Why do schools and colleges produce student blogs when any prospective student can find a real student on Facebook, make a friend, send a message with questions or read their “wall?” Faux social media is always faux and prospective students see right through it.
Still, research might tell you your student blogs or tweets are a huge hit with some audiences, not so much with others. Maybe that student blog isn’t attracting prospective students, but maybe families or recent graduates like it. If you knew that, would you change the blog’s topics? A little more poking around might also help you identify those occasional nuggets that have the potential to gain more interest from target groups. The trick is to segment the data into something meaningful.
Your online audience is complex, unique to you, curious and remarkably diverse. There are many tools which make it easier for you to know a great deal about them, how interested they are in you, and why. Are you talking to parents, press, or students? Are you speaking to alumni/ae in India or Indiana? Are you hoping to engage with donors with specific initiatives or just a few loyals? By segmenting your audience and speaking more effectively and authentically to smaller groups—especially if they are groups you value and want to know more about, you’ll waste less time and effort and make a stronger impression.
You can track which blog posts or tweets are getting the most play with tools like Topsy, Google Analytics and True Social Metrics, even Facebook’s Insights. And it doesn’t have to be terribly complicated.
Interested in learning more? Let us know.
PHOTO: Greg Wass