This post needs to be read in conjunction with the earlier post to provide some background information.
Our challenge is centred around increasing the active participation in the post program activities in the form of competitions and continued learning that we want to encourage among the participants. While we would have trained nearly 3,000 students by the end of 2016, the FB likes remain at close to 1700 participants only. Twitter take up is even lower. We would like this to be as close to the number of students trained or at least the teachers and parents, if not more.
For the purposes of this blog entry, I will be looking at it from the context of a ‘Social Media and PR Campaign’.
One of the scholarly research articles I looked at in studying this further was a research article titled Engagement across 3 social media platforms : An exploratory study of a cause related PR campaign by Hye-Jin Paek, Thomas Hove, Yumi Jung and Richard T. Cole. This study analysed a social media campaign across 3 different platforms in promoting child welfare.
The study (although it was across a small population) yielded 2 important findings :
- People’s use of different social media platforms such as blog, Facebook and Twitter was for the most part related to the campaign’s behavioural goals-ie the more people used each platform, the more they carried out each desired behaviour.
- Engagement played a mediating role between social media platform use and the campaign’s behavioural goals-that is for offline communication and helping behaviours but not social media behaviour.
Reference : Hye-Jin Paek, Thomas Hove, Yumi Jung, Richard T. Cole, Engagement across three social media platforms: An exploratory study of a cause-related PR campaign, Public Relations Review, Volume 39, Issue 5, 2013, Pages 526-533, ISSN 0363-8111, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pubrev.2013.09.013.
Having said this, our challenge is still on how to get the engagement in the first place-meaning how do we get the participants into the loop?
Which now brings me to the second scholarly article that was looked at which is “Social Media : The new hybrid element of the promotion mix” by W. Glynn Mangold and David J. Faulds from the Kelley School of Business, Indiana University.
This article discusses the perspective of Integrated Marketing Communications which attempts to coordinate and control the various elements of the promotional mix to produce a unified customer focused message. This article is more in the context of marketing in a commercial sense but I believe that the principles from here can be equally applied in a non-profit/campaign situation with some minor adjustments. The article also examines social media’s hybrid role in this mix.
We have attempted to apply one of the learning from this article in the coming weeks by “Utilising the Power of Stories” to create more vivid memories and we will need to see if this has any impact in increasing engagement.
I don’t think we can come to a conclusion per se in overcoming our challenges by only looking at the above 2 articles. Further research is needed to look at this in further depth to see how we can improve the takeup rate.
In the meantime, I also found this interesting read which is directly applicable to our situation which I shared in my profile today 20 Amazing ways for Teachers to use Social Media in the Classroom (Ref : http://www.ourict.co.uk/classroom-social-media-tips/)
Here is another article that I found interesting and relevant Making the Case for Social Media in Schools (Ref : https://www.edutopia.org/blog/making-case-social-media-in-schools-jim-asher)
So the journey will continue in the coming weeks as we hopefully get a better understanding of how we can do this better!
- Hye-Jin Paek, Thomas Hove, Yumi Jung, Richard T. Cole, Engagement across three social media platforms: An exploratory study of a cause-related PR campaign, Public Relations Review, Volume 39, Issue 5, 2013, Pages 526-533, ISSN 0363-8111, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.pubrev.2013.09.013.
- W. Glynn Mangold, David J. Faulds, Social media: The new hybrid element of the promotion mix, Business Horizons, Volume 52, Issue 4, 2009, Pages 357-365, ISSN 0007-6813, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bushor.2009.03.002.
Keywords: Integrated marketing communications; Social media; Consumer-generated media; Promotion mix