From Facebook to Twitter, social media has staying power. The name and functionality might change, but our our need to be connected isn’t going away. Our connection and the power of social media can’t be ignored as we think about training. Let us look at four tips to keep in mind as you consider using social media as a training tool.

1. Know Your Audience
You need to know how your audience connects to social media. Do they use a smart phone or does more of the audience use tablets? Do they like the quick bites of information they get from Twitter or are they drawn to the images they find on Instagram. Knowing your audience’s preferences lets you leverage their interest to increase learning and connections. Knowing your audience’s preferences also lets you harness the power of their social media connection, creating a greater impact for your message.

2. Have a Social Media Plan – and work it!
You need to develop a strategy for using social media. Decide if social media is going to be a place where you introduce topics before deeper training occurs, or if it's going to be a space where you reinforce training. A plan ensures consistency so that your audience knows when to expect you to post. Social media is a fast-paced tool, so you can’t have too much time lapse between content postings. Regular, consistent use creates the greatest results.

3. Give Your Social Media Training Goals
Having goals for training through social media accomplishes two things. First, you can’t measure what you don’t define. Like with traditional facilitated learning and online learning, you want to define objectives for training on social media and measure its effectiveness so that you can adjust your strategy and message as needed.

Secondly, having goals for training through social media helps your audience understand that this training has purpose and isn’t just an opportunity to connect to their favorite social media site.

4. Keep it True to You
Any training launched through social media should carry the same brand messages that your audience hears from other sources. Just because you are using a different medium to convey your message doesn’t mean you need to change your message.

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