Our overarching 2013 goals
I just finished writing the 2013 major goals for the #UMSocial department. Yes, now I have to actually write how we’re going to achieve those goals, but I thought that I would share them, in the interest of openness and also the hope that you’ll share too.
1. Become a thought leader in higher education social media.
2. Be responsive in our actions and empathetic in our reactions.
3. Stay at the forefront of new tools and technology.
4. Serve as a resource for all U-M students, faculty and staff to educate and provide social media tools for success.
5. Facilitate the continuing implementation of the hub and spoke system to optimize social media practices across the university.
6. Combine marketing and communication goals with intellectual research and thinking.
7. Engage in conversations around the Michigan brand wherever we can.
8. Set measurable goals and use current and future data to attain them.
9. Work as an integral part of the overall communications team.
What are you planning for 2013?
Hub & Spoke, Dick Costolo, and how to do Twitter.
On Monday afternoon I was insansely lucky enough to spend time with Twitter CEO Dick Costolo, as well as super-smart staff members Omid Ashtari and Neil Shah (a U-M alum!). Sometimes I have to pinch myself. Really.
See the Twitter bird behind me? Cool!
I wanted to share some of the more interesting nuggets that I walked away with, since I realize that this isn’t a common opportunity.
1. Higher Ed social media management should be hub and spoke. That’s good news for us at Michigan, since that’s how we’re set up currently. It’s important that units have autonomy and the ability to make decisions, but that there’s a central department/person responsible for setting the global strategy and ensuring that new practices are implemented correctly.
Pinterest: Images Rule for Higher Ed. Believe the Hype.
I’ve written before on the blog about how we’re shifting our social media strategy toward a much more audio/visual method of storytelling, and I’ve already seen the results in the numbers on Facebook.
There’s also currently the Instagrammer Contest that we’re running. I’ve gotten quite a few submissions, which is really neat. We’ll still be accepting submissions (in the form of a Followgram.me, Tumblr or Flickr URL) through June 1, so get ‘em in!
But here’s the meat of this post: Pinterest. I’ve been on Pinterest for a while, but up until a few months ago, I was doing what pretty much everyone was doing on Pinterest: Dreaming about decorating/design/gardens/weddings/parties/wardrobes.
Then one day my personal inbox started blowing up with people following me on Pinterest. It was very confusing. Why on earth would anyone want to know what shoes I’m wearing for my wedding? And then came the articles: SHOULD YOUR BRAND BE ON PINTEREST? IS PINTEREST A FAD? IF YOU DON’T USE PINTEREST ARE YOU THE WORST SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER EVER?
So I put the U-M on Pinterest. (our username is universityofmichigan)
I started actually putting some work into it a week or so ago, and my umich inbox exploded with messages (see below — people following, repinning — it’s insane). I’ve hardly even started pinning and already we have hundreds of followers; each of our boards has at least 100 followers, some have 200 or more.
Facebook: Insights into Bob’s Truck
When I met with a strategist from Facebook last week, he took one look at our main page and said, “You need more photos.”
“How many more is more?”
“I’d say at least fifty percent,” he said.
“Oh. Wow. Oops.”
So last night I did a little number crunching. Actually, I did a lot of number crunching. Four hours of spreadsheet-diving, formula-making hardcore analysis of all of our posts from 01/16-14/16 of this year. And you know what posts get the most engagement by a longshot?
(pause for obvious answer)
Our highest engagement activity was in March when I posted “Bob’s Truck.”
1766 likes, 107 comments, 225 shares. It also had a very high level of viral impressions, even though the initial reach wasn’t that high.
Our community just went crazy for it. And it makes sense. Not only is it a heartwarming story, it’s a big, beautiful image that shows exactly what our school, our brand, our fans… what Michigan stands for.
Here are some of my favorite comments:
And it’s not just Bob’s Truck. Every time we post a photo, we get high positive and low negative engagement. Plus, as the strategist from Facebook put it, it makes our page look more like a magazine.
So I’ve changed our strategy: 50% photos, 40% video and conversation starters, 10% links. I’ll keep you in the loop.