This is Part 2 of a series entitled Academia meets Twitter, where professionals took part in a short e-mail Q&A session to discuss Twitter incorporation in an educational setting.
Twitter handle(s): @butleradmission, @butlerbloggers, and @butlersports
Participant: Brad J. Ward
Butler University, Coordinator for Electronic Communication
From which department does the Twitter profile run?
I work in the Admission department and oversee several accounts. There are several for admissions (@butleradmission, @butlerbloggers, then each blogger has their own account that links to @butlerbloggers) and another for Athletics (@butlersports).
How often do you monitor the profile?
I use several tools such as TweetBeep, TwitterFeed, and RSS to monitor the accounts. This allows me to keep an eye on activity and participate when needed without taking too much time out of my day to utilize Twitter. I check the RSS throughout the day and look at tweets as they are emailed to me via TweetBeep. Some days there is more to monitor than other days, but it's never overwhelming.
What applications do you use to run Twitter?
Other than the ones above, I don't really use any. I use TweetDeck for my @bradjward account, but generally use the web interface to handle all Butler related twittering.
Have you determined if more, students, alumni, prospective students, staff, or community members are following?
I don't have concrete numbers, but I have found MANY alumni and community members through Twitter Search and RSS, and more current students are beginning to follow. Recent graduates and senior PR students seem to be very active on Twitter.
What communication goals do you hope to meet using Twitter for your institution?
I just want to be able to connect with people interested in Butler and provide information for them when needed. More than that though, it's all about building the relationship. Twitter will be gone some day and we'll all move on to something else, but the relationships we build will continue into the future. Overseeing Twitter is a small portion of my time at this point, but we have built many meaningful relationships over the past few months.
Vedo's Thoughts: What I find as the most important takeaway from this Q&A is that Brad understands and appreciates the value of relationships no matter the tool. There is no magic social media bullet, the magic comes from engagement and fostering meaningful relationships. Is there anything that jumps out to you?
Academia meets Twitter