The intent of this article is not to define the parameters of, or assign value to social media — but rather to identify unique use cases within the higher education environment where social media has been utilized.
At Inigral, the majority of our conversations with colleges and universities are dedicated to establishing the differences between the many uses of social media on campus. The stigma we most often face is rooted in the belief that social media tools like Facebook and Twitter are “checkboxes on a checklist,” and once you create your institution’s Facebook Page, you can check off the “Facebook” checkbox.
Everyone is using Twitter to engage their community in less than 140 characters. But not many departments have come to rely on the microblog as their primary communications channel with students. Florida State University’s Mike Sklens has led the charge in incorporating social media into the Admissions and Records department’s day-to-day workflow. And through leveraging Twitter as a customer service hotline, their department has cut their response time in half.
When we visit websites, we have the option to tell that website who we are by signing up for their service, or logging into their dashboard. And it’s been this way since I can remember browsing the web in the late 90s when “You’ve Got Mail” was a household saying.
But Facebook is changing the way we interact with the internet by allowing websites to know who you are before you ever fill out any information on that site. It’s called Instant Personalization, and while it’s not taking the web by storm thanks to Facebook learning from previous poorly-planned product launches, it is surely a representation of the future of the web.