Social media utilization: weekly round-up 3

This is the third weekly round-up in which I analyze and monitor three Twitter accounts that I have chosen for their use of social media. The full explanation is here: http://iantangblog.blogspot.com/2013/09/explanation-of-semester-blog.html.

Today marks the end of the third week since I have started tracking their utilization, each using Twitter. Again, it was clear that the three entities have very distinct uses of social media, all aiming to contribute to the marketing of The George Washington University.


The George Washington University (@GWTweets)
This weekend was Alumni Weekend at The George Washington University and the official account of the University engaged in the topic throughout the week to prepare for the weekend. It tweeted a lot about its alumni and related it back to current-day. Simultaneously, it tweeted about current events, besides Alumni Weekend, happening on campus as well.

While its tweets for daily events received some favorites and retweets, a lot of the tweets regarding Alumni Weekend had poor audience response. Though some tried to deliberately engage with the audience, some of the problem involved the need for prior knowledge, such as in the tweet below. Many current followers probably do not know the answer or have the incentive to go look, especially when it related to events so far in the past. The tweets did do a good job at branding and showing where some of the graduates go afterwards.




The George Washington University Office of Undergraduate Admissions (@GWAdmissions)
The official account for The George Washington University Office of Undergraduate Admissions continued to be very focused on the purpose they served. Once again, they seemed to tweet significantly less than the other GW accounts. In fact, the account did not even tweet about the current Alumni Weekend that is going on, probably because its audience consists of people who are not even at The George Washington University. That was probably a smart move, as tweets about the Alumni Weekend probably would have been not too relevant or interesting to prospective students.

Peter Konwerski, Senior Associate Provost and Dean of Student Affairs (@GWPeterK)

This week, the Dean of Student Affairs emphasized the occurrence of The George Washington University's Alumni Weekend 2013. A lot of his tweets utilized the hashtag "#GWAW13," along with an update at the event that was currently taking place. He even changed his cover photo to a relevant photo. However, the cover photo is usually not seen unless someone directly visits his profile. Because he did not tweet the photo, not many people probably noticed the change.

Because the photo contains a call to action to use the hashtag and other social media sites where the hashtag can be used (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Google+, etc), and because many people probably did not see it since they didn't click into his profile, not many people may have known about the hashtag until they saw Dr. Konwerski actually using the hashtag. Some may even have wondered what that hashtag was about.


While the tone on some of his tweets are nostalgic, others create a forward-thinking sense that are also filled with optimism, such as the example used in the screenshot above. This was most likely to continue making the tweets relevant to current students, while also addressing the alumni that were visiting campus.

The important use of the word "leaders," instead of just "students" or "graduates," demonstrate the ability for those who attended GW to make a difference in the world, not only establishing the ethos of those alumnae, but also the ethos of the University to produce great people. The last part of the above tweet, "now making an impact beyond campus," gives current students, especially those in the Student Association, hope for the ability to achieve their dreams in the future after graduation. It provides pathos as it connects the students, again, especially those in the Student Association, with the alumni, in the sense that they can see what those before them have achieved. It may also attract current students to join the Student Association because of the positivity shown of those people in this tweet.

Potentially problematic, however, is the "logos." Though the tweet implies the breakfast was just for the past Presidents of the Student Association, it also assumes that all of the previous Presidents are now out there successfully changing the world, when in fact, not 100% of them are making an "impact beyond campus." It may draw people into the Student Association, thinking that just because they are a part of the organization, they will succeed in the future.

While some of his tweets with the #GWAW13 hashtag enjoyed several favorites and a couple Retweets, many did not do that well in those metrics. That's probably because the audience of Twitter is usually younger. Current students probably saw no use in favoriting or retweeting those tweets, since it had very little to do with them, and instead, was aimed towards an older age group, most of which probably do not use Twitter often or in real-time.

This week, the official account of the admissions office at The George Washington University was the most interesting. It continued to serve a highly focused group of people and did not alter its goal just because of major events happening on campus. While almost every other Twitter account had tweets regarding the Alumni Weekend, it did not force itself to tweet about the event, such as a cheesy one that could have said: "Remember when you applied to GW? #GWAW13" If it had, prospective students may have found the account to have been annoying.