This article was written by Plan A’s social media manager Noémie Burel.

Today, humankind has to face its biggest challenge yet and it’s not easy to process for tiny individual humans. On one hand, the scientific reposts are too hard to understand, on the other hand, the projections for our future are too scary to accept. To solve this problem we will have to educate the population and empower them to take action. 

Our social media manager extraordinaire Noémie Burel delivers a few of her secrets to use your accounts in the most efficient, striking and useful way for the planet. Get ready to #takenotes, because there is no plan B for your social presence! 

Know your style, know the rules

Let’s cut to the chase. When it comes to climate change, fear doesn’t work that well. If you want to use social media to fight climate change, you need to think about what you want to say, and how you want to say it. Whichever path you choose, also know that haters are a part of this game. Internet is way too anonymous for people not to take advantage of this rule. Know how to deal with them, and know not to be one.

Avoid trolling

Secondly, know your audience and frame your message. Communicating climate change is a delicate task, you need to find the balance between fear, credibility, scientific facts, empowering change and action. Maybe you prefer using humour and pop culture rather than classic references. All of this is up to you and should make you feel right.

Read also: Being a Lemur Ally on Social Media

Social media can be a tsunami. Half a billion people use Instagram every day, Facebook counts 2.4 billion monthly users… In comparison to what a magazine or even TV achieves, the numbers are mind-boggling. If you are looking to empower people taking action against climate change, social media is one of the best and cheapest ways to start. 

Take part in campaigns, deliver a message

Join campaigns! There are hundreds of active collectives that need the help of individual accounts to strengthen their campaigns. By adding your voice on top of many others, you benefit from the aggregated power of hundreds of accounts and they benefit from your voice and circles. A win-win for the cause you are fighting for, at no cost for any of the parties involved. 

slow down campaign with Plan A

Try out Plan A’s Instagram filter to tell the world to slow down (Credit: Plan A)

Did you know for instance that we’ve launched a filter on Instagram? Wait, what, no? Try it out, visit our profile, put your glasses on and share it on your account, I can tell that you will impress your followers! 

Create a community, become a collective force

So now, you have been interacting with larger pages, have participated in a few campaigns and are starting to see returns from it. People contacting you for advice maybe, or a first trending post that got you attention from one of your favourite organisation? It might be time to think about going further.

Out of the 1 billion active users of Instagram, 71% are under the age of 35. Young people, born in a digital world, with an inclination to tag friends on mildly funny memes. The idea of an online community makes natural sense to this generation. However, building and growing a community is necessary to get a message across in the digital jungle. A community will support you in the development of your project, push your message and image beyond your first circle, and circulate content better than playing solo will ever achieve.

instagram's rise to 1 million

Instagram alone has 1 billion users (Credit: Statista)

Where to begin? By stating your message and the purpose of your community! Try new content, funny, serious, educational, artistic, keep a track of all of this and evaluate what works better with your community! The most important is to be true to yourself, the message you want to pass on, and the impact you want to have.

Social media, despite their numerous criticisms, are a formidable tool. Tools are neither good nor evil, they are what we make of them. And these tools need the support of good guys and girls like you. Use them to empower the fight against climate change, because you never know where how far a shared post can go. 

Any other questions? Please contact me, I will be happy to give you a helping hand! 

credit for cover picture: Alan O’Rourke