Using Social Media Tools & Technology to Promote Your School District -- Long Island School PR Assn.


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Presentation to Long Island School PR Association, October 2010.

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  • Anybody know what Web 2.0 is?   Ask about FB and Twitter.
  • So what's social media? It's a term we use to describe a number of Web 2.0 tools available to you. The tools include: Ask who uses any of these tools? There are many more, but we'll focus today on these tools.   Should be at 11:10 am
  • The statistics are rather staggering. People keep saying Twitter use is down. Since when? Maybe it’s time to get on the Web 2.0 train before it leaves the station.   11:15
  • We'll be talking today about how you and your administrators can use these tools, and I will not be discussing tools for the classroom. But instead, these are tools to be used from the inside out. They are all collaborative tools, tools for personal and professional growth, and PR tools -- ways to spread the word about the value of your school district. Reaching parents, students, staff and the community at large. Teachers like to call a Personal learning Network. Lifelong learning. You'll see some stats today about Web 2.0 users.
  • Here are some myths about using social media, all generated by detractors or simply by people who don't understand how it works. While it's true that you shouldn't use social media simply because "it's cool," or because it's the latest trend, you should know what the myths are. The stats show that adults are the fasting growing group on social media. Internet security won't be compromised. Just filter instead of block these sites. Or unblock by specific URL. The eRate funding is a myth, spread by some IT people, unfortunately. Social media will only waste time if you allow it to. Develop some guidelines/terms of use for your staff and students. Most social media sites are free to set up and use.
  • This is from the White House website. A sidebar/box that lists all the ways, via social media, that you can follow what's going on. These pages are active and dynamic, changing every day. 11:20
  • A fee reader allows syou to grab the RSS feeds from website and display them for you to read and use.   Once you have your Feed Reader, find sites that syndicate content and add their RSS feed to the list of feeds your Feed Reader checks. Many sites display a small icon with the acronyms RSS or XML to let you know a feed is available.  
  • I'm being a bit facetious, but I like to call these three the "Big, Scary Places" where school districts dare not tread.
  • Facebook. Not to be afraid! Here is the Facebook fan page of the NYC Department of Education.  You'll notice that it's actually a fan page, rather than a FB personal page, where you might have friends that you converse with on a regular basis. You can see their news, comments, wall, photos, etc, and vice versa. On a fan page -- important distinction -- you create a page and others can become fans of the page. If you allow it, they can comment on your posts. But you won't see their pages or their photos or their news. It's more of a one-way street, to protect the page from being cluttered with other people's stuff and from anything that might reflect poorly on your district. Go to the NYC page.
  • On the Boston Public Schools FB page, you can look at how this tool can be used -- they post their own news, links to outside news about them, videos and photos. Show the College Month video, Boston Globe story.
  • Questions before moving on to Twitter.
  • I keep hearing from people who don't use Twitter that it's just a fad. Click on headline to get to Gigatweet.
  • Teachers are using Edmodo for making homework assignments. Can be secure and limited to the 20 students in your class.
  • There's an immediacy to Twitter that you can't find anywhere else. Witness what happened on Jan. 15, 2009.
  • This is the Yonkers Twitter feed, and you can see how the District uses Twitter for announcements, links back to the website, etc. Most districts using Twitter will also wisely include links to other important websites and web news. For example, if you have legitimate news about H1N1 from a reputable site like, you might want to post occasional updates on your Twitter page as well. Make it a vital & useful page for your readers.
  • Here's our Twitter page at SWBOCES.
  • Thousands and thousands of organizations and companied are now twittering, for PR reasons and customer szervices reasons. Look at the NASA Twitter. Remember that the tone on FB and Twitter is quite a bit more casual than the tone might be on your D website. Think of it as a CONVERSATION and remember that the conversation is -- or should be -- two way.
  • Questions about Twitter?
  • Here's an important Twitter feed to follow. A good reason for your PR person to be on top of the trends and the news.
  • When it comes to social media like YouTube, it's important to develop a terms of use policy for students and staff. Guidelines on the proper use of Web 2.0 applications and websites. This would require a whole separate presentation, though.
  • 2 alternative to youtube: teachertube, which is gated and usually not blocked by districts zamzar, which allows teachers to download videos form youtube and use them in the classroom from their hard drive.
  • There are another 14 slides beyond this one that contain resources, links, more Web 2.0 tools and videos. Feel free to visit my slideshare site and scroll through. In addition, I am always happy to take your phone calls or emails with questions about any of the topics we've discussed today.
