Consider messages, audiences, goals and your strategy for keeping information timely. Some audiences may be on one social media platform and not another, and some sites provide more flexibility than others. It is time-consuming to maintain more than one social media site at a time so choose carefully. Creating a content calendar can also help organize postings and ensure that you won’t forget to post new content.

When possible, identify an appointed employee or student, responsible for social media content and monitoring. If responsibility is not assigned, new content might not be posted, and the site will wither and die. As your site grows, you will also need someone familiar with the site to attest what is and isn’t working for your audience.

A common misconception about social media is that if you build a site, people will automatically come. Fill your new site with content, so your site doesn’t feel empty. When you launch, announce it through your traditional channels: email, newsletter, and website. New audience members may not participate right away, but let them know you value their presence by sending them a welcome message or thank you for joining. Oftentimes, people don’t want to be the first to break the ice, so try and recruit friends or co-workers to stimulate the discussion.

Social media is meant for two-way communication. You do not want to be a robot that only spits out content and does not reciprocate communication. People Google or read the news to get information, but people visit social media sites to interact with other people. Welcome new audience members, respond to comments or follow up a posting with a question about the content. Engaging with your members will also make your site more valuable to them and keep them coming back.

Most people who maintain social media sites welcome comments—it builds credibility and community. Consider posting a disclaimer or comment policy to let audience members know what is and isn’t appropriate. On some social media platforms, you can set your site so that you can review and approve comments before they appear. This allows you to respond in a timely way. It also allows you to delete spam comments and to block any individuals who repeatedly post offensive or frivolous comments.

Make use of analytics to evaluate posting activity and interaction within a social media site. Facebook has built-in analytics for pages. This tool helps you to refine your strategy and better understand your audience’s preferences and behaviors.

Help Adelphi keep its online community connected. If you currently have a social media site or are looking to start a new one, contact University Communications and Marketing at social@adelphi.edu. UCOMM can assist you in reviewing multimedia to ensure its content represents Adelphi accurately.

Stephanie Cryan

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Levermore Hall 205

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