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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 planning on visiting the college.

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Muhlenberg College-Social media strategy: TERMINALFOUR tforum 2013

  1. 1. Muhlenberg College Social Media Strategy
  2. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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