Many of the institutions seeing the greatest success in leveraging social media communications to help boost strategic efforts in marketing and communications, student recruitment, and alumni engagement have actually invested relatively little budget and few staff to the effort. Instead, these institutions' marketing and communications offices have focused on identifying and leveraging those social media communications that are already happening, at varied points throughout the academic community. Coordinating university communications across multiple social media and traditional platforms can appear daunting, but the effort becomes simpler once you embrace the decentralized nature of social media, and then move to provide the necessary central resources to integrate, aggregate, and make the best use of the content that your faculty, staff, and students are already creating on social platforms. Your central channels can then tap those sources of content when needed to aid you in meeting specific objectives.
To learn more, we reached out to social media veterans Alan Webber, industry analyst and managing partner for Altimeter Group; Tim Jones, interim executive creative director at North Carolina State University; and Patrick Powers, director of digital marketing and communications at Webster University.
Here is their advice on:
- Identifying those faculty, staff, and students who can serve as brand ambassadors on social media channels – those who are already disseminating high-potential content through social media
- Maintaining central channels that serve as selective aggregators of social media content, and leveraging these channels to support specific institutional objectives