  • 1. You have to have your own FB page in order to do this. 2. Navigate to the link you see in blue. 3. Fill out as much of the information about your district as you can and upload your District logo. 4. Add content and set up any applications you plan to use -- polls, photos, videos, etc. 5. Click on "publish this page," which will be at the top of the page in bright red lettering. Don't forget to set parameters for the site, including who can comment, whose posts you can see,
  • Tweetbeep is just one of many tools that have cropped up recently and are designed to make twittering a bit easier. If Twitter is a PR tool and folks get their news partly from Twitter, then this makes sense. Tweetbeep allows you to get email alerts about any topic you choose. I chose NYSSBA this week, and will receive alerts about any conversations on Twitter that mention NYssba.
  • In closing, I'd like to pass along this brief list of golden rules for social media, which I've borrowed the Salem Keizer Oregon School.
  • show the grandview library blog.
  • Using Social Media Tools & Technology to Promote Your School District -- Long Island School PR Assn.

    1. 1. Evelyn McCormack        LISPRA, October 2010 Using Social Media Tools & Technology to Promote Your School District
    2. 2. Three Places to Find this Presentation <ul><li>1. Go directly to my Google docs presentation: </li></ul><ul><li>2. Email me at and I'll send you the link. </li></ul><ul><li>3. On Slideshare: (live links won't work) </li></ul>
    3. 3. Social Media Tools <ul><li>Communication/PR Tools: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Facebook </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Twitter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>YouTube </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Flickr </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs/eNewsletters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Alerts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>RSS Feeds </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    4. 4. A Few Social Media Stats <ul><li>Facebook (created 2004) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>512 million active users, 250m log on daily </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>100,000 age 64+, 310,000 between 45-63 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>300,000 businesses now have FB fan pages, including hundreds of school districts </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>25 million new members every month  </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>LinkedIn (created 2003)  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>60 million members </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Twitter (launched 2006) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>105 million registered users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How many tweets? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>YouTube (launched 2005) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Every minute, 20 hrs of video uploaded </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    5. 5. <ul><ul><li>Publicize your achievements </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Drive traffic to your District website </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Control your own message. An alternative to print media in getting the word out. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop a Personal Learning Network -- share ideas, collaborate, professional contacts </li></ul></ul>What Can Social Media Do  for Your School/District?
    6. 6. Common Myths About Social Media <ul><li>1. Social Media is for Teens and Tweens </li></ul><ul><li>2. Social Media will compromise your internet  security & give you viruses </li></ul><ul><li>3. Social Media will jeopardize your eRate funding </li></ul><ul><li>4. Social Media will waste time </li></ul><ul><li>5. Social Media is expensive </li></ul>
    7. 7. What I Tell School PR People <ul><ul><li>Just go with it: Establish Facebook and Twitter pages and don't tell anyone. You can keep FB private until you click on the &quot;publish&quot; button. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>When you're comfortable with how the site works, publish and start building support. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Social media&quot; says it all. Don't try to use a &quot;traditional PR&quot; mindset. It's a conversation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make it friendly, casual and invite interaction. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make your district website the center of a coordinated communications plan.  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drive readers back to your website for in-depth information. Conversely, use the website to drive readers to your social media site(s). </li></ul></ul>
    8. 8. Are You Blocking? Filtering?
    9. 10. When your IT Department says it can't be done, show them this: --from
    10. 12. Feeds and Alerts RSS (Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary) Feeds allow you to receive and organize all your favorite websites and blogs, instead of searching for them. Almost all news-related sites, weblogs and other online publishers syndicate their content as an RSS Feed to whoever wants it.                       iGoogle                     Pageflakes                     Netvibes                     Bloglines                      Google Alerts (alerts via email)               
    11. 13. Start Your Day with iGoogle ...
