More Than Just Friends: Creating Vibrant Social Communities for Recruitment & Retention

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More Than Just Friends: Creating Vibrant Social Communities for Recruitment & Retention

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Drawing from a blend of academic research and real-world campaigns, CUnet's social media strategist, Jeff Berg, will discuss how social media can play a key role throughout the school selection and......

Drawing from a blend of academic research and real-world campaigns, CUnet's social media strategist, Jeff Berg, will discuss how social media can play a key role throughout the school selection and application process and provide attendees with practical tactics to implement in their social media strategies today.

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  • 1. More Than Just FriendsCreating Vibrant Social Communities for Recruitment and Retention
  • 2. The Faceless Voice You’ll Be Listening To Jeff Berg Social Media Strategist
  • 3. Agenda• The World of Social Media• What is Social Media (And Why Should You Care?)• Social Media for Recruitment and Retention – Inspiring Human Interactions – Acclimating New Students – Enabling Existing Students – Spotlighting Students and Staff• CUnet Offerings• Q&A
  • 4. What is Social Media?• Social media has changed how human beings communicate, organize, and spend time online: – 75% of all adult internet users. – More than 20% of all time spent online.• Comparisons of most well-known social media: – If Facebook were a country it would be the 3rd largest in the world with 600MM residents. – If Twitter were a book it would be equivalent to 1,500 complete works of Shakespeare each day. – If YouTube were a movie it would take over 400 years to watch.• And social media has big implications for business – 91% say consumer reviews are their #1 aid in purchase decisions. – 87% trust their friends recommendations over critics. – Three times as likely to trust peer recommendations over advertising when considering a product
  • 5. Social Media for Educational Institutions• Aid Student Enrollment – Provide a feel for school life through an online community. • 3 to 5 times more successful than standard marketing targeting • Peers are more influential in college choice than advertising. • Facebook fans are almost 70 percent as likely to recommend a product. Twitter followers are even higher.
  • 6. Social Media Inside Educational Institutions Heiberger, “Have You Facebooked Astin Lately?”, “New Directions for Student Services” no. 1247
  • 7. Student Usage• Prospective students today… • Grew up with Internet technology • Nearly three-quarters use social media • 18 percent use Twitter • More than 9 out of 10 own a cell phone • 67 percent own an MP3 player • 81 percent access the Internet wirelessly • 70 percent believe colleges should have a presence on social networks • 70 percent want online contact with a school as they complete an application “Scrolling Toward Enrollment,” Noel-Levitz, 2009 Pew Internet & American Life Project, 2010
  • 8. Prospective Students Want to Be Engaged • What do they want? • 70% of prospective students want colleges and universities to create a social media presence • 51% want to be contacted directly through a social network • 75% want schools to create private communities • What do they find most effective? • 50.1% said event notifications • 47.7% said posts from other students • 46.6% said posts from the school itself“Scrolling Toward Enrollment,” Noel-Levitz, 2009, “Recruit at Bowling Green State University: The Role of Social and Digital Media,” Glassford , Dec. 2010
  • 9. Why Aren’t More Schools Doing It?• Overwhelmed by all the choices• Measuring success seems difficult• It requires dedicated staff• Confusion of ownership
  • 10. Don’t Feel Like This11
  • 11. Social Media for Recruitment &Retention
  • 12. You’re Probably Already Using It• University of Mass, Dartmouth Center for Marketing Research – SM Usage • In 2007, 61% of admissions offices used at least one social media outlet • In 2008, 85% • In 2009, 95% • 91% said it was important or somewhat important
  • 13. Two Caveats• We realize school rankings are contentious – Weighting is not empirically determined – Methodology changed from year to year• Even if they weren‟t, social media is not a silver bullet – Schools that engage students through social media are also more likely to innovate – Innovation is the key
  • 14. Social Media Adoption • U.S. News & World Reports Top 30 National Universities Facebook – 23 link to social media YouTube presences from their front Twitter page iTunes U – Active engagement Blogs • Ten schools currently Flickr Used use some type of active Futurity Didnt Use social media LinkedIn engagement Message… • Of those, six have maintained or improved 0 20 40 their standing (and one decreased by one rank)15
  • 15. Student Engagement – DeVry University16
  • 16. Student Engagement – Dartmouth
  • 17. Student Engagement – Jack Welch Management Institute18
  • 18. Inspire Human Interactions “Learning to speak with a human voice is not a parlor trick. It cant be "picked up" at some tony conference.” – Thesis 33, The Cluetrain Manifesto • Human interactions inspire confidence • Don‟t be afraid to speak with your own voice • It doesn‟t have to be every interaction • What part of their lives do you want to be?19
  • 19. Pre-Start Communities - Rutgers• Problem – How do you keep admitted students engaged before they start classes?• Solution – The school created Go Rutgers, a private community site for admitted students – Encourage existing students to interact with enrolled students, sharing experiences and advice. – Features • User forums • Social profiles • Image sharing• Results – Within 72 hours of launch, 457 admitted students logged in, viewing the question forum 32 times – Within seven months, 2,000 admitted students had joined.
