HigherEdWeb.org published an article on The State of Social Media In Higher Ed, which lists some important ways to think about social media as a University tool rather than an admissions tool. The author points out that even though pretty much every University has a social media presence, that having a presence doesn't mean we're adding value. The article goes on to provide the important big picture steps you need to take to transform your social media including creating a strategic plan, empowering departments and educating decision makers on the use of social media.
Mashable's article 6 Best Practices for Universities Using Social Media, which has been shared over 6,200 times, gives concrete actions we can take to turn our big picture plans into an every day reality. The author, the Director of Young Alumni Engagement at Syracuse University, talks about the importance of setting goals, creating guidelines and choosing your platforms wisely.
1) Talk: Universities can move slow, so get it going. Talk to the Dean. Tell your staff. Check in with Faculty. Mention it at the next inter-departmental meeting. Get the official approval and the unofficial consensus needed to move forward.
2) Write: Establish your goal and your departmental strategy for achieving that goal. Put policies and procedures into place and into writing.
3) Start: And start small. Work with one staff member and one faculty member. Use that experience to update steps 1 and 2, then rinse and repeat.
Arden Schuman is a M.S. Candidate in Integrated Marketing Communications at the Medill School at Northwestern University. Arden currently serves as the Assistant Director of Marketing and Recruitment for Northwestern Law School. @ArdenSchuman