Social media is becoming an essential tool in education. Whether you’re trying to attract potential parents, introduce social media into lessons, interact with alumni, build the school community or share news, it is crucial to have shareable, engaging content. We have put together 8 tips and tricks to improve your content and get the most out of social media.
1. Choose the right platform
Choosing the right platforms can be tricky, you need to consider your marketing goals, the content you are producing, your audience and your resources.
When considering your marketing goals, be sure to account for platforms that promote brand awareness vs creating engagement. For example, Twitter is a great choice for starting conversations with prospective parents whilst instagram can showcase the visuals of your school e.g. the grounds and facilities.
Consider the type of content you can produce. Instagram and Pinterest will work well for sharing photos and short videos with little text, whilst Facebook and blogs can engage readers with heavier text to photo ratio.
Your audience will play a part when choosing which platforms to be active on. You will need a different approach when reaching out to parents vs pupils. Your students may value Youtube videos whilst parents may be more communicative and accessible on Facebook.
Knowing what your team can do also plays a large role in choosing platforms. Is there even any body that can create video content for Youtube? Can anybody dedicate their time to be highly responsive on Twitter for all real-time enquiries? Does your team have the knowledge, experience and time to change formats and tones between multiple social medias?
A short breakdown:
- Facebook is great for schools, regardless of the content they choose to post.
- Twitter should only be used if a dedicated member of staff or team can commit to monitoring the platform. There will need to be lots of up to date posts, photos, videos and conversation of current and local topics. There will also need to be knowledge of hashtags.
- Instagram is great for visual appeal and easily accessible via mobile. Also, there is significant age diversity on Instagram, so you can reach most audiences.
- Linkedin is great for reaching alumni, keeping your staff connected, sharing blogs (articles), recruiting staff or sharing news.
- Youtube is perfect for video sharing; everyday, billions of hours of content is viewed- mostly by 13-18 year olds.
2. Schedule your posts
Staying active and having a consistent presence on social media is extremely important. But, the time and dedication needed to keep this up can be near impossible for busy schools. Inconsistency and absence from social media can lead to lost followers and negative audience perception. By automatically scheduling your social media posts you can stay active even when you are not available to post. Find out about Shareable Schools dashboard here; schedule and monitor all content from one space.
3. Post at the right time
You may be producing the greatest content ever, but if you aren’t posting at the optimal times nobody will see your great work. Posting at prime times will increase engagement – likes, comments and shares. If you are posting content on a platform targeted at parents, you are better off posting in the evening rather than during the busy school run, for example.
4. Quality over quantity
Although it is important to post frequently, the quality of your content must be of high quality and relevance for your audience to stay engaged. To keep up with frequency demands you can recycle your quality content weekly or bi-weeky; this will also ensure those who missed it the first time round sees it eventually.
Hashtags organise conversations worldwide! If you want to find a topic you will find it with a hashtag! They also serve the purpose of increasing visibility of your content and encourage your audiences to join your conversations. Last year, Twitter reported that tweets with hashtags can increase engagement by almost 100% for individuals and 50% for brands. Also, Hubspot discovered that tweets including hashtags are more likely to get retweets. Get hashtagging!
6. Ask questions
One of the best ways to get your audience engaged with your content is to ask them questions! Social media algorithms reward comments higher value than likes, so get your followers talking! Asking questions can be great for market research too. For example, asking which sports clubs or facilities pupils like best can focus budgets on expansion or give valuable insights on which areas to improve on.
7. Use captivating visuals
Paragraphs of text are for books and blogs, not for social media! Posts with visuals get more attention than those without. Videos on social media platforms have seen an increase in recent years; algorithms favour them for prime newsfeed space due to their high engagement rates. Try to always add a photo and if appropriate (mostly content for pupils) a few emoji’s too.
Note- do not just add any random photo for the sake of it, it must have relevance to your post.
8. Have a consistent voice
Your voice tells your brand’s story. Your message needs to be clear and consistent across all channels. Social media is ideal for brand building and recognition; each of your posts must reflect your brand and image. This can be an issue if you have multiple people contributing to the running of your social media as each different person will their own spin on language and personality.
How can I get more help with my social media content?
This article is a great starting guide for your content, yet there is much to learn. Find out how Shareable can help your school here or contact us today.