Justifying the ROI of Social Media Investment in Education

Justifying the ROI of Social Media Investment in Education

Vladlena Benson (University of West London, UK) and Stephanie Morgan (Kingston University, UK)
Copyright: © 2014 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5174-6.ch016
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Abstract

To invest or not to invest? In the context of Higher Education, the decision around social media adoption is ultimately driven by the end users—students—increasingly demanding in their expectations of technology support provided by universities. This presents a new set of challenges to HE institutions of how to effectively adopt social media in a range of modes provided to students, alumni, external stakeholders, etc. This chapter sets the agenda for future research into methods of measuring effectiveness of social media applications in Higher Education. Drawing on a rich account of social media applications throughout the entire student lifecycle, the chapter identifies common objectives to social media campaigns and uses in educational settings. A framework for social strategy adoption by HE institutions is proposed for further empirical testing. The chapter provides an approach to measuring the effectiveness of social media in higher education and offers practical recommendations and identifies areas needing future research.
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Social Networking And Higher Education

We live in the digital universe where social media touches every aspect of student being, across the whole lifecycle, from initial search, pre-entry, the education itself, job search and as alumnus. HE organisations have incorporated social media into the education process as well as its marketing communication channels, often without fully understanding the impact this may have on their operation or their students. The nature of students is changing (and perhaps, being changed) by technology and the increasingly large, always-on community which is enabled through social media. Today’s Digital Natives are used to ‘bite-sized, on-demand’ learning, but also are increasingly collaborative and experienced in global communications. Many years have passed from the time Prensky (2001) came up with the term ‘digital natives’, the technology has changed dramatically and is indeed ubiquitous, changing the face of the learning landscape on a global scale.

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