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Checklist: Student Orientation on Social

Though most U.S. college and university campuses are quieter in the summer, there's still a wealth of content heating up their social media feeds. During a recent #casesmc Twitter chat, participants swapped inspiration for summertime posts, including highlighting student internships, unsung campus scenery, summer camps and farmers' markets.

One key aspect of summer social media coverage is orientation. Here are a few tactics to boost orientation coverage from chat participants and moderator A J Lopez, social media coordinator at Midwestern State University in Texas.

Put orientation leaders front and center.

Midwestern State, Lopez tweeted, shares pictures of orientation leaders and groups. Clad in their matching polos, orientation leaders also take over the institution's Snapchat account, showcasing presentations and campus sights.

Here's another orientation takeover example from Northern Michigan University.

Highlight the fun on Instagram and Snapchat.

To welcome students to campus, institutions spread school spirit on social channels by sharing orientation photos, hosting student social media takeovers and offering Snapchat geofilters on campus. This year, the University of Vermont tested Snapchat Spectacles at orientation, tweeted writer and digital content strategist Andrea Estey.

The spectacles helped break the ice with incoming students, she reported.

Meanwhile, other institutions like Grand Valley State University in Michigan created institution-specific GIFs.

Leverage social media to answer questions.

Beyond highlighting orientation fun, institutions can leverage social media to offer incoming students key information before they arrive on campus. Some universities create room or residence hall tours on YouTube or Snapchat. (Lopez tweeted that last year, Midwestern's Snapchat room tour garnered 20K views that day.)

Other institutions use social media to field questions from students. Midwestern State conducted a Facebook Live question and answer session on June 21. Parents and students left comments that were answered in real time by orientation leaders.

Read the full recap of the chat here.

This article is from the July 2017 BriefCASE issue of BriefCASE.