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Book review

Michael Stoner: Social Works

“How #HigherEd Uses #SocialMedia to Raise Money, Build Awareness, Recruit Students and Get Results”: More and more universities and colleges identify the value of social media in a balanced marketing strategy. Little has been published so far, but industry veteran Michael Stoner sets out to change that with “Social Works”. In 25 case studies, he and his co-authors describe successful social media initiatives by educational institutions.

The short studies range from about 2009 to 2013 and cover a number of entertaining ideas that focused on innovative digital marketing, often paired with interactive components, for example William & Mary’s search for a new mascot (which even made it to the “Daily Show”) or Indiana University’s photo contest to dress up in varsity colours. Not all of the case studies present such innovative campaigns, some rather focus on the “bread and butter” type of work done by university marketing teams, such as donation initiatives supported with some social media activity. But the book is characterised by great detail: The authors explain in depth whether Facebook, Twitter or Youtube were the most effective, which kind of blog entries inspired the most resonance, and how many visitors or “likes” certain actions resulted in. There are often also clear cost-benefit reflections with dollar numbers. This kind of information makes the case studies valuable sources for practitioners.

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Social Works
Michael Stoner
ISBN: 978-0-9888788-0-8
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