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While the use of social media tools is now recognised as an important medium to communicate with our audience, many institutions are still in the dark as to how best to use these tools to support recruitment, build brand and reputation, and facilitate better internal communications. There are pockets of good practice out there, but also dismal failures due to the lack of understanding of the nature and premise of social media.

This session will explore how institutions should approach the use of social media such as Twitter, Facebook, and blogs, and participants will have the opportunity to develop guidelines on using social media for their areas of work. There will also be opportunity to discuss how best to respond to negative comments and how to deal with awkward postings.

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Follow us on Twitter...Join Us on Facebook (A4)

  1. 1. Follow us on Twitter…Join our Facebook Group <ul><li>How to effectively integrate social media in your marketing and communications </li></ul>#A4
  2. 2. What we’re going to cover <ul><li>A (very short) introduction </li></ul><ul><li>Defining social media </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits of social media </li></ul><ul><li>Common pitfalls </li></ul><ul><li>Doing it right </li></ul><ul><li>Developing social media guidelines </li></ul><ul><li>Case Study exercise </li></ul>#A4
  3. 3. A (very) short introduction <ul><li>Journalist by trade </li></ul><ul><li>Worked in HE since 2000 </li></ul><ul><li>From web skivvy to digital marketing manager </li></ul><ul><li>Passionate about social media both personally and professionally </li></ul><ul><li>Annoyed by academics who think they know marketing because they’ve produced a course leaflet </li></ul><ul><li>Constantly battling institutional politics to ensure marketing and communications is done by those who know how to do it </li></ul>#A4
  4. 4. Unless you’ve been hiding underneath a rock... #A4
  5. 6. What is social media? Social media is media designed to be disseminated through social interaction, created using highly accessible and scalable publishing techniques. #A4
  6. 7. Benefits to Marketing & Communications <ul><li>Opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with your audiences </li></ul><ul><li>Real-time response and feedback to your communications messages </li></ul><ul><li>High impact yet low cost to implement (especially compared to traditional media) </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to influence and inform your target audience </li></ul>#A4
  7. 8. So if social media is the best thing since sliced bread… #A4
  8. 9. Why do we get it so wrong? #A4
  9. 10. Some common pitfalls* <ul><li>* the following are based on real people and situations (even if some of them sound ridiculous) </li></ul>#A4 /
  10. 11. Basing campaigns on technology rather than message <ul><li>“ We’ve set up our Twitter what?” </li></ul>Image courtesy of #A4
  11. 12. Wanting to control the public domain <ul><li>“ We want to grow our Facebook fans...but we won’t open our page to comments or wall posts” </li></ul>#A4 /
  12. 13. Thinking spamming is acceptable <ul><li>“ Why don’t we promote our courses...on other people’s fan pages!” </li></ul>#A4
  13. 14. Having an argument with your audience <ul><li>“ I had to tell him where to stick his opinions...he started it!” </li></ul> #A4
  14. 15. So, how do we do it right? #A4
  15. 16. Research, research and more research <ul><li>* Know your market and why you want to engage with them </li></ul><ul><li>* Segment before you communicate </li></ul><ul><li>* Develop REAL USPs </li></ul><ul><li>* There’s no such thing as a ‘one size fits all’ solution </li></ul>#A4
  16. 17. Resource appropriately and properly <ul><li>* Must have dedicated staff to manage campaigns </li></ul><ul><li>* Ensure staff have the experience, understanding and training </li></ul><ul><li>* Choose reporting tools that will help you analyse activity based on your objectives </li></ul>#A4
  17. 18. You’ll still need your website - work on it! <ul><li>* Link backs to your website enables you to find out what your audience is interested in </li></ul><ul><li>* Use social media to help you develop your website content </li></ul>#A4
  18. 19. Use a variety of approaches <ul><li>* Social media platforms should be part of a wider marketing and communications strategy - and not the sole media you use for your campaigns </li></ul><ul><li>* Use social media to support and enhance your offline campaigns </li></ul>#A4 /
  19. 20. It’s all about engagement, baby! <ul><li>* Broadcasting is NOT engagement </li></ul><ul><li>* Neither is getting into arguments </li></ul><ul><li>* Be honest about your intentions </li></ul><ul><li>* Like any relationship, it won’t always be smooth sailing </li></ul>#A4
  20. 21. Think of social media as a manageable but moving target <ul><li>* You can change the direction of your campaigns based on information gathered </li></ul><ul><li>* Learn key SEO tools to get more accurate and meaningful statistics to measure ROI </li></ul>#A4
  21. 22. Test and evaluate everything <ul><li>* The more meaningful the information you can gather from your evaluation, the better your future campaigns can be </li></ul><ul><li>* Take some risks - there is room for trial and error </li></ul><ul><li>* Base your evaluation on business objectives so you can benchmark ROI </li></ul>#A4
  22. 23. Now let’s put these principles into practice <ul><li>Task 1: In groups of four, choose a case study. Based on the brief, how can social media contribute to meeting the objectives of the campaign? (15 minutes + 10 minutes for feedback) </li></ul>#A4
  23. 24. Developing Social Media Guidelines #A4
  24. 25. Benefits <ul><li>Gives clear guidance to staff/students on user behaviours and the premise of social media </li></ul><ul><li>Helps avoid legal action against institutions </li></ul><ul><li>Develops better relationships with your audience </li></ul><ul><li>Provides steps on how to handle awkward or negative feedback </li></ul>#A4
  25. 26. Introduce Yourself <ul><li>If you’re representing your institution, make sure you make that clear </li></ul>#A4
  26. 27. Separation of Private and Professional <ul><li>Don’t mix the two - set up separate accounts/profiles </li></ul>#A4
  27. 28. Respond in a timely manner <ul><li>Don’t ignore relevant questions or queries </li></ul>#A4
  28. 29. Don’t spam <ul><li>Don’t bombard your audience with invitations - not everyone’s interested in your Farmville profile (or event) </li></ul>#A4 /
  29. 30. Don’t abuse tool features <ul><li>Remember Habitat? </li></ul>#A4
  30. 31. Be deliberate in your response <ul><li>You are representing your institution - don’t be frivolous or dismissive in your communication </li></ul>#A4
  31. 32. Dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s <ul><li>Leave the writing to those who can - check and re-check spelling, grammar and punctuation </li></ul>#A4
  32. 33. Now let’s put these principles into practice <ul><li>Task 2: In groups of four, critique the sample social media guidelines. Identify areas you want to expand/add to and discuss how you would implement this in your instutition (15 minutes + 10 minutes for feedback) </li></ul>#A4
  33. 34. Thank you for your participation Joanna Blackburn Web Marketing Manager University of Salford [email_address] @mancypino #A4