Printer Friendly

Follow the (FB) leader.

In November, Ivy Tech Community College (Ind.) hit a 50,000 Facebook fan milestone. Two months later, the count neared 54,000. The page didn't get to be what's likely tops among community colleges on Facebook by accident. Jeff Fanter, vice president of communications and marketing for the system, which has 200,000plus students enrolled annually, shares some success secrets:

* Having a purpose. Ivy Tech uses FB to better serve current students and applicants, providing quick answers to posted questions.

* Presidential promotion. In letters to current and prospective students, the president mentions Facebook as a resource, Fanter says. Ivy Tech's customer service center, which sends out 1.4 million communications a month, also notes the page on correspondence.

* Assigning staff shifts. Five people take turns checking in on FB, he says, so even answers requiring outside help get answered fast. But as the page's popularity pops, all the traffic jams up staff time. The service center may be taking over FB duties, Fanter notes.

* Keeping it fun. Contests for prizes such as $50 bookstore gift cards have included movie trivia and posting the best story about how Ivy Tech is a life-changer. Fanter estimates they held 20 contests in 2011. When his team sees a "like" slowdown, they get creative.

* Allowing students to help. Fanter is proud to report that students post answers to questions on the wall. But staffers do watch for inaccurate information to correct.

* Enhancing the user experience. FAQ links to common need-to-knows are in the works, and the team hopes to do more with video.

* Stopping to bask. "Everything we post easily has 100 comments," Fanter says. A recent post about finals, with a "Click like if you've been studying," got 1,100 likes.

COPYRIGHT 2012 Professional Media Group LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2012 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

 Reader Opinion

Title:

Comment:



 

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Ezarik, Melissa
Publication:University Business
Date:Feb 1, 2012
Words:288
Previous Article:Tracking community college trends.
Next Article:Online & engaged: how to help ensure student success in online courses--despite research pointing to disengagement of distant learners at community...

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters