In the beginning: My experience with free marketing techniques in public library sector. I brought that framework to academic library work. My position is head of information services: a dangerous position! Sorta like saying “you’re in charge of words” The director can deem lots of things as information services.! It’s fun and I love it! Buy-in was pretty smooth with everyone except main campus. Our audience is very different from main campus: adults who have a job/children/some college; they are returning to school to finish a degree. Main campus has freshmen. We mainly provide upper division classes.So! Internet access among the group is pretty ubiquitous. A general trend away from printing flyers (not green) to e-information.WE Had to make some DECISIONS about what we wanted to do:This is what we started with. We (PR, director, assist. Director, tech assistant, etc) began working to develop a presence online. Our budget for marketing was pretty low. Marketing needed to move to an e-platform.Which tools would we use.How would they know about us.
Main campus maintains this web site “for” us. We have little to no control over it. To get changes made we must EMAIL changes to them and try to explain where to place information and how it should look. After at least a ONE YEAR battle of trying to get more control over how this page looks we changed directions.BTW: from main campus web page, the link to get to our branch page is at the bottom and is an icon in the shape of our county. Otherwise there is NO indication that our campus exists.Soooooo.
We did this!This page has had many iterations. That’s what you do, but it’s a content management system. Varying levels of publishing can be assigned to various people. Accountability: My policy is to always give the director and assistant director administrator privaleges. They can do nearly everything I can do. Look at the features:Social network links are thereWe can post relavent videos, embedded into our web page.At the top are links that students use (we watched them) when they come into our computer lab to work.Meet the staff: a pic of every staff member can be viewed.The class schedule with room assignments is there. Classroom assignments are determined based on class size and we juggle that quite a lot up to the last add/drop registration day.A MAP is on the site !! We are downtown and some students have never been to our campus. The campus is in three different areas, across about 5 blocks of downtown. OUR web page is geared toward the enrolled student audience.We have more tools at work…..
Flickr! Free online photo album. Students, teachers, locals can see pics of what’s going on at our campus. If a faculty member is going to teach for us and wants to know what the classroom looks like they can see pictures of many of the classrooms on Flickr.Drawback: it’s free, but limited to 250 pictures, we rotate pictures in and out. Keeps our site fresh!
TWITTER!! We twitter about our events. This is an informal chatter that lets others know what we’re up to. It’s another communication stream.
We’re on FaceBook! WE have nearly 500 friends! Our academic advisor maintains this page. It’s a personal page, not a group or a fanpage. Posts to this page shows up in our friends’ news stream. Our news going to a focused audience. Before we began using social media, we had to pay for magazine and newspaper ads.
This is our youtube channel. Right now it’s the most popular platform we use.
On Google maps there are comments about parking and classes. Now with street view, students can get a pretty good look at what to expect when they arrive in the area.NOTE: check your google maps address. We discovered that one of our location’s addresses was indexed wrong in Google Maps.Four Square location based micro blogging is NEXT to be adopted.We’ve made progress!
You really just need to jump in and start using the products! There is no one way to use these Web 2.0 products. Use what you can, get to the rest of it later.What is synchronous for you? Maybe it means that you mail out SAS postcards. For some it might be using blogging software or by putting a comments box on your web site. Synchronicity for us meant making our presence known online. We don’t have a comments section on our blog but we will incorporate that soon.We had some hurdles to leap to get the program going. In-house buy-in was pretty easily accomplished. Everyone on staff saw the need for online social media. Getting students, faculty and locals to go to the blog rather than call for class room schedules and closings, events, has taken some time but it has gotten better each semester. Roll out on social media is a lengthy process. You will still need to use some print media for a while to let everyone know what you’re doing. That means putting the website, FB, twitter, Flickr, etc links on all of your announcements and flyers. To get local buy-in on a large scale we partnered with the Chamber of Commerce and then planned and hosted a social media conference. Very successful! We plan to conduct the conference twice a year to keep everyone up to date on new technologies and continue the buy-in. It’s the “Free” stuff we give our audience, which is an important element of online social media.Track your progress. Allison and I have had a conversation re measuring outcomes and its really hard to map online social media directly to student recruitment and retention but one thing is sure; not having a presence online puts you behind the times. In academia we talk a lot about the power of education, but when the conversation turns to having a FB account they want to know what the ROI is! Being online is not about ROI. It’s about being social! It’s NOT a waste of time.Connect with other ed that is doing the same. Make your blog the homepage in the computer lab, hold conferences, have monthly SoMe meetings, recruit non-credit classes to teach SoMe skills, Digital literacy is a hot topic right now in education. The students who are in K-12 schools will be using platforms in college that haven’t even been invented yet! They will certainly know/expect to have an e-conversation with you.What to expect:
Churchill: If you’re going through hell, keep going!It’s mucky out in the social media arena and that can hamper the embracing of social media. You’re going to have to let go of some control. On the other hand, You’re going to be able to get creative and do some things that fit your audience.Your social media plan will likely not look like ours. It’s infinately customizable!There’s work to be done!Most social media platforms offer free services with optional VALUE ADDED services.It’s not my job! Who’s job is it?This goes back to discovering what the talents of your workers is. Is someone already good at using social media. Can you get a workstudy to help out?
A paradigm shift is afoot! Change in student bodyChange in how classes are taught.Increasing number of online/hybrid/mixed media format classes. (if your students are in another country they can’t see the poster you put up on the hallway bulletin board)Increasing availability of online resources that are open source: moodles & sloodles and blogs!Mobile learning. Is the student mobile, the course materials or the teacher? Answer: YES! To all!
Best Practices Get, use and share your logo. Use a picture of a person on your twitter account. Maybe a group picture on your FB account. People like to look at pictures of people! This has the added bonus of eliminating “cold feet” when a prospective student (or current student) needs to approach someone in the office.We have come as far as we can without getting some professional help. We currently don’t have a permanent PR position filled. Cut-backs, etc.Next best thing: we found a social media marketing professional to do some consulting work for us. I found her via our social media. Her name is Melissa Hoffman from getmediafusion.com
Second Life: Library work is in progress; work to get land in SL on Jaguar Island embedded e-librarian;
Nabca presentation 2010
University of South AlabamaBaldwin County Branch Campus<br />Social Media and Web 2.0: It’s social!<br />Angela Doucet Rand, Head of Information Services, MLIS<br />Dr. Phil Norris, Director USA Baldwin County Campus<br />Dr. Cindy Wilson, Associate Director USA Baldwin County Campus<br />NABCA Presentation<br />March 2010<br />
Taking the leap: first things first.<br />Establish communication venues (synchronicity)!<br />Consider your resources<br />Discover obstacles<br />Measure<br />Share!<br />Plan ahead<br />
If you are going through hell, keep going. <br /><ul><li>Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things.” — Theodore Levitt</li></li></ul><li>A paradigm shift is afoot!<br />http://www.flickr.com/photos/zabara_breakdance/1518398941/in/photostream/<br />
Brand your stuff!<br />Image: Flickr: Paul_Mayner<br />
“It is better to have enough ideas for some of them to be wrong, than to be always right by having no ideas at all.” — Edward de Bono<br />The road ahead<br />