Q&As

Social Media: Risks and Rewards For Your School Brand

Friday July 1, 2016

Christine Moody, joined Chris Sanchez of Legalwise Seminars to discuss social media and its risks and rewards within a school environment.

Interested in School Law? Check out our upcoming conferences and past recordings here

 

What are some of the challenges facing schools today?

Like the rest of the community, everything schools do and say is under scrutiny because of social media. Everyone has access to social media tools—students, staff, parents, community, and other stakeholders—so schools have to be aware of this. While traditional communication tools cannot be forgotten, the immediacy of social media means that the stories can go viral before your very eyes! The main thing is to understand what your school stands for (your school brand’s “why" and its purpose these must be clearly articulated) so this can be used as a filter for how you respond to good and not-so-good comments. Building strong brands for schools is about using social media to for greater engagement, differentiation, and loyalty.

What is a social media issue you think some schools might underestimate or not fully appreciate?

The tools that students use is constantly changing i.e. they are no longer using Facebook as they did and are leaning towards Snapchat. Schools have to be one step ahead to see what is on the horizon and what the tool does to fully understand it before it is social media tool of choice! Your school’s brand involves everything your school says and does, so social media has to be considered in the bigger picture. It is one tool of many tools used to communicate.

What are a few things schools should keep in mind related to social media?

"Social media” has many different tools i.e. Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat etc and each one has different uses and ways of communicating. For example, Instagram is all about the image. Social media along with the website, the newsletter, the design of the buildings, the credentials of the staff et al, are all part of the school’s brand and must be considered in the context of building a differentiated brand. It is the consistency of the school’s brand message, delivered across all platforms that is key here. Even though the use of these digital platforms is growing, don’t forget that human interactions are also important i.e., the student / teacher relationship will only be enhanced by social media.

What’s one tip you have for schools in dealing with social media?

Social media should not be feared but instead embraced for the power that it has to build your school’s brand.

What are some of the big trends and developments you see ahead in the education area?

The education sector is no different from other sectors when it comes to disruption for example, who is going to be the next ‘Uber’ in the education sector? Innovation is constant and schools need to ensure that their business model and their mindset is open to constant change and disruption that this brings. It is exciting and scary at the same time.

 

Interested in School Law? Check out our upcoming conferences and past recordings here

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