The Importance of Incorporating Social Media

I will be teaming up to help design a social media and marketing strategy for the Health Promotion and Wellness, and Human Development departments and the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point.  I believe that the reason a solid social media strategy has not been established for either of these programs, or the College of Professional Studies in general, is because few people have an understanding of what a social media strategy would entail and how a program could benefit from one.  Using this document, I will address any concerns or questions that may be raised during my Social Media Strategy presentation in order to ease the minds of those who are unsure or worried about any negative feedback that may come from using social media.

 

Below are the following concerns with a social media strategy that have been expressed:

1.)    Who will you invite to the social media strategy presentation?

It’s important to remember the students in this case, because they are why we are all here. I would make sure to invite students from each year of schooling (Freshman-Senior) to get their feedback on whether they think something like this would be beneficial and to get their input on what a social media strategy should contain.  I would also invite the coordinators for each program within the College of Professional Studies (CPS) as well as the CPS dean.

 

2.)    What is someone within the College leaks private information or tarnishes the reputation of the CPS by using their own personal social media accounts?

Issues like this would be fully addressed in our well written social media policy, which would serve as a contract for all those involved in a program from students to faculty.  The appropriate punishment would be outlined within the policy to cover any misdemeanor that may arise.  The key is to maintain an up to date social media policy as social media and its abilities change so there is no wiggle room or loopholes.

 

3.)    Won’t maintaining a social media site be time consuming?  Do we need to hire someone to manage these sites and if so, how are we supposed to pay them?  What if I don’t use any social media in my personal life and have no idea how to use it?

First, it is important for everyone to be aware that no one will be required to learn how to use Facebook, Twitter, etc. if they don’t want to.  Furthermore, it will not be required for staff to use social media during or after the workday.  The most logical thing to do would be to have a group of people volunteer to maintain a social media strategy and use it throughout each program.  That way, the strategy is still well maintained, but not everyone has to have a hand in it if they don’t want to.  However, education on tools such as TweetDeck and HootSuite, which allow you to preprogram tweets and posts that will be uploaded at decided upon times, would lessen the load of maintaining the social media sites, making it easier for anyone to do if they wish to.

 

4.)    Won’t allowing students and staff to post freely in social media sites open us up to lawsuits?

Again, our social media strategy wouldn’t be open to just anyone to post and blog, and within our social media policy, measures would be taken to insure that each social media website remains integral and respected by everyone who creates and maintains it.  The policy will clearly outline what can and what CAN NOT be said on a social media website that is directed to or representing the CPS.

 

5.)    Social media is a passing fad and not worth our time and energy.

Actually, it is just the opposite.  I would put this fear to rest by presenting various statistics and data that actually show that the amount of people who are using social media as gone up substantially, and they are spending far more minutes on social media sites collectively than ever before.  Not only are people communicating with family and friends on these sites, but there has also been an increase in the amount of “likes” and “shares” happening between people and the products and services that they use.

 

6.)    How could having a social media strategy help UW Stevens Point and the CPS in the future?

What I would suggest would be to form a group of students to gather information about what High School Students are looking for in a College Campus, and more specially in a Health Promotion or Human Development curriculum.  That way, the social media strategy can better market to prospective students who have expressed interest in our campus and hopefully convince them that UW Stevens Point would be the best place for them!

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1 Comment

  1. Hi Kayla.

    First, very good job. You provided enough detail for me to understand the reasons why you are presenting your buy-in argument and you addressed the concerns. Great job.

    I would like to offer some suggestions. First, list let me address point number one.

    1.) Who will you invite to the social media strategy presentation?

    It’s important to remember the students in this case, because they are why we are all here. I would make sure to invite students from each year of schooling (Freshman-Senior) to get their feedback on whether they think something like this would be beneficial and to get their input on what a social media strategy should contain. I would also invite the coordinators for each program within the College of Professional Studies (CPS) as well as the CPS dean.

    Because this is a strategy meeting and should involve C-Level Personnel, Administration who will be involved and Department Heads, at this point I don’t really feel students should be involved. You are presenting a buy-in presentation to the people I just mentioned so they can see the reasons for implementing a social media program. You will then develop the strategy, present it again to the same people to ensure you are all on the same page. After the strategy is approved then you will have a meeting “to share” the strategy with students, staff and any consultants involved.

    Second, let’s address one sentence in point number 4.

    “The policy will clearly outline what can and what CAN NOT be said on a social media website that is directed to or representing the CPS. ”

    As I mentioned and equally stressed, a social media engagement policy is not a leadership or management policy. It is not an HR Manual. And you cannot tell people what they can or cannot say on social media sites. Your social media engagement policy is to share with those who are involved with managing your online community guidelines on what they cannot share such as intellectual property, roll out dates of new products or services, etc. You cannot infringe on their employee rights to organize and basically complain about work. Please review the National Labor Board Review information I shared in class. Ford, Costco and other companies have come under strict scrutiny and legal trouble when it comes to not adhering to the NLRB laws. Most of these companies and universities that developed social media engagement policies as if they were a HR Manual have found themselves rewriting some of their engagement policies. The policies are to enhance the value of the brand via good communication with your online community and brand evangelist. Your brand ambassadors will share your enthusiasm in maintaining the integrity of the brand while communicating online. They will be asked not to share information that could harm the brand, such as intellectual or trade secrets. They will be asked not to be a bully or participate in bullying. And most of all they will be trained on how to manage on line criticism of the brand such as service complaints.

    So, I know this is a long comment, but just want to stress the reasons why you are having the buy-in presentation. The people who should be involved during the buy-in presentation and more importantly, the people who should be involved during the development and implementation stages of the social media strategy.

    You did a great job on your assignment!

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