An online presence needs to be tailored to your audience and, if your audience rapidly migrates from one demographic characteristic to another, you may need to create a presence that has many faces to it. Scott Chappell at Sessions College of Design has mastered the tactic.
Sessions has a year-round (3 semesters) enrollment model, graduation certificates that are presented monthly and classes that can be enrolled in anytime for enrolled students. So his use is everyday for the various tools Session employs (blog, micro-blog and social networks) to connection to the audience.
What’s the biggest obstacles for the growth of social media presence for Sessions? Scott says ‘patience’, he sees the the education product characteristics is not the commodity of a fast moving consumer good with a low price point. His effort is to get subscribers to engage in all areas in a way that they appreciate and have a value associated with the Sessions brand.
Scott has determined that for Sessions, there is a way to use social media to establish a lifetime value with the audience – education is pretty much a one-shot sale in most cases. The maturation of the relationship allows a prospect for Session.edu to become a student, attend classes and graduate into the business community. At some point he can trust alumni to evangelize the Sessions.edu product and he does not find that they need to scrub or moderate content.
Community members come to the Sessions presence on Facebook, he has to be sensitive that they may all come for different reasons; some are prospects and others are graduates – it’s why the Facebook audience gets a cultural message in that channel and not a selling message. They do then migrate the graduate user base to another social network, one more business oriented.
What does Scott identify as key tactics to designing a successful social media presence?
- Quality vs. quantity needs to be a central objective
- Sincerity is important
- It’s called social media for a reason, business need not abuse the trust the consumers gives you
- Be persistent – social media is not a set and forget proposition
- Tactically, don’t over think it – get the content out there, do a soft launch and get started
This is the final episode of the two part podcast with Scott Chappell. Guy Powell and I want to thank him; we appreciate his perspective and taking the time to share it with us in our podcast interview!
Here are links to material related to the interview that you may find useful; the entire conversation in one extended recording and soon, a transcript of the conversation
We’re very interested in your perspective on the topic and, if you have a favored presenter or person who can add to the conversation, please let us know – we’re looking to interview him / her and put it up here!
Thank you again to you our listeners – hope you enjoyed the effort and work we put into it!
The Podcast and Credit For Where Credit is Due – This transcript was developed from a live interview on Wednesday, February 3, 2010 between Scott Chappell, Guy Powell and Steven Groves using FreeConferenceCall.com.
The podcast interview was downloaded and processes in Audacity, which is available from SourceForge.com, and with ‘4toFloor.wav’ music loop from member ‘Rooks’ and posted at SoundSnap.com.
The Introduction Voice Talent is Ms. Cynthia Propst.