Online Marketing

Personal Branding for the Modern Social Media Professors

I know this is during lunch. So for the fact that you guys are staying here with me is really cool. My name is Karen Freiburg, I’m an associate professor at the University of Louisville. So it’s taking me, while I’ve been there for seven years, has taken me to two pronunciate. It correctly. So I am going to be talking about something – that’s not only dear to my heart, but something that I’ve learned actually as being a social media professor, but actually utilizing different monitoring and listening tools across the board.

So we have had a lot of presentations that have discussed the social studio and Salesforce, and so I’m going to be taking a little bit of a different take on how we could use these tools to actually apply in size, but applying insights in a very specific Way so I do have my email address: it’s just Karen Freiberg at Louisville edu and on Twitter, I’m just at Kay Freiburg, and so I’m going to be talking to you guys about personal branding for modern social media professors, some do’s and don’ts.

And so the reason why I wanted to talk about this subject is not only do I see this as a big emphasis, a trend that we’re seeing right now in higher education, but it is also an area that we see a lot being discussed in both the Industry and in higher ed, but maybe not necessarily targeting to professors, we hear students getting opportunities for their personal brand. We hear athletics, we hear presidents of universities, but sometimes we don’t realize that there’s a lot of applications and benefits for a professor.

So the one thing that I want to kind of start off with is you know. Basically a simple question: is a personal brand really necessary for social media professors? We have professors like Jenny at MERIS who has done innovative things in the classroom with their students. You know and really has developed a strong personal brand for herself, and we have Brandon from the University of Tennessee a doctoral student who’s, also including his work in insights and develop a personal brand within the industry.

But really, how can a personal brand really benefit a professor who is in charge of doing other things like research teaching community outreach efforts along with other things, but my big point is personal branding today, I think, is essential for social media professors. It’s one thing for us to look at and encourage our students to have a personal brand and utilizing tools and services like Salesforce, so in social studio, to be able to listen and understand what people are talking about, whether it’s clients or own institutions and what’s happening In the community with trends, but we can use these insights for our own insights related to personal branding and the thing that I tell my students all the time is, I would not be here without the time and investment that I’ve spent on social media listening monitoring.

What people are saying, what are basically people are talking about and how to differentiate myself as a professor and using listening capabilities and tools like social studio and others to kind of see? How could I differentiate myself and personally and establish a personal brand that is unique and different, and so, when I talked to Morgan a few weeks ago, I believe about some images. She said you know Karen.

You might want to share some stories about some experiences that you’ve had and been like having a personal brand on social media. So I wanted to kind of share with you guys a couple of recent examples. So I’ve been able to get opportunities because of a personal brand on social media, for what I’m doing as a faculty member. So I teach in our strategic communication concentration at the University of Louisville, but I primarily teach social media classes.

So I wanted to kind of share with you guys a couple of examples that I’ve been able to get not just from my research, not from teaching but being active, listening monitoring and seeing what people are talking about related social media. So the first one is Cinnabon. So Cinnabon actually is a you know again, a favorite brand of mine. You know I tell myself whenever I’ve seen about I’m doing research, but they have a Twitter chat.

They’ve had a Twitter chat for five years, and so I was listening and running the analytics and they get some impressive numbers, so I started participating in their Twitter chat and then, with that relationship I was able to invite my class to be part of the feature. So they’ve never had feature guests before, but it got a lot of exposure for my students and our program at the University of Louisville.

I’ve been a thought leader and an ambassador for Adobe, which is another brand that I’ve been working with and then, of course, it’s always nice when you interact with people in Twitter, chats and celebrities, so the rock aka Dwayne Johnson, you know basically gave me a shout Out he called me dr. Karen, so I tell my students, you can call me dr. Freiburg, professor fever, but the rock he can call me dr.

