What else are you using them for? Not to brag, but my SMC Bloggers are an impressive bunch and they’re doing a lot more than just blogging. They are the face of St. Mike’s online recruitment efforts. They manage Formspring accounts, participate in live chats with prospective students, film campus events, create videos, connect with prospects on Facebook and NING, and they tweet. I feel like a proud mom.
The hope is that you’ll meet them in one space and then recognize them in another. When high-schooler Suzie is chillin in the Class of 2015 Facebook group, I want her to feel comfortable. Hopefully she’ll be more apt to engage because she’s been reading Gabbi and Dan’s blogs and now she sees them answering questions and starting conversations on Facebook.
With that thinking in mind, this academic year I made it a requirement of the SMC Bloggers to use twitter. (It was “highly encouraged” in years prior.) Now I know there’s plenty of talk out there that says students under 18 aren’t The Chronicle article and I saw the results of Noel-Levitz E-Expectations survey. So am I wasting their time?. Yes, I read
During the 2009-2010 school year on SMCBlogs the 9 bloggers who were tweeting were by far the most “popular” bloggers. During the year their blogs received about 550 visits/month. The non-tweeters? Only about 230 visits/month.
The most active tweeters continue to see the highest traffic to their blogs.
Over the past month the 5 most active students on twitter received an average of 347.2 blog visits.
We can compare this to:
5 students who do not use twitter* received an average of 167.5 blog visits.
5 “less-active” twitter users received an average of 114.2 blog visits.
Of course, there are many more factors going into why these students are (or are not) seeing traffic to their blogs and I know that twitter usage is not the only one. Yet, I don’t think you can fight these numbers. The active tweeters have more traffic to their blogs. Plain and simple.
I want to hear from you. I think there is a lot to talk about here.
Should your student bloggers be tweeters too?
*The 5 students not using twitter are volunteer blogging and are not paid, thus are not required to use twitter. The SMC Bloggers that are contracted and paid are required to tweet.