Kentucky Air Guard Facebook site now offers expanded news, daily updates

123rd Airlift Wing Public Affairs

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KENTUCKY AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The 123rd Airlift Wing has re-launched its official Facebook Page with an improved version that features more content, expanded news coverage and daily updates.

The page now has links to more than 230 news articles and hundreds of photos dating to 2006, according to Maj. Dale Greer, 123rd Airlift Wing chief of public affairs.

“We’ve had an official Facebook page since 2011, but it wasn’t much more than a placeholder with basic contact information,” Greer explained.

“The new page has a complete archive of the content that we’ve posted to our wing website over the past six years. Moving forward, we’ll be making daily updates to the Facebook page to keep the content fresh.”

Greer encouraged all Airmen to “like” the page as an effective way to keep up-to-date on wing news.

“We’ve seen a tremendous change in the way people consume information over the past few years,” he said. “Many folks today simply don’t rely on traditional sources like TV newscasts, magazines or newspapers. They’d rather have their news delivered digitally — on a computer, smart phone or tablet — so they can read it at their convenience while it’s still relevant.

“Moreover, people are getting a lot of news through social networks, by reading things that their friends have posted or recommended.”

Greer cited a recent study by the Pew Research Center which found that 20 percent of Americans now get their news from Facebook and other social networks. Among users of social networks, the figure was one-third.

“This is a sea-change in behavior, and we’re moving to ensure that the wing has an active presence in the social media space,” Greer said.

He noted that Facebook surpassed 1 billion users last September at a time when such venerable publications as Newsweek and the Christian Science Monitor have suspended print editions.

“One in every seven people on the planet now uses Facebook regularly,” Greer said. “That’s a huge number of people reading and sharing news and photos with each other. We want to be able to harness some of that power to tell the public about the mission and the Airmen of the 123rd Airlift Wing.”

Greer said the Facebook page will work in conjunction with the wing’s public website by promoting new content as it’s posted online.

“In this way, we can use Facebook’s ‘word of mouth’ to drive traffic to the website, where we can post lengthy stories and extensive photo galleries. Meanwhile, shorter news items will go directly on Facebook.”

Greer said the wing website traditionally logs about 1,500 unique visitors per week, but he has already seen a substantial jump in visitors since the new Facebook page went live in January.

Facebook offers other benefits, too, Greer said.

One is the creation of a platform for two-way conversation with members of the community. Anyone is free to post comments to the wing page as long as they adhere to stated guidelines of decorum and courtesy.

“Our ultimate goal here is to raise public awareness of the important mission we perform in service to the nation and the Commonwealth of Kentucky,” Greer said.

“And social networking is the key to awareness and mindshare today. It allows us to engage directly with the public in a powerful and immediate way — without going through intermediaries like traditional news media —while leveraging the power of a global social network.

“One billion people can’t be wrong.”

The wing Facebook page address is www.facebook.com/123AWKY.

The wing public website is located at www.123aw.ang.af.mil.

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