In the education industry, whether you work for an elementary school, college, or school district, embracing social media can be a scary feat. However, it can also be an exciting opportunity to reach your students in a new way! As you probably know, students aren’t the only audience for your social media sites. That’s why today’s 4 tips come in the form of your 4 primary audience members: students, teachers, parents, and the community.
1. Students: Embrace the Visual
If your students are old enough to be on social media, they probably fall into the age group that prefers visual media. According to Pew, 52% of teenagers use Instagram and 41% use Snapchat. Both of these platforms are image-centric and mobile-based. And as for young adults, 18-29 year olds make up 53% of Instagram’s demographics and 71% of Snapchat users are under 25! If you want to reach your students where they are spending the most time, create an Instagram or Snapchat account.
Some ideas to help you get started on these visual platforms include:
- Photos from sporting events
- Classroom photos
- “Draw Our Mascot” contest
- Weekly teacher spotlight
2. Teachers: Link Up on LinkedIn
If you need a new and unique way to engage with teachers and staff, encourage them to create LinkedIn accounts. Your school or district can then create a private LinkedIn group for them to join. Within this LinkedIn group, teachers can share ideas, stories, and event information.
Since LinkedIn is the more professional social media site, teachers won’t have to worry about linking their more private and personal social profiles to the school. Instead, this LinkedIn group would offer a proficient and secure way for teachers and administrators to interact.
3. Parents: Create a Facebook Page for Announcements
Since Facebook is the most popular social media channel with 1.44 billion users, it is probably your best bet for reaching parents. 77% of adult females and 66% of adult males are currently on Facebook (Sproutsocial), making it the biggest site for the demographic. Creating a Facebook page for your school, district, etc., will help you manage your public image on social media.
Once you create a Facebook page, encourage parents to like it by sending out e-newsletters, bulletins, and discussing it in parent-teacher meetings. Letting the parents know that you will be active on the Facebook page, posting important updates about events as well as images during the school day, will encourage them to like your page. Since people are turning to social media for real-time news updates, why not make your Facebook that real-time outlet for parents?
4. Community: Tweet about Trends
The community at-large cares about your school just as much as the next person! Whether a community member is an alumni, has a cousin who attends, or lives a block away from the school, they have reason to care about what is going on there. Twitter is all about quick snippets of important information, which is exactly what the community is interested in! From who won the basketball game to when the Homecoming parade is, community members want to be in-the-know about things happening in their community.
Create a Twitter account and work to keep it updated with relevant and important information. You can also easily engage with community members on Twitter and be the first to know if they have a complaint about something. Twitter is often used for customer service purposes and having eyes on your account at all times will help solve issues before they even arise.
Now that you are familiar with your 4 key audiences and what they are looking for on social media, it is time to create your strategy! If you need assistance with developing a social media strategy or managing your social accounts, contact Informatics.
View the rest of the education digital marketing blogs from this month: