If there's one social media account that can make us laugh and raise awareness at the same time, it's that of the Mumbai Police.
Ever since their Twitter account made its debut in 2015, the Mumbai police have garnered applause for prompt and witty responses.
While the entire content team and the police department are responsible for delivering great content, Sunchika Pandey deserves a special mention. A resident of Mumbai, she has been counselling the Mumbai Police on social media outreach.
A journalist-turned-social media consultant, she is commonly also referred to as 'Twitter Madam'.
Pandey studied journalism at St Xavier’s Institute of Communication in Mumbai and worked for a local TV channel. After quitting mainstream journalism in 2013, she got the opportunity to work as a senior field correspondent and later as project manager for the social media management for the TV show Satyamev Jayate.
Her stint at the show helped her develop contacts with the officers in Mumbai Police. Taking cue from Bengaluru Police's Twitter handle, she started offering consultancy to Mumbai Police on developing their social media in 2015.
Soon after debut, their Twitter account started gaining momentum and netizens loved their posts which included informative posts with relatable references to memes and pop culture.
They joined Instagram, earlier this year.
In an interview with The Better India, Sunchika talked about the research and thought that went into developing the social media strategy for Mumbai Police. She said:
One error could undo years of good work. This is the brief that any police department understands before getting on social media. You have to gauge how people would interact on this platform. When a police department comes on social media, it’s for the people.
Following positive feedback, other police centres in Maharashtra also started approaching her for consultancy. Presently, her startup HAT Media, manages social media for Thane, Mumbai and Pune police departments.
Speaking on the success and popularity of these social media accounts, she gives credit to the police officers working round the clock.
My role is very little. The real heroes of all these social media accounts are the constables and officers who monitor these handles round the clock and ensure every concern is addressed. That is what made these accounts a hit with citizens.
Pandey and her firm guides several police departments on being brief, prompt, positive and interactive on social media and introduced us to the quirky and humane aspect of the police force.