This year at the annual NAFSA conference in Houston, our very own Kayla Patterson, GoMedia Coordinator here at GoAbroad.com, co-presented a poster session about a survey distributed to international education organizations on SECUSS-L. The survey sought to discover the current uses and thoughts about social media in the field of international education, and yielded a total of 86 respondents.
Out of all of the social media platforms that are available, the top three used by the respondents are Facebook (94.2%), Twitter (64%), and YouTube (62.8%). Some examples of ways that these programs utilize these platforms to engage their audiences include but are not limited to: blog posts, updates on events, scholarships, posting student interviews/videos, sharing promotional videos, and frequently adding Facebook posts. The most prominent response to social media management is increased fans or followers (81% responded yes to experiencing an increase); while 50% said that they had increased website traffic.
Although these numbers are good, some could be much better. Some comments from the respondents were about the lack of time or staff to increase the effectiveness of social media. 47.1% of respondents said that they spend between 0-7 hours each week on social media sites and the people who manage them are usually full-time employees with other responsibilities.
As a result of this survey, GoMedia is suggesting that more time and commitment to social media is crucial if your target market is to be reached efficiently. Facebook is now becoming the new Google for Generation Y and it is imperative that international educators get on board with social media if they wish to connect with potential students, current students, and alumni.
GoMedia offers many services that are specifically geared towards actively and strategically engaging in online marketing for international education organizations. For more information, or if you have questions, please contact our GoMedia Coordinator, Kayla Patterson at email@example.com.