Social Media

Facebook, Twitter Engagement Done Best at Baylor and UW-Madison

Want to know how to do Twitter or Facebook right at your institution? You might want to study the practices used by the University of Wisconsin-Madison for the first and Baylor University for the second. Those two institutions have been deemed the "top users" of the those social media sites by Engagement Labs, which develops technology for measuring online social engagement.

Using its eValue Analytics service, the company said it can measure social media performance based on an aggregate of engagement, impact and responsiveness. Engagement measures the level of interaction displayed through likes, comments and other community reactions; impact examines how many unique users have been "exposed" to a piece of content; and responsiveness looks at the rate, speed and quality of the school's responses to its fans. The analytics can currently be used for social activities on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

The current institutional ranking encompassed those schools that fell into at least one of these categories: Ivy League, for-profit or in one of the National College Athletic Association conferences.

Among Facebook contenders, Baylor led the pack with the highest eValue score. According to the company, the Texas university earned that score through posts of "high-quality content" that revolves around its football team and campus. The school also generated the highest number of comments and likes per 1,000 fans.

Texas A&M U came in second overall and generated the highest amount of overall likes and comments. Iowa- and California-based Ashford U, ranking third overall, experienced the highest responsiveness of the group.

On Twitter, U Wisconsin-Madison came in first overall and generated the highest number of retweets and favorites per 1,000 fans. Texas A&M placed second with the highest impact score and the highest follower growth among the top 10 schools; it wooed 25,515 new followers during the period measured. The highest engagement score on Twitter was taken by Baylor, which placed third overall.

On Twitter, U Wisconsin-Madison came in first overall and generated the highest number of retweets and favorites per 1,000 fans.

On Twitter, U Wisconsin-Madison came in first overall and generated the highest number of retweets and favorites per 1,000 fans.

"With social media engrained in student life, it provides an excellent opportunity for academic institutions to communicate with prospective and current students through two-way, real-time communication," said CEO Bryan Segal in a prepared statement. "Known for their 'always-on' mentality, students serve as a highly engaged user base that will interact frequently with shared content as long as it's engaging and compelling."

While engagement may be high on both channels, the same is not so when it comes to responsiveness, especially on Twitter. Segal advised institutions "to place more emphasis on their response strategies to participate in two-way communication." He noted that followers are increasingly turning to social channels to get answers to their questions on academic needs and campus life. "Providing the requested information via social is essential to the promotion of their brand," he said.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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