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Succeeding with Social Media (CASE SMC 12)


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This is the handout of a presentation that Bill Hayward (Slover Linett Strategies) and Michael Stoner did at the CASE Social Media and Community Conference in Chicago, IL, in April 2012. We report on findings from the 2012 CASE/mStoner/Slover Linett Survey of Social Media in Advancement.

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Succeeding with Social Media (CASE SMC 12)

  1. 1. social media in advancement: year 3Succeedingwith SocialMedia 201218 April 2012: CASE Social Media & Community Conference
  2. 2. Contact us Bill Hayward 773.348.9215 Michael Stoner Michael.Stoner@mStoner.commStoner @mstonerblog
  3. 3. I. General findings
  4. 4. Overview• Third year of survey: to learn how education institutions manage social media• Sponsors: CASE, mStoner, Slover Linett Strategies• Method: survey mailed to 18,000 representative CASE members; blogged on mStonerblog; tweeted by Michael and other mStoner team members
  5. 5. Some things stay the same• Facebook: still the dominant channel• Most (82%) departments handle their own social media: but they have input from others• Top goals are still focused on engaging alumni and enhancing brand image• Just 1/4 of respondents say they are “very successful” in their social media efforts
  6. 6. But others change this year ...• Twitter is up, both in effectiveness and usage• LinkedIn and YouTube grew in importance, but not as much as Twitter did• Fewer institutions are using vendors community solutions like Harris Connect and iModules• Growing acceptance of social as effective: there is a slow but steady increase in acceptance that social media can be an effective communication tool
  7. 7. Channel usage + channel growth % Use % Growth Facebook 0 96 Twitter 80 5 YouTube 73 8 LinkedIn 68 3 Blogs 55 12 Flickr 51 11 43 2 Vendor community -3 33 Home-built community 27 15 Geosocial 0 17 -25 0 25 50 75 100Facebook: 96% usage, 0% growthTwitter: 80% usage, 5% growthYouTube: 73% usage, 8% growthLinkedIn: 68% usage, 3% growthBogs: 55% usage, 12% growthFlickr: 51% usage, 11% growthAn institutional website that is an aggregator of social network sites: 43% usage, 2% growthSocial communities provided by vendors through proprietary software (such as Harris Connect,iModules, etc.) 33% usage, -3% (shrinkage)A community created in-house by your unit (create/manage communities)27% usage, 15% growthGeosocial services (such as Foursquare or SCVNGR) 17% usage [new question this year]
  8. 8. Social helps .edu engageHow has social media been most successful for yourinstitution?Increasing engagement with our target audiences 57%Increasing awareness of your school 14%Building a stronger internal community 9%Creating awareness of key institutional initiatives 7%Increasing attendance at our events 4%Recruiting students 3%Communicating during campus issues/crises 3%Increasing donations 1%Other 3%
  9. 9. Social is now woven into campaigns Half use social as part How often is social a part of of a campaign of campaigns? 21% 40% 50% 50% 20% 19% yes no 1-25% 26-50% 51-75% 76-100% Campaign: a broader, planned effort to achieve a goal• Less than one-quarter use social media in every campaign
  10. 10. Tools used to promote social initiativesWebsite 91%Email 88%Social media 79%Blogging 23%Search engine optimization or search engine 21%marketingInternal publications 67%Direct print mail 52%External publications (not your institution’s 21%publications)Outreach and marketing at events 52%Radio 6%TV 4%Other 4%
  11. 11. Acceptance of social growing internally. But slowly.201220112010 0 20 40 60 80 Social media have great potential for achieving important goals in my unit My unit benefits from institutional support and buy-in for social deployment Expertise to help our social media efforts is readily available
  12. 12. More people working on social nowthan a year ago• At the institution level: • 32% have at least 1 FT, dedicated staff person on SM, up from 26% • 67% have at least one FTE (includes PT staff), up from 64%• At the unit level: • 19% have at least 1 FT, dedicated staff person on SM, up from 15% • 38% have at least 1 FTE (includes PT staff) on SM, up from 31%
  13. 13. We look internally & externally fortrainingExternal best practices in social media 55%Internal social media and branding policies 52%Technical assistance, or how to implement 43%social mediaContent development 37%Engagement strategies 28%Other 19%
  14. 14. But: there are questions about training• Are best practices shared widely enough for this to be effective?• Are social media and branding policies helpful, or are they just guardrails?• Should we be concerned that there’s little training in engagement strategies if our main goal with social media is to engage constituents?
