Social media is an essential component of the University's overall communications strategy. Kentucky State uses social media to promote its mission, goals, programs, student/faculty/staff achievements, campus events, and to engage with alumni, prospective students and community members.
General Recommendations and Best Practices
Use these guidelines to make the most of your social presence.
- The Division of Brand Identity and University (hereto referred to as “The Division”) reserves the right to monitor, prohibit, restrict, block, suspend, terminate, delete or discontinue your access to any University-related social media account.
- The Division reserves the right to remove any content deemed inappropriate. Examples include obscene, discriminatory, harassing or threatening comments; content that violates any law or regulation; calls to violence; and, content deemed to be off-topic.
- Social media is not the appropriate place to resolve issues, complaints or suggestions about individual experiences. These issues should be forwarded to and handled by the appropriate office.
- In an emergency or crisis situation, official information will be provided by the main Kentucky State University social media accounts and official University communication channels. You should only share information provided by these channels.
- Before retweeting or sharing content posted by others on official University channels, ensure that the content is accurate and reflects the university’s position, mission and values.
- Social media channels must be continually updated and monitored. Accounts that have been inactive for more than one month will be subject to deactivation or deletion.
- The Division approves the use of official social media accounts for University-related purposes only.
- All users must complete the Social Media Account Registration form.
- If the requested social media platform requires an email address as part of the registration process, you must use a Kentucky State University email address.
- You do not have the right to make content available that contains personal information including, but not limited to, employee information, personally identifiable information or any information subject to regulation under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) on any social media account.
- If you photograph or record an identifiable student with the intent to publish on social media, you must have a signed Photo Release form before posting. It is recommended that you exercise proper judgement and discretion when posting on social media, avoiding content that is distasteful.
- All official University social media accounts must respect privacy and federal Copyright law.
- Employees must adhere to the Kentucky State University Ethical Principles and Code of Conduct, the Human Resource Policy manual, and the Appropriate Usage and Use of University Internet policies.
- Seek approval and training from the Division of Brand Identity and University Relations
- Have authorization to post on your department’s behalf
- Protect confidential and proprietary information
- Respect copyright and fair use
- Ensure the security of social media accounts
- Be respectful and thoughtful
- Be consistent and timely
- Be accurate
- If available, use the University name in your handle first (e.g. @KySUAdmissions or @KySUAg)
- Create accounts using your Kentucky State email only
- Link back to kysu.edu anytime you are able to
- Post private, restricted, or sensitive information
- Engage in arguments or negative dialogue when someone disagrees with your post
- Represent your personal views as those of the University
- Use images that are too small to be easily recognized in a browser or on mobile devices
- Design your own department logo that is not recognizable as being affiliated with the brand identity of Kentucky State
- Use Kentucky State’s logo or any other University images on personal social media sites
- Craft a new message for every network
- Not all content needs to be shared everywhere
- Character limits vary by platform, make sure your text is relevant, engaging, and authentic
- Always take a second look before hitting “send”
- Post at the right time or use a scheduling tool
Platform-specific Guidelines and Best Practices
Each social media channel has its own guidelines and best practices to maximize your presence and increase your influence.
Recommended Image Sizes:
- Profile Picture 180x180 (displays 170x170 pixels on most computers, but will display at 128x128 on smartphones)
- Cover Image 851x315 pixels (display size may appear different on viewing device)
- Cover Video should be at least 1250 x 312 pixels and between 20 and 90 seconds. For best results, choose a video that's 1250 x 463, with a 2.7 aspect ratio.
- Shared Image: 1200x630
- Event Image 1920x1080 pixels
- To avoid any compression or distortion, upload a JPG or PNG file.
- 1 to 80 (recommended)
- Upload videos to Facebook directly for more engagement and shares
- Include relevant links and high-quality creatives to drive engagement
- Use a single hashtag
- Know your audience
- Pay attention to your insights
Recommended Image Sizes
- Profile images are 400x400 pixels
- Header images 1500x500 pixels
- Twitter supports JPEG, GIF, and PNG file formats.
- Maximum file size for profile photos is 2MB.
- You can include up to four photos, a GIF, or a video in your tweet.
- 71 to 100 (recommended)
- Photo and GIF attachments do not count towards the character limit in a Tweet (in iOS, Android, twitter.com, and mobile web clients-only).
- A URL of any length will be altered to 23 characters, even if the link itself is less than 23 characters long. Your character count will reflect this.
