Turn Marketing Negatives into Positives

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Stuff happens. We can’t control it, and even when everything has been planned out, things will still go wrong at times. And we can use these situations to our advantage.

Negative Comments

People will have negative things to say from time to time, whether it be because a student got a parking ticket, or a student wanted to give feedback about programs at the university, you will hear opinions. Turn these negative comments into positive ones by helping your audience members understand things and fix situations.

A student who feels they’re not represented well on campus provides the chance to set that student up with a meeting with the president to make sure he’s heard. By helping each individual person who tweets or posts, you are changing their relationship with the university, and once you do that, they’ll feel more connected. The bigger the brand advocate, the more they’ll sing your praises.

Mistakes

We’re all human, and we make mistakes, so when they happen, own up to it. Apologize, and make the situation right. As the social media or community manager, a lot of times these mistakes may have nothing to do with you, but your audience member doesn’t care if it was your department or another one. They just want a solution, and to know that someone cares about making it right. So do just that. Make it your problem, find the solution and make it right, even though you didn’t have anything to do with the original issue.

Negatives Turn Into Positives

It’s amazing how the smallest things can make negatives turn into positives. Fixing situations, understanding and listening to your audience members can have just that effect.

Retweet After Me: Week of Mar. 25, 2014

Department-Level Content Strategy by Erin Martin

Last year, I scraped up enough funding to attend Confab Higher Ed, the inaugural higher education content strategy conference held in Atlanta. As I was wandering around, meeting inspiring folks and talking shop with people who get it — who see the value in thoughtful, mindful online communication — I kept getting asked a question over and over. “You work for a department — like, directly with faculty?” Imagine an excited, incredulous face. [Read More]

Could Snapchat be the Next Big Trend in Student Marketing? by Patrick Quinn

Social media marketing has become a necessary resource in the realm of student recruitment but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a constant challenge to stay on top of the latest trends. It sometimes seems like a giant game of tag, chasing students and prospects to the next hot platform for a chance to communicate with them. We wrote recently about widely reported findings that teens are flocking away from Facebook, citing privacy concerns and the “uncoolness” of parents liking their posts. One emerging social media contender that has won significant enthusiasm among the 13-25 demographic is photo messaging app, Snapchat, currently top of the free Apple App chart. [Read More]

Facebook Reportedly Slashing Organic Reach for Pages by Melissa Hoffmann

Facebook is reportedly slashing organic reach for Pages, a move that could have a sweeping impact on brands that have spent big on the social platform as well as local companies that have worked hard with limited resources to develop often modest fan bases. [Read More]

Innovative Approaches to Student Admissions by Patrick Quinn

In the world of higher education, the beginning of March means that application deadlines for next fall’s admissions are fast approaching, if they haven’t already passed. Admission decisions actually began being released before Christmas for rolling, early and priority applications at some American colleges that believe the first acceptance letter a student receives is most likely to be acted upon. As the percentage of students sending out three or more applications has been steadily rising every year, some schools are taking innovative approaches to increasing the likelihood that their offers are accepted, thereby optimizing the admissions yield. [Read More]

The Secret To Airbnb’s Freakishly Rapid Orgy Response: “Scenario Planning” by Ian Allen

Airbnb uses strategic thinking to shield the company–and its renters–against scandals such as orgies, prostitution, and even suicides. Airbnb host Ari Teman handed over the keys to his Manhattan apartment last Friday to a guest visiting New York ostensibly for a wedding. But when Teman returned to his apartment that evening, he was aghast to learn that the guest had rented his apartment so he could host an all-night orgy that was open to the public. [Read More]

Growing and Nurturing an Audience

social media flowers

Recently, I’ve experienced a recurring theme of people asking about how they can use social media to inform people, to promote their event, or because they just need a Facebook or Twitter page. And yes, social media can be used to inform people and promote events and programs, but that’s is not what they are about. They are about conversations and relationships. And don’t even get me started on having social media channels just for the sake of having them. But your audience members take some nurturing to grow, so give them a little water and sunlight and they’ll grow into thriving, engaging members of your community.

Take the Time

Just like an taking the time to pick up the phone and call an old friend, you need to take the time to find out how your audience is doing! This can be accomplished by asking them, monitoring relevant hashtags, or by listening to what they’re flat out telling you. You can then gauge their feelings and talk to them appropriately. Talking to students during the summer is different than during finals week.

Truly Listen

I’ve talked about truly listening to your audience before, but I’m going for it again. Sometimes you think you know what a problem is, or what an audience member is referencing, but if you jump to conclusions you could miss someone’s point quite easily, especially if you’re on Twitter and have a 140-character post to work with. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, or take the conversation to email if you need more information to understand what your audience member is trying to tell you.