  15. 15. II. Comments
  16. 16. Measuring• “Clemson has a Social Media Listening Center in partnership with Dell and Radian6, which allows faculty and students to monitor conversations, ID trends, etc., as well as do research and teaching. Were a ‘guinea pig.’”• “Conversions (targeted goals); analysis of ‘affinity’ growth”• “Number of enrollees”
  17. 17. Lessons learned, 1• Fish where your fish are. “Conduct research to find out where your audience already is before launching a new channel”• Talk and train. “Ensure internal communication is deployed along with training to potential users and content creators to maintain the business as usual approach.”• You aren’t in control, so pay attention. “Facebooks changes to the "group" set-up really messed us up. We thought we had enough recent activity to move us from "archive" to "current" but we did not. Our group went from 750 members down to 10.”
  18. 18. Lessons learned, 2• Buy-in is essential for success. “It is important to have "buy in" from high ranking officials in order for social media to succeed.”• No it’s not. “Jump in! If you wait too long for a plan, you will miss the boat.”• Plan, stay focused, measure. “My department creates a strategic plan before deploying any new platform. We believe it is better to focus on the 3-5 channels on which to meet our objectives, rather than spread ourselves thinly across every platform available.” “Very important to create specific strategies for each channel, identify metrics, target audience, medium specific content, and create a culture where it is about a global (department) communications plan that involves SM channels. We are also exploring effectiveness/relevance of management/ measurement external applications such as Klout.”
  19. 19. Crisis communications“We learned how many of our students use social media asa news tool when we had to close campus on day lastwinter for snow. Many of our followers told us they foundout first through the universitys social media sites—beforethey checked email for the standard notice or saw anannouncement on the morning news. That was fuel for us tocontinue what we were doing and making sure thatbreaking news is always on social media.Recently, we used social media to diffuse rumors about alock-down situation on campus. The lock-down wasprecautionary but rumors were rampant on Twitter andFacebook. We used the official university account to post aresponse and the chatter on social media quickly stopped.”
  20. 20. Policies and guidelines• Look to the experts. “All our policies are created by our governance and legal team, they are the responsible owners for this content and we treat them as a subject matter expert. Our role is to ensure the policies are visible to the world. Talk and train.”• Social moves fast: be prepared. “Be prepared to respond quickly in emergency situations. We have had a few situations where the social media response was held up by the official response process and it looked bad that it took so long to respond in our social media channels. You aren’t in control, so pay attention.”• “Policy” is cultural, too. Consider your campus culture. For us, it would have been impossible to get buy-in and approval for an official policy. So we went with guidelines instead.
  21. 21. Policies and guidelines• Social isn’t always special. “General guidelines about use of IT equipment and equality and diversity guidelines cover most unwanted/abusive behaviour on social media sites.” Im working with our HR department to move away from a punitive tone in our social media policy and toward a position tone in which employees are encouraged to use their status as brand ambassadors to enhance our work as the universitys fundraising foundation — well see how it goes• People want help. Guidance to units who manage social media properties on how to moderate comments and set expectations with fans/followers has been highly sought after and highly valued.
  22. 22. Policies and guidelines• Teaching moments for student workers. “We require our students keep their own social media private if they choose to like or follow our pages/accounts. We remind students to keep their social media tasteful and professional, especially if their profiles are public. They sign a written statement at the beginning of the year that they promise to do this.”
  23. 23. Be real about expectations“With the success of the Obama 2008 campaign manythought they could translate that money-raising success tohigher education development. Our university hired aconsulting company who claimed they could significantlyelevate annual giving via social media. This never transpired.There is a fundamental difference between a short-termcampaign with a defined cause, dollar goal and finish line vs.long-term relationship building and consistent, lifetime givingwhich is the main focus of the development office.We continue to explore and implement social media to raiseawareness and also for micro-campaigns where there is adefined cause and dollar goal. This micro-campaign can thenbenefit from alumni sharing it with others and becoming"virtual fundraisers" by driving others to the campaign.”