    12. 14. Google Alerts
    13. 16. Scary, Scary Places Facebook, Twitter & YouTube
    14. 17. Higher Education on Social Media
    15. 18. Independent Schools on Social Media
    16. 19. White Plains Public Schools 935 fans
    17. 20. NYC Schools 10,000 fans
    18. 21. Boston Public Schools 1,500 fans
    19. 22. Queensbury UFSD 376 fans
    20. 23. New York State School Boards
    21. 24. National PTA 12,620 fans
    22. 25. Don't Let This Happen to You... 1,087 fans
    23. 26. School Districts/Schools on Facebook <ul><ul><li>Durham, NC, Public Schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anchorage School District  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blue Valley Schools (Kansas) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Taylor County Schools (Florida) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Boston Public Schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ferndale, Mich., Public Schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Richmond, Va., City Schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pendleton, Ore., Schools </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fort Worth, Tex., Independent SD   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Plano, Tex., Independent SD </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Portland, Ore., Public Schools  </li></ul></ul>
    24. 27. <ul><li>Akron Public Schools Crestview (Convoy) Local Schools Ohio School Boards Association (OSBA) Ohio Hi-Point Career Center Tri-Rivers Career Center Elyria City Schools South-Western City Schools Lorain County JVS Muskingum Valley ESC Warren County Career Center Pickaway-Ross Career and Technology Center Butler Tech Middletown City Schools Miami Valley Career-Technology Center </li></ul>
    25. 28. To Tweet or Not to Tweet Twitter in Public Education Photo credit:
    26. 29. <ul><ul><li>Micro-blogging tool (140 characters) that can be used to post news, links, photos and more. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A tool that can be used (along with others) to drive traffic back to your district website </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Edmodo -- Twitter for Educators </li></ul>Twitter
    27. 30. Janis Krums’ Tweet from his cell phone on Jan. 15, 2009 – aboard a ferry on the Hudson River in NYC
    28. 31. Who’s Using Twitter? <ul><ul><li>Largest age group is 35-49, comprising almost 42 percent of the site’s audience. (Nielsen Online) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Majority visit Twitter while at work, and 62 percent access it from work only. (Nielsen Online) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    29. 33. Twitter as a News Tool Stissing Mountain HS, Pine Plains, NY
    30. 34. Yonkers Public Schools
    31. 35. Elmsford UFSD
    32. 36. Southern Westchester BOCES Twitter's new look
    33. 37. Companies & Organizations Tweeting <ul><ul><li>Ford </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Starbucks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Whole Foods </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Southwest Air </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jet Blue </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Smithsonian </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>American Red Cross </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Honda </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>NASA </li></ul></ul>
    34. 38. Government Twittering <ul><ul><li>Centers for Disease Control </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The White House </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>US. Dept. of Education </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>10 Downing Street </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. Senate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>U.S. House of Representatives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>World Health Organization </li></ul></ul>
    35. 39. Twitter Lists @schoolpr/k12schools
    36. 40. Missouri Educators Twitter List
    37. 41. My Favorite Twitter List
    38. 42. Facebook to Twitter
    39. 44. Wisconsin Dept. of Public Instruction
    40. 45. Oak Harbor School District 5,800 video views
    41. 46. Manfield ISD Texas
    42. 47. Boston Public Schools
    43. 48. Check out Youtube EDU for ideas/inspiration
    44. 49. Remember: YouTube is Used by the Masses...
    45. 50. Who Else is on YouTube? <ul><ul><li>The Pope   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Queen Elizabeth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Barack Obama   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>PBS  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National Public Radio   </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The White House    </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disney Parks  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The Travel Channel </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The New York Times   </li></ul></ul>
    46. 51. Alternatives to YouTube  (in the classroom) <ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><ul><li>TeacherTube (gated videos site for teachers and students. Not blocked like YouTube) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Zamzar (allows you to download videos from YouTube and use them in the classroom without having to go online) </li></ul></ul>
    47. 52. Commenting <ul><ul><li>Allow/encourage comments on Facebook (can see names & profile photos) Offensive comments can be removed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Monitor Twitter &quot;followers,&quot; avoid &quot;following&quot; individuals but companies/organizations OK  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Turn off comments on YouTube (they're anonymous) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Moderate!  </li></ul></ul>
    48. 53. Social Media Policies/Rules of Engagement <ul><ul><li>Just taking off. Do you use the tools first, then write the policy? Or write the policy first, then start using the tools? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Three audiences for policies: public/parents, students, staff </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Don't have to re-invent the wheel. Update Acceptable Use Policies and Code of Conduct to include use of social media </li></ul></ul>
    49. 54. Lee County (FL) Schools Two parts: 1. district/professional use 2. personal use
    50. 55. Facebook Disclaimers/Rules of Engagement
    51. 56. New York State Internet Safety Page Janell Hallgren, Erie 1 BOCES Policy Services or 716-821-7084
    52. 57. Webinar: Policies for 21st Century
    53. 58. Inspiration/Best Practices news releases social media links youtube videos contact info for the press
    54. 59. I Am CPS
    55. 60. Northfield Mount Hermon School
    56. 61. Email:    Facebook             LinkedIn      Blog : School Communications 2.0 Twitter:
    57. 62. Creating a Facebook Fan Page 1. create a &quot;personal page&quot;, either in your name or in a fictional name related to your district (founder, mascot, etc.) 2. link account to an authentic email address and wait for FB to confirm. 3. go to: 4. When page on left comes up, choose Official Page   5. Choose Local Business 6. In dropdown, choose Education 7./ 7.  5. Give your page a name, click checkbox, then Create Official P Community pages are less private than fan pages. Members can see each other's information. Better for PTAs, Foundations, causes, etc.
    58. 64. Set a Customized URL for Your Page 1. Once you have 25 fans, get a customized URL for your page by going to: 2. Any FB fan pages attached to your account will show up and you can choose a user name. 
    59. 65. Building Your Page 1. Upload district logo 2. Insert mission statement or paragraph explaining that this is the official FB fan page of your district 3. Add address and phone in info box. Choose tabs for your page
    60. 66. Facebook Insights Once you've created a fan page, you'll see an Insights box in left hand margin. Click on &quot;see all&quot; to see more info about your page -- viewers, demographics, etc. You can also elect to receive Insights emails once a week.
