Social Media in Higher Education

By Josh Lawson | @JoshKLawson

 

Social media can be a hard concept to grasp. Most people say you need to be a master in something before you try to teach it to others. That way you can reword difficult concepts to students who don’t understand it. The medium of social media is constantly evolving and expanding. It’s often used in higher education to offer social CRM, but for students. It humanizes professors and can give a sense of ownership on the content we create.

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The fact that social media is changing means that whoever teaches it needs to evolve with it. The platforms will change, but the basics will always stay the same, but that doesn’t mean it still isn’t a time-consuming industry. You constantly have monitor several different account and hashtags, learn everything that changes with each update, and experiment with new features that each platform offers.

Many students, faculty, and sometimes even professionals have no idea how to use any aspect of social media. This means there is a huge disconnect between the brand and the consumers. The most successful accounts on social media platforms are those who show the most personality in their content, have a social CRM strategy, and act like an actual person instead of a computer generating lackluster content.

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Someone who teaches social media needs to have an excellent grasp on every concept surrounding the different platforms, rather than just the numbers and analytic data about them. Yes, that information helps, but not as much as hearing what it’s actually like to work in the industry using those tools and those platforms.

The information learned from someone who has professionally worked in the social media industry is invaluable. Those skills cannot be learned anywhere else. There is something completely different about learning vicariously from someone’s experience than learning from a PowerPoints and TEDtalks without trying to explain those any further.

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The skills learned with social media are based in customer service, public relations, journalism, and ethics. We learn these skills leading up to this course, or at least some of those skills. We don’t need to be learning the data and statistics for these platforms, but rather we need to be learning how to use social media in the real world.

Stay LinkedIn!

By: Nathan Cooper

LinkedIn was founded in 2002 and since then it has only boosted in popularity! It is a social networking site that has the intention of letting individuals build a professional online presence as well as networking with others for professional gain. LinkedIn has become a very common way for people seeking employment to find a job and for employers to hire. There is even a apply now button on some companies job listings page. This allows for a quick and simple way to apply without having to jump through all the hoops one might have to if they did a normal application.

LinkedIn also offers a variety of features such a groups and premium that allow people utilizing the sight to get more out of it. Groups are formed by people who share common interests and are a way to make connections. There are many different ways to use groups, but the most common one is for people in the same profession to network and possibly exchange information. The premium account is most useful for those currently applying for jobs. The premium account gives you access to information such as how much you meet the criteria for a particular position and where you stand among other current applicants. This feature allows for people to be a little more strategic when applying to different positions. Strategies are the name of the game when using any social media platform so this should be no different for LinkeIn. Make sure you know what your objectives and goals are and then you can form viable strategies and tactics for them.

Make sure you utilize this platform to its’ full potential and remember to stay LinkedIn!

Sources:

  1. “A Brief History of LinkedIn.” A Brief History of LinkedIn. N.p., n.d. Web. 26 Mar. 2017.

Pinterest and Pork Chops by Devunta Turner

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When I initially heard about Pinterest I was a senior in high school and that was in the fall of 2011 and the spring of 2012. At first I didn’t pay much attention to it. I would hear a few girls talk about it and they would talk about pinning stuff to boards and fashion and things of that nature…so quite naturally I thought Pinterest was for girls and I thought it was extremely boring. I definitely did not have any intentions on ever getting one. My friend Tayler showed me her Pinterest and I just remember being utterly confused. It looked so boring and it looked like a waste of time. I actually told her that and then she told me that it really is only for girls. I left it alone.

So lets fast forward to my sophomore year of college. I am in the barbershop getting my haircut and my barber is having a conversation with some of the men that are waiting to get their haircut. I’m not really listening that closely but I am paying attention to bits and pieces of the conversation and they begin to talk about food….they had complete attention. My baber began to describe all of the food he had cooked and it sounded amazing. Really amazing. I was thinking to myself..”How on earth did he learn to cook all of these things?”. But before I could even think to ask the question out loud somebody else asked and he said he got a lot of his recipes off of Pinterest. When he said that  I was shocked. I was shocked because I thought pinterest was for women only and I just never thought my barber would ever have one and actually use it. But the fact that he had one made Pinterest seem kind of interesting. My barber actually brought pinterest up a few more times and actually suggested that I get one. At first I was wasn’t too sure, but one day in one of my journalism classes I became bored and I actually made one and I began to create boards and I started pinning things. The first board I made was food related of course. I think one of my first pins was a pork chop recipe that I really want to make, Ill get back to the pork chops later.

After I made my Pinterest, I felt dumb for thinking it was just for women. Pinterest is awesome and has a variety of things for both men and women. Deep down in my heart I knew I was not the only man on Pinterest, I actually felt like there were just as many man on Pinterest as there were women. In fact according to  SocialMediaToday 1/3 of all Pinterest signups are men. They even said that in places such as India, Japan and Korea that the ratio of male to female users of Pinterest is 50/50. TechCrunch claims that there are more men in the United States are using Pinterest than there are reading Sports Illustrated and GQ combined. Obviously Pinterest is very popular among men.

Now back to those pork chops. The pork chops are said to be the best pork chops you will ever taste and I can not wait to try them. I recently went to Wal-Mart and bought all of the ingredients for them. Now, I just need to find time to actually make them. I truly hope they are good as they say they will be. I think I might post them on my Facebook or Instagram if they turn out good. Feel free to follow me on pinterest @ DevuntaTurner

Fired Because of Social Media

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by Kimsua Lam

In the trash bin you go if careless grammatical errors riddle your resume, or poor judgment makes an appearance when choosing a username for your email address to use for professional purposes. Those were my thoughts a few years ago as I searched for new hires to bring on to my team. It’s astounding how little shame some people have when they choose to use email addresses with usernames like “downa5sgurl” or “playafolyfe” as contacts for professional resumes.