  • 20. Pre-Start Communities – Warwickshire College• Situation – Lengthy period between program acceptance and joining the course caused students‟ loss of momentum, reconsideration of course and even college attendance• Solution – BTEC ND Media Games Development Group • Students engage in pre-semester group projects • Allowed for increased discussion and social integration prior to actual college attendance. • Additionally, increased academic integration and faculty interaction• Result – Decrease in time spent on “ice breaking” curriculum – 100 percent increase in overall retention rates – Complete lack of course withdrawals
  • 21. Acclimate Students “Students can ask questions like „whats the food like?‟ or „whats there to do near campus?. If I were 18 years old, this is how I would want to get my information about university. It gives students an authentic look at the university.“ - Yuri Rodgers Milligan, Director of University Relations • Some schools see huge success with this • ASU‟s social community increased sophomore retention by 5% for students that used it. • Users of the UT Tyler Facebook community were five times as likely to enroll as non-users. • Social technologies allow you to make students part of the community before they‟re geographically close • Allow admitted students to talk to enrolled students • Encourage admitted students to form their own social connections with each other • Don‟t neglect the personal aspects • Provide resources that enable students to hit the ground running22
  • 22. Private Communities - PhoenixConnect • Released by the University of Phoenix School of Business in Sept. 2010 • Features – Focus on existing students • Support to students from peers and faculty outside of the classroom through message boards • Specific interest-specific communities – Focus on students nearing completion • Profiles indicate academic information, employment aspirations and status • Alumni directory with over 120,000 connections • Outcome – 99% adoption rate after one month – Intended to be rolled out to all students by Sept. 201123
  • 23. Enabling Students – University of Florida• Goal: – Provide a resource for students to find quality tutors• Offering – A Facebook application allows people to volunteer as tutors and tutees to rate them• Result – More than 120 tutors contributed information – Organizes more between 50 to 100 hours of tutoring each week
  • 24. Enabling Students • Social media isn‟t just a megaphone • Just because you offer it, doesn‟t mean that everyone uses it or trusts it25
  • 25. University of Chicago - TweetChicago • Launched October 2008 • On Dec. 10, 2009, totally replaced “A Day in the Life” blog • Launched October 2008 • Now 15 authors featuring both students and faculty • On Dec. 10, 2009, totally replaced “A Day in the Life” blog • Content ranges from the mundane to relevant to the legal community
  • 26. In Summary • Inspire human interactions • Acclimate new students • Empower your existing students • Showcase their successes (even if it‟s just finishing the crossword puzzle)27
  • 27. CUnet Offerings
  • 28. So you want to…Discover What TheWorld Is Saying• Monitoring of all brand-related topics across thousands of social media websites• Near-real time updates on published content – High priority or important posts – Can be delivered right away, daily or weekly• Monthly trend reports examining – Key topics of conversation – Trends in content categories – Activity across multiple social media types – Tracking of student outreach – Expert analysis and recommendations
  • 29. So you want to…Manage Your SocialMedia Presence• Social Engagement – Reach out to prospective students, existing students and alumni – Go beyond just a Facebook page – Show thought leadership in your industry • Encourage students, alumni and faculty to take part in existing massage therapy communities • Aggregate discussions to showcase interesting conversations about the industry as a whole• SocialThumb Social Media Management Solution – Manage all of your social media presences through one control panel – Assign tasks, manage approval processes and schedule content publishing – Seamlessly cross-publish across multiple networks – Track unique visitors from each social network to target more efficiently
  • 30. So you want to…Improve StudentSatisfaction• Social Media CRM Solutions – Proactively address student issues before they become a problem – Get real-time updates as issues appear online – Manage workflow through social media engagements – Auditing engagement trails – Analyze positive interactions
  • 31. So you want to…Increase Retentionor Enroll-to-Start• Retention-Focused Communities – 76% of incoming students in 2009 said they want their school to provide a private social network – Customized communities address your students core needs – Impact enrollment and engagement by driving interconnectedness
  • 32. So you want to…Help Graduates GetHired• Alumni engagement networks – Help alumni network – Create active job message boards and recruitment channels – Aid in fundraising – Disseminate prestigious alumni news
  • 33. So you want to…Figure Out JustWhat to Do• Social Media Consulting Services – Create a flexible policy for your school‟s social media presence – Learn effective techniques to streamline engagement methodologies – Audit existing social media presences – Receive strategic and tactical insight from industry experts – Expertise on building
  • 34. Questions & Answers
  • 35. Q&A After this, who wouldn‟t have questions?
  • 36. Contact:Jeff BergSocial Media StrategistE-Mail: jeff.berg@cunet.comPhone: 201.477.7687CUnet‟s Blog: http://blog.cunet.comFor more information: