Everywhere we look today, there are new social media channels popping up – some with more merit than others, some which might die out as a fad. But there is one which has remained strong since its early beginnings, and that is Facebook. Despite the whispering among some of the younger generations that Facebook is “dead”, the truth is that it is still alive and kicking and being used on a daily basis by billions of people.
When you are working on a social media marketing strategy for your school, it is important to remember that Facebook is one of the most-used and easiest platforms for education institutions. It allows you to reach current and potential students at key touchpoints in their journey with your school, and you can integrate user-generated content (content which has been made by your students) to further improve engagement.
If you are not sure where to start, below we provide some helpful advice on how to use Facebook for your school.
Think About Your Audience
While many people assume that the age group using Facebook is young, the truth is that it is used by both old and young generations, which your school will need to take into account when creating content. The key users who will be visiting your school’s Facebook page will most likely be the parents of current and potential students, but some older students will also visit the page. You will need to tailor your social media marketing strategy to meet the needs of all audiences.
Create A Facebook Business Page
The first step, after thinking about your audience, is to create a Facebook Business Page for your school, which is different from a personal profile. In order to create a Business Page, you will need to have a personal profile first, and your Business Page should focus on your school and not have anything personal on it relating to you or your staff. The age should be named after your school and should include all important details, as well as accurate contact and address details.
Consider Content Carefully
While your school is, in a way, your “business” your audience will not see it in this manner, meaning that the content you post should be more newsworthy than focusing on sales. You will also need to think about how often you post – too little and you will lose engagement, too often and you will be seen as “spammy”. You could post three times a week, using the best posts from your website. You could also share fun stories and activities that have taken place during the week to gain engagement on your Facebook page.
Craft A Content Calendar
Once you have thought about the type of content you would like to share, you should move on to creating a content calendar. Without this, you will not be sure what to post when, and the content on your Facebook page might not be cohesive, which can be confusing for your audience. You could plan to have one day per week which highlights academic achievements, one for sporting awards, and one where you share fun news from students. Sticking to this plan will ensure your school’s vision, mission, and voice remains the same across all platforms.
Remember To Post Regularly
It is best practice to post on a regular basis, and for some, posting once a day (or 5 times a week) is the best option while for others, posting once every three days is better. The key is to post on a regular basis so that your Facebook page is continually engaging and interesting. Because you are a school, arguably the best time to post your content is around 3pm, as this is when both your students and parents will be able to use social media but you could try testing out different times which might work.
Read And Respond To Reviews
Social media marketing can be highly beneficial to your school, and one aspect of this is reading and responding to reviews. You will need to monitor your Facebook page to see both positive and negative reviews that have been left by students and parents. You will need to respond to both negative and positive reviews in a constructive manner, and try to answer questions with private messages in case sensitive information is involved. Remain objective when responding to reviews, as becoming too emotional could backfire.
You might not think that your school needs to use social media but it is an ideal solution for reaching your audience. Facebook might seem like a confusing platform, but it is simple and easy to use once you know how. Start by thinking about your audience and creating a business page, then move onto considering your content and creating a content calendar.
Posting regularly and responding to reviews can help to increase the engagement on your Facebook page. If you would like help with a content marketing strategy or need a new website for your school, feel free to contact the Edumedia team today to find out how we can help you.