  24. 24. III. Success
  25. 25. Success factors• On average, Communications and Marketing staff tends to think they’re more successful, Development staff think they’re less successful• Drive their own social activities, don’t take direction from others• Use multiple metrics to gauge success• Have institutional support for social media• Have policies around social activities (content, branding, privacy)• Have more staff focusing on social• They plan—and want to do more planning
  26. 26. Success factors: experience• Believe in the power of SM to help them reach their goals• Regularly use SM activity with multiple audiences—they’re out there trying things• Actively use Twitter—a sign of more active SM institutions• Really use Facebook well—have nailed it, since it’s the most dominant medium
  27. 27. Success factors: reach• Use social media to strengthen brand image• Market their SM activities broadly• Regularly incorporate social into a broader multi- media campaign**Campaign: a focused effort to achieve goals using avariety of channels appropriate to the results sought
  28. 28. 2011, Webster University secured 200 tickets to seven concerts through a partnership with Verizon Wireless Ampitheatre anddevised a plan to distribute these tickets to those who engage with the University on various social media platforms. The idea wasto build brand awareness and drive to drive web traffic during the summer months, a time with little activity on the Websterwebsite. There were three ways to win tickets from Webster University as part of the social media campaign:1. Follow us on Twitter. Once a week we sent a tweet encouraging people to re-tweet a message. The message included links to ourtwitter account and our blog. Example: 2 tix courtesy of @WebsterU to the first 5 ppl to tweet: "@WebsterU is hooking me up withStyx/Foreigner tickets!" #STL2. Check-in to Webster University on Foursquare. We built a check-in special on Foursquare that people could unlock when theychecked-in to specific locations on campus.3. Post a video to YouTube answering the question Why Webster?Traffic coming from social media to the server during the months of June and July was up from 230 in 2010 to2,476 in 2011 and pageviews increased from 747 (2010) to 4,628 (2011).Twitter proved to be the most effective tool for communication about the Summer Ticket Giveaway, generating 822 mentions; 263new followers; 871 website referrals (204% increase from 2010). An additional benefit, although hard to measure, was the word ofmouth on campus talking about Twitter. While everyone following @websteru may not have re-tweeted the messages, they werepaying attention.The campaign only resulted in one user-generated video on YouTube but it provides an authentic testimonial that has since beenviewed more than 250 times.Webster University created nine separate check-in campaigns on Foursquare; 308 people view the various check-in specials and213 people unlocked them.
  29. 29. print: box of cards with word pairings web: Admissions: Chronicle of Higher Ed: the first six months: •33,500 page views •9,500+ unique visitors •1:55 average time on site •Visits from 64 countries •21% of traffic is WilliamsburgAnecdotal: My daughter Holly (high school junior) and my wife went on a campus visit Monday and brought back the new view book. It’s innovative and well done—very impressive compared to the materials we are seeing from other schools.Press:Chronicle of Higher Ed coverage:“Naked & Friendly” (mStonerblog post):
  30. 30. Nelson Mandle Metropolitan University (NMMU) flash mob staged within a busy shopping centre in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa, was filmed and flighted onYouTube as a branding and recruitment campaign aimed at raising awareness about NMMU beyond the region and to showcase it as a vibrant, multi-cultural, proudly SouthAfrican university. With only a small budget, we needed to be creative with our funds and so we turned to our own international award-winning choir, viral marketing and asupportive communication strategy to spread NMMUs good name. Although flash mobs are fairly commonplace overseas, in South Africa they are still novel.The main objectives of the flash mob video were to raise awareness of the NMMU brand (we are only six years old) and to advertise the closing date for undergraduateapplications using a medium that is particularly enjoyed by our target audience - future students. The vision of NMMU is to be "a dynamic African university recognised forits leadership in generating cutting-edge knowledge for a sustainable future". We also wanted our staff and current students to be proud to belong to NMMU and share thevideo with their networks too. We believe the visuals echo this claim with its vibrancy and multicultural mix of students. We were also the first South Africa university tostage a filmed flash mob, setting an example to other institutions when it comes to using social media to great effect.A supportive communication strategy was implemented to drive viewers to the YouTube site. This included the voluntary use of mavens and connectors - young people withhuge numbers of friends on Facebook, and other influential individuals who use social networks. The conventional media was also alerted once the video had been uploadedon YouTube. Key NMMU staff worked closely with the advertising agency, the production agency, the choir and the media to ensure a co-ordinated approach.Here are some of the indicators of the videos success: • Within weeks of its release in July, the NMMU flash mob was "the most watched South African video" on YouTube and the "all-time most entertaining South African video. • The content of the feedback on YouTube - some 18 pages of feel-good messages • The extensive television, radio and media coverage • The national branding, video production and campaign awards we won as a result of our viral marketing efforts with the NMMU flash mob • The award won by our agency Boomtown for the innovative campaign • The vast number of bloggers who shared the link and sang the videos praises • Apart from knowing that our brand now has reach beyond the Eastern Cape, the number of applications from undergraduates increased by 27% from 23 756 to 30 141
  31. 31. Facebook, email, the web, and other tools, Madison Area Technical College in Madison, Wis.,won public support for a $134-million rebuilding project by almost 60 percent of the vote.
