged to have active social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Vkontakte (Russia only).
Social media is a great way for events to interact with parkrunners, share photos, discuss the weekend’s event, arrange post-event coffees, make announcements and share inspirational stories from so many of the incredibly diverse parkrunners around the world.
Many people follow parkrun social media accounts and with that in mind, it is important to remember that event teams are speaking on behalf of their parkrun event, and therefore parkrun as a whole.
By posting on event social media accounts, event teams are representing parkrun and the values that we stand by. For example, in the event of a serious incident occurring at a parkrun, any posts and comments from an event could be quoted by the media or press as official statements.
The following are our best practice examples and things to avoid when posting on social media.
Creating event social media accounts
A Facebook account will be set up automatically for your event. Twitter and Instagram accounts should be set up by the Event Team, using the event email address. Password details and confirmation of account set-up should be emailed to parkrun HQ.
Passwords & security
It is essential that event team social media accounts are secure and this means having a strong password and, as volunteers may move on over time, it is important that more than one person has access to event accounts, otherwise there is the risk of being locked out.
Admin access for all social media accounts should be shared with parkrun HQ.
Following parkrun accounts
All events should follow @parkrun and their respective country accounts where applicable eg @parkrunUK for UK events, @parkrunAU for Australian events.
The following images must be used at all times.
parkrun 5k event profile photos for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts should be the purple parkrun logo.
junior parkrun 2k event profile photos for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts should use the turquoise green junior parkrun logo.
Social media profile
In the ‘about’ or profile section of a social media page the bio should read as follows:
A free, weekly, timed 2k/5k event every Saturday/Sunday morning in example park. Everyone is welcome to walk, jog, run or volunteer! 🌳#loveparkrun
The website URL should be a link to the specific parkrun event website e.g. https://www.parkrun.org.uk/bushy on Social Media
Our photography policy should be followed at all times, see the photography policy section of this document.
Hashtags are a really effective way to help Twitter, Facebook and Instagram posts reach a wider audience outside of those people who already follow the page. The more people who see posts, and the more engagement we can achieve, can ultimately lead to more participants (including volunteers) at each event.
The main hashtag we like to use is #loveparkrun
Our official social media accounts should always adopt the fundamental tone and language of parkrun the organisation. We absolutely love to see an event’s individual personality shine through but there are some guiding principles all event social media accounts must follow:
- An event’s social media account is an official parkrun communication channel and speaks on behalf of the event and the wider organisation.
- It isn’t appropriate to use singular first-person pronouns (I, me, my, mine, myself) when speaking on behalf of the event. Instead, teams must use plural first-person pronouns (we, us, our, ourselves).
- parkrun should always be one word, all lowercase. However, phones and computers will auto-correct spelling to separate the two words automatically (eg Parkrun, park run, Park run), so double-check before posting.
- Avoid posting in CAPITAL LETTERS which can appear aggressive.
- Refer to “Events”, not “Runs” or “Races”.
- Refer to the “First Finisher” not the “Winner”, but overall less emphasis should be placed on faster runners and more so on general participation.
- Emphasise that parkrun is also for walkers as well as runners.
- Don’t refer to your event as a “Race” or the “Best” - parkrun is a united community, not a competition.
Additional suitable content:
- Feel free to promote local community events or local running club races.
- Feel free to share any posts from the official parkrun Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.
- Try to share posts from your respective country accounts and the global pages.
- Event teams should remember that not everyone who follows social media accounts is an experienced parkrunners - there will be many who are new, or have never been before, so it is useful to explain how it works and some of the simpler details.
Things event teams should avoid in posts and retweets:
- Other than a supportive local cafe, event teams should avoid promoting any local businesses, personal interest or political party (including re-sharing content)
- References to alcohol
- Using the names of children
- Any unauthorised usage of the parkrun logo ie graphics or posters
- There is no expectation to manage direct messages through Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. On Facebook, private messages can be switched off if the event team wishes.
- There is no pressure for event teams to respond to social media communications instantly, the Communications team are always available to support with anything event teams are unsure of.
Timing of social media posts
The time that event teams schedule content plays a vital role in how many people will see the post. The best times to post content are typically mornings (before 9 am), lunchtime (12 pm - 2 pm) and evenings (after 5:30 pm).
If teams are unable to post at these times they should not be concerned. Posts can be scheduled in advance for certain times so they are automatically posted without anyone having to do anything. This works well within the Facebook app, and by using something like Tweetdeck for Twitter.
Social media is an incredibly powerful tool when used appropriately it showcases the diversity of landscapes and people at parkruns around the world.
However, social media is also a public forum open to everyone so event pages should represent the event and parkrun as a whole, rather than the personal views of the individual.
Social media pages are likely to be someone’s first interaction with an event, so social media should be as friendly and warm as the atmosphere is on a parkrunday.
Event teams should refer to these guidelines when posting, and if they have any questions about using social media accounts they should contact HQ via firstname.lastname@example.org.