Engage

Your audience wants to know you care. In higher education, that can be as simple as congratulating newly admitted students, answering questions about when food locations are open during spring break, or offering to answer questions of prospective students. Tell your audience you’re there for them in whatever capacity they need.

Story Time

I heard University of Cincinnati’s @PrezOno speak at EduWeb last year, and he told a story about a student who was upset that the vending machine was out of Cheez its. He listened to the complaint, and said he would find out why the vending machine was empty. And he followed through. His audience understands that he’s there for them, and reaches out regularly. He provides a perfect example of how to listen and engage with your audience. You can see this and more of Santa Ono’s presentation in the SlideShare below:

 

Retweet After Me: Week of Mar. 18, 2014

How To Adapt To The Changing Face Of Social Media Marketing by Carly Botelho

Social media marketing is an ever-evolving tool, allowing brands to interact directly with consumers. By engaging with these consumers on social media, brands often see more website traffic and will increase visibility. However, social media continues to change. Brands must understand the ways in which consumers use various platforms to achieve social media marketing success. Different demographics, attitudes, and behaviors affect which social media platforms consumers will use, how often they check them, and how engaged they are on them. Know your target audience and which social media channels they use – and how – to shape your social media campaign for success. Unfortunately, it’s not always quite that simple. As social media is constantly changing, so are consumers’ behaviors. [Read More]

29 Social Media Tools Recommended by the Pros by Cindy King

Are you looking for ways to enhance your social media marketing? Do you want new tools to simplify your job? We asked a group of social media pros for the hottest social media tools they use today. Check them out to see if these social media tools are a good fit for you! [Read More]

More than half of Millennials have shared a ‘selfie’ by Paul Taylor

Actress Ellen DeGeneres set out to create the most viral selfie ever on Oscar night and succeeded not just in capturing a celebrity moment but a digital one, too. Taking a “selfie” was relatively difficult to pull off before digital phones and cameras made them easy. Not surprisingly, the generation that has taken to them more than any other are the Millennials (ages 18 to 33), who have grown up with the new digital technologies of the 21st century. They’re the heaviest users of the internet, cell phones and social media sites. And a new Pew Research Center survey finds that 55% of Millennials have posted a “selfie” on a social media site; no other generation is nearly as inclined to do this. Overall, 26% of Americans have shared a “selfie” on a photo-sharing or social networking site. [Read More]

Google Analytics Checklist for New Projects by Geoff Kenyon

When on-boarding a new client, there is a lot that needs to get done. Usually the list includes a tech audit, reviewing content, and combing through back links to name a few tasks. A review of the analytics implementation is often overlooked though. [Read More]

How the top 10 US retailers use Pinterest by Christopher Ratcliff

Pinterest is used by more than 21% of all American adults. This is up from 15% on the previous year. This figure comes from the last study by Pew Research, which also states the even more incredible fact that one-third of all women in the USA use Pinterest. [Read More]

Retweet After Me: Week of Mar. 11, 2014

Social Media Crisis Management: A No-Nonsense Guide by Mack Collier

Past Social Media dramas involving The Red Cross, Groupon and Kenneth Cole are good reminders of the importance of having a solid social media crisis management plan in place. At its very basic level, the proper handling of a social media crisis should consist of two things. [Read More]

The first fully integrated polling and survey option on Tumblr by Nick Cicero

Social survey and VegasTechFund company Wedgies announced a partnership with Tumblr today bringing fully functional polls and surveys to publishers of the Yahoo owned microblogging platform. Tumblr users publish 94.1 million posts per day. And at least 70 percent of Tumblr’s users spend their time in the dashboard, or the backend where actual content creation takes place. Until now, publishers could not share a poll to Tumblr and have it work interactively on Tumblr blogs or in the Tumblr Dashboard. [Read More]

Free Design Resources To Upgrade Your Community Management Game by Tony Hymes

When you’re working in the digital world, companies spend a lot of time on design. Scratch that, in any world, companies spend a lot of time on design, for their branding, their products, their functions, everything. A community manager should do the same. [Read More]

‘Honest University Commercial’ Provides A Brutally Funny Education In Cost by William Goodman

While going to college or university can provide many with the tools they might need to succeed, it also tends to give people something far less worthwhile: lots of debt. Which is just part of what Ryan Higa, better known as Internet personality Nigahiga, pokes fun at in this parody college commercial above that plays upon all the cliches you’ve seen before in higher education advertisements and blends with tongue-in-cheek and far less ideal elements that come from pursuing a bachelors or otherwise. [Read More]

17 Rules of Engagement to Create a Love Affair Between Your Brand and Buyer by Barry Feldman

Yes, this is a story about building your business. The points I’ll make might appear to be about turning people on. They are indeed. We call this social media. It may seem I’m talking about courtship. I am. It’s often referred to as lead nurturing. You’ll gather my lesson here today is about commitment. Right you are. You can call that buying. [Read More]

