TSA Instagram account honored with three 2018 Webby Awards

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TSA receives Webby Award honors for the first time
National Press Release
Monday, April 30, 2018

WASHINGTON — The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS) announced last week that the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) Instagram account has won three 2018 Webby Awards. Announced annually since 1996, the Webby Awards are international awards honoring excellence on the Internet.

TSA’s Instagram account won in the following categories:

Webby Award: Social Content – Marketing / Corporate Communications
Webby Award: Social Content Marketing - / Weird
People’s Voice Award: Social Content Marketing - / Weird

“We’re not in the entertainment business, but mixing humor with our messaging has been a very successful formula for us, and I’m glad IADAS as well as our followers have recognized and appreciated that,” said Bob Burns, TSA’s social media lead who runs and writes the captions for the TSA Instagram account. 

Since its launch in 2008, TSA’s social media program has been a government leader in innovative communications that inform, educate and at times even entertain millions of travelers across the country.

TSA’s social media efforts utilize a variety of platforms to showcase its screening efforts, canines, packing tips, and initiatives that help to increase traveler awareness. TSA’s Instagram account—which often highlights the prohibited items that are intercepted at the checkpoint—has more than 865,000 followers.

In addition, TSA produced 1,200 tweets on its main Twitter account in 2017, resulting in more than 31 million impressions and over 207,000 followers. Through Twitter, TSA focuses on providing resources that will be most useful to passengers, to include TSA Pre✓® information, TSA policy or procedure updates, innovation information, major event information (e.g., Super Bowl), and travel tips.

In 2017, TSA published 73 posts on the TSA Blog, resulting in more than 3.5 million page views. The blog includes information to help address passenger concerns, a weekly highlight of intercepted firearms, travel tips and serves as a platform to communicate new policies and initiatives. In November 2017, TSA officially launched a Facebook page and aired its first “Ask Me Anything” on Facebook Live with more than 5,000 views. The Ask Me Anything series allows viewers to ask questions directly of TSA subject matter experts.

Through AskTSA, TSA’s social care team monitors the @AskTSA Twitter and Facebook messenger accounts to address passenger inquiries in real-time, 365 days a year. To date, TSA has received and responded to more than 450,000 questions from the traveling public via its AskTSA Twitter and Facebook Messenger accounts. This includes responding to more than 110,000 questions on what passengers can bring on a plane, more than 33,000 inquiries on TSA Pre✓® including Known Traveler Number resolution, and more than 12,000 responses to help passengers with disabilities and medical conditions with the security screening process.

TSA increased its YouTube presence in 2017 with more than 20 new videos, ranging from travel tips to interviews, and received a total of 1,638,616 views (1.5 percent increase from 2016). These videos aim to inform and educate travelers about TSA’s screening policies and procedures to better prepare them for the screening process.

Established in 1996 by the IADAS and hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, the Webby Awards honor excellence on the internet, including websites, advertising and media, online film and video, mobile sites, apps and social media.

The 22nd Annual Webby Awards will be presented May 14 at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City.

To view all of TSA’s social media accounts, visit TSA.gov.