Published on March 10, 2014
3 Big Reasons Universities Need a Social Media Monitoring Tool
Universities & Social Media When it comes to social media, U.S. universities are schooling the masses…
Even brands can learn from higher education institutions simply by looking at their social networks and seeing how they: Market themselves Maintain their reputations Engage their consumers (i.e. the community of students) Promote their wide variety of products (i.e. courses and extracurricular activities)
When it comes to converting applicants to freshmen, social media has replaced the printed prospectus. In fact, Drake University’s 2013 study found that one in five of their students were influenced to enroll there because of the college’s social media presence...
Universities like Drake are using social media to improve their overall brand image, but this is only possible through social media monitoring This is because Universities who are investing in their online reputation must: • Encourage people to connect with campus life online • Keep track of their engagements on all social networks • Justify ROI to the University Chancellors
A good social listening tool is not just helpful; it’s mandatory. Social media data and analytics are crucial when it comes to the 3 most important areas of a university’s social media strategy...
And here’s why...
#1. School Spirit & Brand Image Q: What do all of the most prestigious colleges have in common? A: A sterling reputation and powerful branding.
Just look at Harvard University...
With more than 3 million fans on Facebook and over 330,000 Twitter followers, Harvard University are proof that a carefully maintained reputation and good brand visualization on social media is rewarded.
Everything Harvard posts features the crimson Harvard shield, whether it’s news about the latest research or footage of their men’s basketball team winning the Ivy League championship, encouraging school spirit and amplifying their brand message.
But what about the posts they can’t control; negative comments about their institution that are shared by others online?
Universities like Harvard use social listening to keep track of everything said about their brand online. This allows them to react immediately and keep their brand image in tact. And it’s not just comments...
Social listening tools are getting high tech and monitoring image-based social networks like Instagram and Pinterest. Now, even unflattering photos are getting picked up and analysed in case they pose a threat and require immediate action.
#2. Enhancing Student Experience For students, the transition from high school to higher education is like moving from a fish tank into the ocean. It can often feel as though there is little support available.
Luckily, social media can serve as a constant Q&A session for students...
...but how do universities make sure every student feels as though he or she is being heard? Social Listening is Key!
By monitoring conversations, Universities can respond to students and give them the answers they need. Thanks to this process, students are connecting with all aspects of college life through social media including: • Where to eat • What events to attend • Office hours of their tutors, etc….
Social media measurement also enables colleges to check the level of engagement with every new post. They can find out: • When content is being shared • The number of mentions • The sentiment of these mentions • The most popular media type This will help them determine the optimum conditions for each post.
#3. Attracting Prospective Students & Staying Connected with Alumni Marketing and customer retention are just as important for universities as they are for brands. Social media has become the avenue for attracting future students and staying connected with those that have left.
Marketing (Applicants): High school demographic Videos and images of student experiences generate the most engagement Customer Retention (Alumni): Age 23+ professional demographic Things like university research news and sports results appear to be more popular
But which networks are prospective students most active on & which are better for targeting alums?
Social listening will help you find out which social media sites are used by different demographics.
Social listening will also help you justify your social media spending on things like marketing… Social Media ROI is about the numbers: • How many people saw it? • & out of those, • how many liked it enough to engage and join the online community?
Social media data collected after a campaign is tangible, numerical proof of whether it was successful or not. So when it comes to convincing university departments of social media’s importance, social media monitoring is the most important thing of all.
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