Karen, so that actually got me a lot of credit with my students, as they still say, the rock tweeted you. Yes, he did so what exactly is personal branding so today it is basically the universal practice of managing all the perceptions attributed to your online and online activities associated with an individual from your community. So higher education institutions, as we are seeing here, have a reputation they want to reach donors, they want to reach alumni, they want to reach potential students, but at the same time we are missing a key component again in the part of the conversation.

Students eventually want to have jobs after graduation and they’re, going to be learning these skills in the classroom, and they are looking for someone that perhaps has that connection to the industry that has a strong presence and how they can best help them. And so I think, with personal branding for professors, we can provide them an expertise and tools, but sometimes we also have to walk the walk and talk the talk.

We have to be able to show the students. Not only am I teaching you about the social listening tools and analytics that are provided here at our disposal, whether sales force or others, but we are also basically utilizing these tools for our own advantage, because ultimately, we are our most important client or reputation is our Most priceless possession, so I wanted to kind of talk about some. Like again.

The heart of my presentation is going to be personal, branding, do’s and don’ts. So we are seeing a lot of do’s and don’ts right now in personal branding, but for professors who are teaching social media. I think the biggest thing and I done workshops at Louisville and other places, I’ve done talks. The biggest challenge is putting yourself out there. We’re very comfortable and putting our university out there, our department or organization, but we are very afraid about ourselves, and I tell my colleagues I have no problem being the guinea pig at all like I am going to put myself out there and say I’m going to Tweet you at the rock, let’s see what happens and then basically get response back, I’m like yep.

This is going to my 10-year package so hum which that actually happened. So, my colleagues after me, they are afraid that they have to go and get a tweet from the rock to get tenure. I’m like no! No, no, it’s all good, but you want to put yourself out there, but you want to use your listening capabilities from sales force and social listening to kind of see. What are people talking about myself? How do I monitor what people are looking for in the industry? For research purposes from the community, what are some majors and classes that potential students are looking for and could we as a university match up the professor with the student enquiries? What are you doing related to your own industry like who are you reaching out to about your work and research, and can you formulate those partnerships, so my partnership that I worked with with Adobe was not at all related to my research.

It was not related at all. It was about social media. How I was presenting myself. I think the most important thing to to keep in mind is: how do you stand out with your personal brand voice? How do you articulate you’re listening to what people are talking about there you’re looking at what people are seen from the industry, and you want to think about how to best present that we can use all of the analytics and tools possible, but we also want to Be able to apply what those findings are, and so you want to make every conversation mean something we have the greatest tools available to us with a social studio and sales force.

But we want to make sure that we’re applying the research and insights to mean something other things to keep in mind. We want to understand how to use again kind of tapping back to what my last point was how to use in size to analyze, listen and execute your ideas. So, basically, look at you know, instead of looking at what the university is looking at, I think every University should have a monitoring report looking at what professors are doing like how who’s reading the content who’s talking about the organization’s, but also what type of content is Generating the most traffic, so this could also help us in crafting stories for content marketing purposes that we’re able to see.

Okay, people are talking about wanting more future careers in entrepreneurship or social media. We can be able to tie in those insights and apply that to other marketing capabilities, but then, ultimately, what is our competitive advantage? So is the professor has a very strong personal brand? How do they compare with other individuals and how we could utilize this asset to our advantage? A couple things on don’ts? I think that you think if you guys have been following, what’s been going on with influencers and advocates, and people buying followers and kind of having these vanity metrics.

This falls under also with professors. You don’t want to feel like you’re, not authentic, that you want to be someone else, be your true self, and that is going to be something that people are going to be able to relate to, and personal branding is not also about just you. You don’t want to focus on the vanity metrics, you want to focus more on the community and the overall process, and the big thing here too is don’t go for the hard sell and I follow.

I find this to be really important, because we have a lot of artificial intelligence, AI being basically integrated into our tools and stuff, which basically tells us a lot about the data that we’re collecting by both by students and audiences. And so sometimes we don’t want to be completely going just for the heart cell. We want to build up those relationships so having that human touch and that human instinct is going to be really focused here and so.

