On-campus groups find success through social media

Many on campus groups are taking to social media to spread information and to engage not only current students but also prospective students,’ said the manager of the BW Admissions social media accounts.

Many of Baldwin Wallace University’s on-campus groups have recently begun moving to social media platforms to spread information to a wider range of audiences.   

According to BW’s website, the university offers more than 100 clubs and organizations for students. These groups vary from student organized clubs to academic departments run by university officials.   

In addition to being represented in involvement fairs, holding meetings for their groups and promoting through activities for all majors, many on campus groups are taking to social media to spread information and to engage not only current students but also prospective students, said Ryan Collins, a BW admission counselor and the manager of the BW admissions social media accounts.   

“Our content is for prospective students and their parents, the main goal is to help build knowledge about BW and help students and their parents get excited,” Collins said.  

These social media accounts spread useful information to the students that are a part of or interested in joining that group said Cadence Downey, manager of the social media accounts for BW’s Department of English.  

“I think it’s great for communication because not everyone is in the same place at the same time,” Downey said. “It’s good to check on social media where it’s always available all the time.”  

Beyond academic purposes, social media accounts are being used by student-run organizations, such as the BW dance team. Katie Colabianchi, co-captain of BW’s dance team, said the outreach achieved through social media is not as formal as through face-to-face communication.  

“With social media, you reach a different audience,” Colabianchi said. “It’s not as formal, in a good way. I really like that approach.”   

Colabianchi also said that the more informal nature of social media has also benefitted the members of the Dance Team by allowing them to easily share information among each other.   

Despite social media proving to be a useful tool for on campus groups, there are drawbacks to this method of communication. Challenges posed include forming content ideas, ensuring that the content is professional and how much time it takes to make the content.   

“More work goes into social media than most people think. Our team puts in hours upon hours of work; they put in blood sweat and tears to make these accounts fun and something for students to get excited about,” Collins said.    

There are also concerns that the information being shared through social media is less professional than information spread through other tangible methods.   

“There’s such a different approach with social media that it’s still not seen as a means of professional communication,” Colabianchi said.   

Despite these drawbacks, on campus groups continue to find success when sharing information through social media.   

“I think it expands to different audiences, whereas just posting one place, you can find it on Twitter, Instagram [and] Facebook, you can see it a lot more than if it was a flyer,” Downey said.  

Disclosure: Katie Colabianchi, who was interviewed for this article, has contributed to The Exponent on a freelance basis.