Retweet After Me: Week of Mar. 4, 2014

What If Twitter Got a Lot More Useful? by Simon Dumenco

The U.K. division of Twitter is trying to draw attention to the platform’s potential as a customer-service provider with a blog post this morning announcing just such an effort from the telecom giant O2. For Twitter, making noise about O2’s #TweetServe is a way to signal that it is serious about broadening its mass appeal. Twitter needs to demonstrate that it has utility beyond serving as, well, a news feed, a source of celebrity musings and a place to talk about TV. That whole social TV phenomenon, for one thing, isn’t necessarily as white-hot as it used to be, as my colleague Cotton Delo recently reported. [Read More]

Questions about badges in higher ed by Sheryl Grant

Amy McQuigge’s prompt How can colleges and universities use badges? is a lot more slope of enlightenment and a little less peak of inflated expectations when it comes to badges in higher ed (Looking at you, major media sources.) The disruptive potential of badges in higher ed makes for compelling headlines, but the real nuts-and-bolts innovation is happening at ground level. I thought I would contribute something to Amy’s question by taking a look at the variety of badge systems being designed for colleges and universities. I started with HASTAC’s higher ed tag in the Badges for Lifelong Learning topic on Scoop.it, but please add others I may have missed in the comments section below. [Read More]

Reconsidering the Social Media Hub by Georgy Cohen

One of my favorite projects when working at Tufts University was leading the creation of our social media hub, a custom-built page which hosted feeds from all of our social media accounts and served as an at-a-glance destination for campus social chatter. I was (and still am) extremely proud of what we built. [Read More]

Top 7 things successful brands do on Twitter by Katerina Petropoulou

Twitter is a powerful tool of engagement and brands are well aware of that, as more and more are now using the network for customer support and marketing. There’ve even been brands that did not hesitate to “fight” over a customer on Twitter! So there’s definitely a lot to learn from brands’ best Twitter practices. Let’s take a look at 7 things successful brands do on Twitter and you can do too, starting today. [Read More]

Beyond tweeting: Demystifying the social media editor by Ricardo Bilton

While the popular perception of the social media editor is a fresh-out-of-college intern sitting on Twitter all day, the now-ubiquitous role is more complicated than that — and more important. “Twitter and Facebook have become far more powerful tools for getting traffic, so the shift has become more focused on how to take advantage of social media to improve the site’s traffic and readership,” said Jeremy Stahl, Slate’s social media editor since 2010. [Read More]

Retweet After Me: Week of Feb. 25, 2014

Top 2014 #highered Web and Social Conferences & Events by Karine Joly

Every year I publish a post with my selection of top higher ed conferences and events. Since 2006 I’ve spent a lot time thinking, reviewing, attending and some time presenting at higher ed conferences. When you run a professional school like Higher Ed Experts, it’s important to stay on top of what happened in the conference world. As many of you only get to go to one conference per year due to limited budgets, many often ask me for recommendations about the best fit for their specific professional development needs. [Read More]

How to Do Holidays on Social Media Right by Elizabeth Harper

Every time a holiday or big event rolls around, we see companies trying to make holiday social-media tie-ins that can range from successful to strange. While it’s easy to make social blunders by trying to appropriate a holiday into a promotion, this doesn’t mean you need to stay quiet during any holiday season. As long as you know the holiday and your customer base, you can jump into the holiday chatter without making a mess — whether it’s Valentine’s Day this week or something else. [Read More]

14 Tools To Help You Add Images For Your Social Media Posts by Belle Beth Cooper

It wasn’t long ago that Twitter added inline image previews to its official apps, including the web view. Now, Twitter is including more image focus in the latest redesign, as you can see above. On the left-hand side of Twitter’s new web view, your profile and header images are now visible. [Read More]

Why and how to get access to Twitter Analytics for your #highered account by Karine Joly

Last week in the online course I teach about social media marketing for higher ed we discussed social media analytics strategy and practices with our class composed of professionals working in universities and colleges in the US, Canada and France. I’ve had updated the course module materials – as I always do before a session – to include the latest news and features my students should know about. And, I had decided to add, at the last minute, a link to Twitter Analytics. [Read More]

Good News for Creepers: LinkedIn Upgrades “Who Viewed Your Profile” Feature by Corey Eridon

I mean creepers in the most loving way. Some of my best friends are creepers. (Ask her, she won’t deny it.) We all know the “Who Viewed Your Profile” LinkedIn feature. It’s part of a little ego-exercise we take part in each week where we validate just how important we already know we are, and bask in the glory of being stalked by higher-ups that are definitely messaging us right now to offer us the job of a lifetime. [Read More]