Social media is a central component of an effective communications strategy and key to sharing the story of The University of Texas System Administration and the innovative work of its academic and health institutions.
The Office of External Relations, Communications and Advancement Services (OER) maintains The University of Texas System Administration’s official social media accounts on X, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram. The focus of the accounts is to both spotlight and amplify any information, news, announcements and messaging from UT institutions and share information, news and announcements about the UT System Administration.
If a UT System Administration office would like to create and launch a social media account or public-facing social media campaign, please contact the Digital Communications team in OER at 512.499.4597 to discuss the process, strategy, naming conventions, visual needs and anything else. UT System Administration-affiliated social media accounts and campaigns should be coordinated through OER to ensure they adhere to specific branding and content standards.
Below are social media guidelines for UT System Administration staff and departments to ensure we are effectively and consistently communicating about the System, best serving our audiences, and staying aligned to our broader Brand Guidelines. The social media guidelines are subject to change.
- UT System social media accounts should be focused in scope and topic, and should complement the UT System’s central web and social resources. For example, UT System offices with long-running Board-approved initiatives may require their own social streams because of the need to disseminate weekly content to keep stakeholders informed of these special projects. When thinking about developing a social media account, some questions to ask before getting started:
- What is the objective of this account?
- Who is the audience?
- What is the action you want users to take?
- What is the internal capacity to post meaningfully and consistently?
- General UT System news or UT institution news should originate from central UT System and UT institution social accounts. UT System-affiliated accounts are encouraged to share and repost these items. UT System will also cross-promote other UT System and UT institution social streams when appropriate.
- UT System Administration initiatives with a social media presence should not replicate (in visual identity or content) the official UT System social media accounts, so as to eliminate any source confusion with various audiences. However, UT System Administration initiatives with social media should clearly include graphic elements that tie them to the UT System.
- Design elements (logos, background, images) should be appropriate to the subject matter and consistent with the UT System’s branding guidelines, which are available on www.utsystem.edu/branding.
- All UT System-managed social media sites should meet the System’s Web Accessibility Policy. System pages on third-party social media sites should make the best effort to follow Web accessibility guidelines. System-managed social media sites can be hosted by third parties as long as they meet Web accessibility and Information Security Office guidelines.
- Be mindful of conflicts of interest. UT System social media accounts should not be used to promote personal accounts or content that reflects a personal interest.
- When resharing external content, ensure its relevance and accuracy before posting. Consider how resharing may be viewed as a possible endorsement of the original account who posted the content.
- Do not post or reshare content that is not public information. Refrain from sharing sensitive or confidential information about students, faculty, staff and other stakeholders to which you do not have permission.
- Obtain necessary permissions for posting copyrighted material, i.e., photos, music and videos. This includes asking permission to post from people that are featured in the post.
- Accounts on behalf of the UT System should not engage in political discourse or other matters that may be viewed as an opinion not in accordance with the System. Remember, you are representing UT System – it is not a personal account.
- Engage with your audience by responding to comments, messages and mentions. Monitor comments regularly to ensure that discussions are respectful and relevant to the UT System.
- Any UT System social media account should post and reshare content that is engaging and informative about the institutions and the System as a whole. Importantly, these accounts should refrain from endorsing outside businesses.
- Determine what content should go on each social media platform, as not all posts are relevant for every audience. Review social media analytics to determine posting times and frequency to maximize engagement.
- Do consider the visual components and calls-to-action that will best support each post, whether a still image or video, as this can help boost engagement and interactions, or link to a resource or program. (Note that each social media platform has its own format, dimension and size requirements.)
- Frequency of posts depends on channel, audience and content. Check the social media platform analytics to determine the peak times of your followers.
- When appropriate, tag official or institutional pages or any relevant official agencies. Avoid excessive tagging of outside entities.
If unsure about social media accounts and/or posting activity, contact the Digital Communications team in OER at 512.499.4597.