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social media - With the availability and variety of social...

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With the availability and variety of social networks present for educational institutions to utilize, many new trends have develops with the advent of the more modern learning environment. One of the main trends similar to that of other businesses is an attempted increase in brand awareness. Just like major corporations like Coca Cola and Ford are using social media in an effort to connect with consumers and create greater brand awareness, so too are universities. There are a variety of ways that universities are attempting to connect with current students, alumni, prospective students, and staff. One type of idea is to attempt to recruit and make information regarding entrance to the university available. While the standard website of each university may have the standard admission requirements available, some schools like Carnegie Mellon are taking additional steps to give prospective students a better understanding of the student life they will be encountering. The school has created both a Facebook and Youtube presence with a variety of information available. Specifically, on the Youtube channel, the school has posted lectures and interviews with both current students and faculty which allows users to get a sense for the types of people that attend and work at the university. The initiative has worked as the Youtube channel for the school secured over 500 subscribers just after it was launched. As well, they have gained many cross references from popular academic blogs to help promote the viral nature of social media. Another popular trend in social media is connecting with alumni in an effort to promote their causes and keep them connected to the university. One way to achieve this is by having the universities connect alumni through the use of networks such as LinkedIn and by updating alumni on various job postings through Twitter. With the professional connections available to the university, they have a strong position of being able to recommend alumni and provide with the most current information that may not be available to the general public. Another tool for
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universities and alumni is to connect them with current students. There is a natural tendency for alumni to be interested in providing opportunities to those from their alma matter in an effort to give back. Because of this, the university can help facilitate these relationships by posting job and internship opportunities of alumni and help them recruit qualified students to fill the positions. With the natural tendency of alumni wishing to give back to the universities they have attended, fundraising through social media has also become a tool being utilized by institutions.
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