The question: “So why setup a private social network vs. just using MySpace or Facebook? That’s where all the students are anyway.”
Adrienne’s answer: “Because I said so;)”
A much better answer: Provided by my long-time friend and colleague, TargetX’s own Kevin Corr. Hopefully he’ll forgive me, as I have used my creative license to condense parts of it (that Kevin, he’s a talker;)
Good question! The idea behind it is to engage in the conversation in your own space (or on your own turf!).
In a lot of ways, having your own social network versus using Facebook or MySpace is the internet equivalent of inviting students to campus to chat with you versus hanging out at the mall.
It’s not that it can’t be done, but there is a perception among Millennial students that those networks are, in fact, “their space,” and you don’t necessarily belong there.
Not that they don’t want to talk to you; they just don’t always want to do it in that arena.
Also, technically speaking, both Facebook and MySpace have some distinct institutional disadvantages.
Facebook, which is a little more institution friendly, is also very Spartan: there is not a lot of branding opportunity available.
MySpace, which is much more “brandable,” is not very institution friendly.
In the end, the goal is not to drive students away from other social networks or to keep them from talking about you on other networks (the fact is, they’ll always be having side conversations about your school).
The goal is to provide an opportunity for you to greet students at your front door, rather than the places they hang out.
Hope this helps!
Kevin will be presenting on the use of social networks and blogs in admissions at this Thursday’s Xpert Summit. No doubt it will be a great discussion.
If you can’t make it, be sure to visit TargetX’s new Knowledge Center. I’ll be posting Xpert Summit content and opening up groups and discussions to continue the conversations.
Have a question for TargetX or other Admissions colleagues? Post it to the Forum!
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