I can guarantee at least a dozen resumes made friends with crumpled up wrappers from lunch, old chewing gum, empty boxes that once held office supplies, and – oh yeah – neglect.

About a year later, I was helping one of my peers search for a new office manager. We went as far as researching the candidate’s social media networks and anything else we could find about the person on the internet. And let me tell you, they play a big factor in the decision-making process. I would say about eight out of ten resumes were discarded because of something we found online that didn’t coincide with professionalism.

Even the “personality” that is perceived on your social media accounts can affect whether or not you get hired for a job. If your posts are always dark and depressing and mostly entail you complaining about things, do you really think an employer would feel motivated to hire you right away? Or would it make more sense to hire someone with a good attitude because that good energy will translate into good customer service skills?

These are the questions you should ask yourself when posting about your “personal” life because your “personal” life may not be as private as you think.

I find that the younger generation has a harder time coming to grips with that kind of reality because social media has become a strong platform for freedom of speech. Opinions fly left and right without heed or caution. Privacy levels provide a “shield” for photos and posts that may not want to make friends with the public. But, unbeknownst to them, anything on the internet can be retrieved.

Take for example, the comments of McDonald’s employees in response to a customer’s video that entailed calling the customer a “low life” and recommending she “go run on a treadmill.” Even though the video post was done by the customer, the comments these McDonald’s employees made were what cost them their jobs. These remarks are blatantly rude and unprofessional – where did common sense go?

Regardless of whether or not your employment is at a fast food restaurant or at a job that may not fall into the lines of the work you’d like to be in once you graduate, the actions and remarks you make can determine the life of your career in the future.

Urban Outfitters vs Media

Brianna Neal

I honestly did not have a clue what I would talk about today. All I could think to do is research public relations fails, and see if an idea could spark from that. The very first “public relations fail” was the very famous issue over Urban Outfitters designing a Kent State University sweatshirt that was covered in what seems to be blood. This statement was instantly seen by many who backlashed due to the history of Kent State in the 1970s where a protest got out of hand and someone shot and killed students of the University. After much concerns from people across the nation Urban Outfitters instantly took back the sweatshirt, and apologized for the exposure.

Below is a picture of the sweat- shirt that Urban Outfitters released.

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I started to scroll and read other failures in the PR world, but this one really caught my attention. I then decided to investigate more about Urban Outfitters and other offensive (trying to act as if I’m an FBI agent) designs they have made before this horrific statement.

It didn’t take me long to find out that Urban Outfitters indeed has done some major damage with making offensive clothing designs. Urban Outfitters has featured a shirt that showed in big letters the word “depression”, released a shirt that featured a star that was close to the Nazi symbol and have even made a shirt saying “Eat Les” which caused an uproar with celebrities wanting to boycott.

After reading all of this eventually a question forms. What is there deal? And why are they doing this?

Their deal is a pretty obvious one, Urban Outfitters wants to have attention, publicity. So people who notice these things will come in shop and buy. That previous statement also answered the why. Although it seems like a crazy way of doing things, it is actually working.

It turns out that in the year 2014 Urban Outfitters managed to hit a record in company sales of $811 million.

How on Earth is this company able to keep the profit up with such offensive clothing? Well according to an article on Time.com it is said that the new Generation is not focused on advertisements and other small things. No, nowadays children of this generation need a little scare factor. These offensive, and the down right bad publicity stunts are the very thing helping this company make a lot of money.

So now the question now becomes, has social media lost us completely that we now have to offend people to get attention or have we set a new standard on what is ethical in our world today.

Difference in the Memes by Devunta Turner

I think it is very important for me to start to say I do not condone the actions of any

neither Bill Cosby nor Jared Fogle. Now that I got that out of the way I can delve into the social

media aspect of these situations. First, I would like to start with the Bill Cosby situation. When

the story first broke it was all over news media and social media. This controversy caused great

debate everywhere, especially on Facebook. People were going back and forth over whether or

not Bill Cosby was innocent. Of course social media had to provide some type of entertainment

in the form of memes. Almost immediately social media platforms like Instagram, Tumblr, and

Twitter became inundated with memes of Cosby and what he had done. It seems as though

through memes everyone had automatically assumed he was guilty of these crimes that he was

being accused of  before any official judgement of his guilt had come. I noticed how people

condemned him and wrote him off. Through social media I saw his legacy as one of the greatest

television fathers in the history of tv get erased. I also noticed how vocal celebrities on social

media were. I think that is the part that shocked me the most. It shocked me because I did not

expect responses from celebrities, especially some of his former co-stars from The Cosby show.

This was serious on social media. They drug this controversy on for months with endless memes

and videos, and it only got worse when it came out that he admitted to using Quaaludes.

Now, I want to shift gears and talk about the Jared Fogle/Subway scandal and how it was

treated on social media from my perspective. I personally feel like social media went easy on

Jared Fogle scandal. Even though the evidence and things were found early on, it seemed as

though people on social media and even on the news outlets were not as harsh as they were when

they were covering the Bill Cosby situation. I also feel like, in a weird way, that people didn’t

think the Jared Fogle scandal wasn’t as bad as the Bill Cosby situation and basically swept it

under the rug. To me social media users did not put the effort into keeping this situation in

circulation. I am in no way trying to say one is worse than the other, because both of these

scandals are truly disgusting, I just feel like the two were treated with different degrees of

severity.

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