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Muhlenberg College-Social media strategy: TERMINALFOUR tforum 2013

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'Social media strategy-get started':Muhlenberg College discuss their social media strategy to grow student recruitment and alumni donor participation and toimprove their brand perception for students …

'Social media strategy-get started':Muhlenberg College discuss their social media strategy to grow student recruitment and alumni donor participation and toimprove their brand perception for students planning on visiting the college.

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  • 1. Muhlenberg College Social Media Strategy
  • 2. Before We Start - What a Strategy Is Not • Only a set of policies or procedures • Only a series of posts or collection of media – “Lots and lots of video” is not a strategy (for us, at least) • Something that (completely) changes every single year Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 3. Identify Audience • First – who are you? At Muhlenberg, we are a: – selective, private, 4-year liberal arts college – Located in Allentown, Pennsylvania – with 2200 undergraduate students – That is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, but with a religiously diverse student body – With Division III Athletics – and 45% of incoming students rank in the top 10% of their high school class – That offers over 40 majors, including theatre & dance, business, biology, media & communication and neuroscience as some of our most popular programs Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 4. Identify Audience • Who is a member of our communications team? – Public relations – Information technology – Admissions – Alumni/Development – Academic Departments – Athletics – Clubs/Organizations/Campus Institutions Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 5. Identify Audience • Who are our customers? – Prospective students – Prospective parents – Prospective faculty – Current students/parents – Current faculty/staff/administration – Members of the community Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 6. Discuss Goals (for each specific audience) • What are our quantitative goals? – Higher number of admissions applications? – Increased alumni donor participation? – Meet event attendance goals? – Or is it just (shudder) more Likes and Retweets? • What are our qualitative goals? – Brand perception – First impression for students planning a visit? Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 7. Establish Boundaries and Best Practices • How will we engage our followers? • What is our balance between individual privacy and social ambassadors? • What individuals are given access to social media accounts? • Do we have a policy in place to handle abuse, whether it be accidental, intentional, internal or external? Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 8. Delegate responsibilities and note crisis-management procedures • What are our thresholds for determining a problem v. a crisis? • How do we protect our customers and our staff? • What backup systems are in place to ensure we can retain control of our networks in the event of social engineering, misplaced passwords, rogue employees, or accidental posts? • What tools do we utilize to ensure we can access networks in the event of a power or data loss? Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 9. Secure necessary resources • Do we have adequate staff? Finances? Time? High-level support? • If something is important to your administration, it should be reflected in the amount of resources listed above. Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 10. Identify when and where to drive traffic back to the website • The website is the official voice of your institution • Embedding content from social networks • Foster discussion between customers and staff • Improve the power of your message through a cohesive communication process. Edgy on Facebook and serious on the website will appear insincere Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 11. Monitor and measure engagement • What tools are you using to ensure that you are reaching constituents across social media and your website? – Google Analytics – Facebook Insights/Twitter Analytics – Hootsuite (and similar programs) – And, of course, Site Manager Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 12. Evaluate message for social networks, audiences and goals • How do you know if something is working for you? How do you know if it can work better? – Ask! • Test/focus groups, customer surveys, staff – Measure engagement against your competitors (when possible) • Understand who your competitors actually are helps, too Muhlenberg College, 2013
  • 13. Evaluate message for social networks, audiences and goals • Check back against goals in previous years/campaigns • Check back against the goals you identified when creating a social media strategy • Identify successes that you didn’t plan for as well as missed opportunities • Revisit who is in your key communication team and ensure they have the information/support they need Muhlenberg College, 2013