    61. 67. Facebook in Education
    62. 68. Setting Up Twitter 1. Go to   2. A window like the one at left will come up.   3. Click on &quot;Join the Conversation.&quot;   4. A window like the one at bottom left will appear.   5.  Choose a user name as close to your school name as possible. 6. Add your email address -- personal or business.   7. Type in the security code then click “I accept, Create my Account.” 
    63. 69. Twitter will find people in your email address book and suggest that you follow them.  While this is cool, you might want to hold off following anyone until you've started posting to Twitter.
    64. 70. Twitter Tools TweetBeep allows you to get email alerts about tweets on a topic you choose.
    65. 73. Twitter Search <ul><ul><li>Search by name, user ID, topic. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Search by hashtag (#haiti) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Search using the @ sign (@wpschools). </li></ul></ul>
    66. 74. URL Shorteners <ul><li>All free: </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
    67. 75. Retweeting & Direct Messages hashtag -- put in front of any term or name. Great way to follow conversations     -- use RT to repeat a post made by someone else on Twitter. Identify the source by using @ in front of their Twitter ID. -- use D in front of someone's ID to send a direct message A shortened URL. You can get apps that do this.
    68. 76. Removing Comments and Followers On Twitter: Go to your followers, and click on the &quot;gear&quot; icon. The dropdown will give you options. Click on &quot;unfollow&quot; or &quot;block&quot; On Facebook: Just hover your cursor over any comment and then click on the &quot;x&quot; to delete any comment. You can also delete your own posting on FB by hovering to the right of your comment and clicking on the &quot;remove&quot; button.
    69. 77. Social Media Aggregators <ul><li>Tweetdeck & Hootsuite </li></ul>
    70. 78. Two Great Resources Mashable's Twitter Guide Book Mashable's Facebook Guide Book
    71. 79. A Few Other Handy Tools... <ul><li>Issuu </li></ul><ul><li>Upload any print document to this site. </li></ul><ul><li>Once the doc loads, it will be visible on your bookshelf. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>You can &quot;embed&quot; the document anywhere on your website. </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Easy to read, no need to download PDFs. </li></ul>Tools of the Trade
    72. 80. Slideshow Tools Photobucket , Flickr, and several other photo sharing sites come with the ability to make slideshows.  Just download a group of photos and copy the embed code they give you and place in news section of your website. Mac users: You can also do this on iMovie.
    73. 81. Golden Rules for Using Social Media <ul><ul><li>Respect the spirit of the Internet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Listen, give kudos and be generous. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Add value. How am I adding value to the conversation or the community? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Respond in a timely fashion. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do good things. Visit Social Media for Social Good </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be real. Authenticity is important. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Collaborate. It's all about community. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>--credit: Simona Boucek, Salem-Keizer (Ore.) Public Schools  </li></ul>
    74. 82. Resources Additional Web 2.0 tools, links and more videos
    75. 83.   Web 2.0 & Social Media Resources Online Document Sharing: Google Docs Scribus (group writing/editing) Piconote -- online note-taking Helipad -- online document and notes tool Writewith -- cooperative document editing Newsletter Creation & Tools: Letterpop (create newsletters for free. A bit clunky.) Issuu (free-post any print document, email, embed, etc.) Photo Editing: Snipshot (edit your photos online/alternative to Photoshop) FixRedEyes -- fix red eye on photos online
    76. 84. Wikis: Wetpaint Wikis   Wikispaces   Blog Platforms: Wordpress Blogger Edublogs Organization: 30 Boxes (online calendar) Remember the Milk ( online to-do list and task management) Evernote (clipping favorite websites and saving online) Writing: Save the Words -- Vocabulary builder (hilarious and fun) FreeDictionary Gramlee (site that checks your grammar--not free)
    77. 85. Twitter tools: Grouptweet – send private messages to specific groups using Twitter Mytweetmap – shows where tweets are coming from on a map Twitter Search – search for terms and people on Twitter Twitpic – Post photo links on Twitter Twitter 101/A Special Guide Make Use Of's The Complete Guide to Twitter Miscellaneous Web 2.0: VisualCV – Create a visual resume online The Common Craft Show (video how-tos)   A-Z Glossary of Web 2.0 Terms Slideshare NSPRA Facebook Page Kansas State University's Mediated Cultures Website Big Think
    78. 86. eSchoolNews Educator Resource Centers Go 2 Web 2.0 – great resource Good Search -- search engine that donates one penny to school districts for every search made by a user   Related Presentations : Four Social Media Sites Schools Can't Ignore -- Lorrie Jackson Dive Deep into Facebook -- Lorrie Jackson Free Webinars: eSchoolNews Classroom 2.0 Burrelles Luce