  32. 32. #goetownblue vs. MessiahIn the fall of 2011, Elizabethtown College and Messiah College took a long-standing rivalry from the soccer field to the annual fund campaign through a giving challenge between young alumni—or those thathave graduated within the last ten years—called Battle of the Blues.The campaign, which pitted young alumni of the two colleges against one another to tally the highest participation rate, launched in July 2011 and wrapped up on October 31, 2011. The E-town Blue Jays cameout on top a participation rate of 7.85%; Messiah checked in at a close 7.72%.Melody Bitkoff, director of the Elizabethtown College Annual Fund, says that thanks to the support from young alumni, E-town not only clinched the title but also has made progress toward one of the College’sprimary fundraising goals: to increase alumni donor participation.“To date 9.78% of young alumni have made a gift compared to 7.12% last year and our overall alumni rate for the Annual Fund has increased to date too, from 13.42% compared to 13.19%,” Bitkoff said.In addition to emails and direct mail, the web and social media was used to heavily promote the giving challenge. First, a dedicated website, was created; this site included details of thechallenge, linked to donation forms, and also, each Monday during the competition, updated the current standings. Second, special Twitter hashtags were created to create buzz, provide a mechanism forparticipants to let their friends and followers know they gave and, of course, to encourage friendly trash-talking between the two colleges. Additionally, the Battle of the Blues website pulled in the Twitter feedfrom each college’s designated hashtag: #goetownblue or #gomessiahblue.Staff members from both College’s marketing and development offices also used the hashtag to inform those who may be on Twitter of the campaign’s progress and to “egg-on” or entice their young alums torespond and, most importantly, make a gift. Finally, E-town produced several short videos—mostly humorous in nature—to promote the contest. These videos were shared via email messages, Twitter andFacebook.But it wasn’t just an online campaign; Battle of the Blues also had some face-to-face time with alumni through a table at the Oktoberfest tent during the Elizabethtown College Homecoming and FamilyWeekend. The winning team was announced during the famous, annual soccer game between the archrivals. Will there be a rematch?--Donna Talarico, Integrated Marketing Manager, Elizabethtown College
  33. 33. []More: [; case study: it originally targeted Portland, the campaign expanded quickly. PBO evolved into a broaderawareness-building campaign for OSU. To make this shift, PBO initiated the Orange Spotlight in 2010.The feature invites nominations for businesses that are “Powered by Orange” — “owned by anOregon State alum, have lots of OSU alums working there, or are just friends of OSU. They also driveinnovation, support economic growth, and serve in the community.” Each month, a winning businessis selected for the “Orange Spotlight,” which includes a feature story on OSU’s website, promotion onits social networks, and inclusion in a campaign to push OSU fans to featured businesses via Poweredby Orange. People who nominate businesses are entered in a drawing for OSU Football season tickets.The result? Baker said, “We’re getting hundreds of nominations for businesses with some kind of OSUconnection.” The benefits can be real for businesses profiled. “We just spotlighted a vineyard in NapaValley, Lamborn Family Vineyards. Its owners are graduates of the OSU horticulture program andusing sustainable growing techniques. Lamborn got great publicity when pickedup the story. This gave us a great story to reuse as we talk about OSU’s new wine institute. It was awin-win for all concerned.”The “Orange Spotlight” nominations have enabled OSU to gain detailed information on hundreds ofbusinesses. Baker noted, “That’s a pretty significant result for us.”
  34. 34. a blog, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and other tools, friends and fans of the College of William and Maryoffered 839 suggestions for a new mascot; the site where their Griffin was revealed got 16,913 unique visitors;and they earned coverage on The Daily Show, the Chronicle, ESPN, and other major outlets.Other results: 839 mascot suggestions/90 days; 11,183 survey completions/4 wks; 3,345 view of mascotsearch YouTube vid; 16,913 unique visits of finalist unveiling; earned media= Daily Show, WaPo,ESPN, USAToday, CHE, etc.URLs for assets associated with this campaign:blog: wmmascot.blogs.wm.eduFacebook: @WMMascotYouTube: in Jon Stewart video:
  35. 35. nottspolitics.orgThe communications and marketing team at the University of Nottingham created a campaign focused on positioning Nottinghamas the definitive source of expert commentary on the 2010 UK elections. This involved both staff members in the communicationsand marketing team as well as faculty with expertise in politics. By live blogging 24/7 during the election season, they wanted todraw the attention of reporters and major media , scholars at other institutions, the general public, potential students, and publicopinion influencers.Before the effort began, they developed a series of goals to which they attached specific numbers. For example: “to generate 20pieces of national and international [media] coverage…”; “… to help increase applications by at least 5%.” In preparation, theteam researched reporters, bloggers, and experts, developing extensive lists of media contacts.One staff member worked closely with the faculty experts and bloggers to time tweets and posts in response to developingelection themes. Traffic was largely driven by Twitter (123 tweets with 7,779 click-throughs), online PR, and linked placement offaculty experts supported by their blog posts and traditional PR work.By the campaign’s end, 104 blog posts had delivered more than 90,000 page views. The campaign exceeded all the targets set bythe office. And: “Every item of national media coverage on Election Day featured a University of Nottingham spokesperson,” for atotal of 466 national media hits. Applications to the School of Politics & International Relations rose 15%.Relevant