- Retweet relevant content
- Reply to tweets
- Monitor events, keywords, accounts and hashtags
- Tag appropriate accounts/users to help increase the reach of your tweet
Recommended Image Sizes
- Profile Picture: 110x110 (minimum)
- Even though the dimensions are in a square format, Instagram profile photos are displayed as a circle. Make sure any elements you want to focus on in the photo are centered so they don’t get cropped out.
- Feed Photo 1080x1080 Square 1080x1350 Portrait 1080x566 Landscape
- Aspect ratio: landscape (1.91:1), square (1:1), portrait (4:5)
- Recommended image size: Width of 1080 pixels, height between 566 and 1350 pixels (depending on whether the image is landscape or portrait)
- Stories 1080x1920
- This is an aspect ratio of 9:16.
- Uploading an image with a smaller pixel size (but the same aspect ratio) means the Story will buffer quickly.
- If you don’t use this ratio, the Story might show with strange cropping, zooming, or leave large sections of the screen blank
- IGTV 1080x1920
- This is an aspect ratio of 9:16. Cover photo: 420 x 654 pixels
- IGTV Cover Photo Size: 420 x 654
- Maximum video length 60 seconds
- Bio Length 150 characters
- 138 to 150 (recommended)
- Don’t over post
- Repost user-generated content that is applicable and appropriate
- Be visually consistent
- Use no more than 5 to 10 hashtags (30 allowed)
- Engage in comments
- Consider Instagram stories
- Maintain brand voice across all content
Recommended Image Sizes
- Profile Photo 800x800 pixels
- JPG, GIF, BMP, or PNG file (no animated GIFs)
- Square or round image that renders at 98 X 98 pixels
- Banner Image minimum dimension for upload: 2048 x 1152 pixels with an aspect ratio of 16:9
- At the minimum dimension, the safe area for text and logos: 1235 x 338 pixels. Larger images may get cropped on certain views or devices.
- File size: 6 MB or smaller
- Video Watermark 150 x 150 pixels
- Use a PNG, GIF (no animations), BMP, or JPEG file that’s 1MB or less.
- Write a strong title
- Create a standout thumbnail
- Include video tags
- Add social media links to your banner
Social media branding guidelines are meant to help our followers instantly and easily recognize our accounts as officially associated with Kentucky State University.
To strengthen the Kentucky State University visual identity on social media, all academic and administrative units of the University must use the same avatar. The avatar to be used is the Jackson Hall logo. The Thorobred logo is reserved for use by Athletics only.
Unique avatars for special events or programs affiliated with Kentucky State should not be used. The University avatar may not be used for personal accounts.
The colors and designs of the official social media avatars may not be altered, nor may designs or objects be placed on top of them.
To request the official University avatar, you must register the social media account you officially manage for Kentucky State.
Kentucky State’s voice in the social media environment is similar to its style in publications — conversational, courageous, friendly, and approachable.
Tone varies, depending on who you’re talking to, where you’re talking to them, and why. But our voice should stay consistent.
The cover photo provides opportunity for your page to express distinction and differentiation. Find a photo that encompasses what your unit is about. Ensure that the photo is large enough not to create any pixelation and small enough as to not cut off any text or graphics. It is recommended to check both mobile and desktop versions after being uploaded.
When creating a hashtag for an event, be sure that it contains a connection to the university:
Although there are different limitations regarding name length across social media platforms, there is always an opportunity to include the specific names of entities. Kentucky State University uses the handle @KyStateU. However, our preferred name use on social media for sub-brands of the University is with Kentucky State University or KYSU as the base name, as shown here:
- Kentucky State University Land Grant Program
- Kentucky State University Athletics
To help distinguish Kentucky State University from other colleges and universities with KSU as initials, the use of KSU is reserved for use by Athletics only when used in conjunction with Kentucky State University and/or Thorobreds:
- Kentucky State University Thorobreds
To make your profile easily recognizable, identification of academic and administrative units should be placed in profile names. Avoid using acronyms in the display name unless the entire name does not fit in the character limit. In this case, be sure to spell out the acronym in your profile description text so that the account can be easily searched.
*This use applies to Kentucky State’s name for social media only. For guidance on name usage in print, see the graphics standards manual.
Connect with us, Thorobreds!
Kentucky State’s social media handle is @KyStateU.
Email email@example.com if you have any questions or issues.