Relationships on social are like a marathon, not a sprint, so I want to conclude here and just my last slide – that I’ll definitely want to open up for questions and comments. If you guys would like, I think, every person, entity and organization has a personal brand. We see this for higher education. The higher education industry is definitely aware of the fact that people are going and to schools or working at various schools and universities because of their personal brand, and I think, with professors.

There are many opportunities out there over the years. I’ve been doing workshops and personal branding and they’ve been just increasing over and over the year. So I think, when we’re looking at these listening and monitoring tools, we want to look at the insights that we not only gather about the respective University but look at who is working at the universities, the people behind the brand and again, as I read reinstated, professors.

Definitely fall into this realm. I think this is only going to be increasingly more emphasized as more classes like the ones that Jenny and Brandon are teaching are going to become more popular and professors feel more comfortable, utilizing this space not only for their classes and research, but also for their personal Brand and it really, we just have to take the time to protect and sustain our personal brand, universally across all platforms on and on offline.

So ok, so that is the end of my slide slide. So thank you. So I wanted to open up for questions and comments if you guys yeah. I appreciate that and yeah it’s great, I mean just to kind of see. I think there’s a lot of discussions too on social media con some of the challenges and things that you have to be aware, but there’s, I think so many more benefits and opportunities that outweigh those across borders.

Like this example and then I believe I think Brandon and I we communicated first on Twitter, and so it’s just how you are able to communicate and engage with your audiences and look at the opportunities that are there and the impact that you can have. It’s just been really fun for me to be able to experience that so. Oh yeah yeah yeah. Yes, I’ve been teaching social media now for six years and it is different still because they’re not used to seeing they’re like you need to be in an office and that’s all you do you work, but then, when they, I warned my students.

I mean again the thing that I tell them is we use social media like Jenni, we have a class hashtag and I tell them, you don’t have to follow me and I warn them ahead of time. They will be exposed to coffee and they might actually turn into a coffee drinker, which I have a 50 % success rate right now. Turning onto coffee drinkers to coffee drinkers, but it they’ve said you know I like to as a professor before this class, but they’ve said you, I actually like you as a person afterwards, because I was able to relate to you, like you, you’re human being I’m like.

Yes, thank you, oh, but I think that’s social mean by being present like I do email, but I also look at the analytics to kind of see like when my posting is getting responded, and so sometimes it’s easier for me just to interact with the students in The social media space and so students are sometimes hesitant to definitely share what they’re doing with their friends with the classes. But I actually give them an assignment kind of using analytics and listening to manage their own personal brand.

But do an audit and is like one of the more most eye-opening experiences and exercises because they really see what they’re presenting who’s seen it and everything through the analytics tools that we have and afterwards they’re like okay, I’m going to switch gears. I’m going to. I realize that this is a tool that I need to be more professional on, so it’s kind of a interesting journey, but it’s been fun so we’re about a month away from finishing this semester, so the students are kind of on the tail end, but they’ve grown Substantially over the last couple months – yeah, yes, yes, so they’ve been really interested because they’ve been getting a lot of in choirs was in Louisville.

We have a couple of universities around the area and we do have a pretty good digital in social industry. So we have a lot of brands, headquartered in Louisville like KFC, you know and the Yum Brands, and we have that little horse racing event that happens every first Saturday in May. So that’s Vegas tractor. So we have a lot of big brands and they’re coming towards. Like oh, my gosh, we need people who are skilled in these areas, so one of the things that Louisville is trying to do is to build up that program, and so the other schools are definitely trying to offer more programs and initiatives.

But I would say: I’ve been in Louisville since 2011 and that’s when I basically was tasked to create a class. Now we have two classes: we’re trying to develop a few more some on the research side, but then we’re also going to be looking at a campaign space class, so we’re really trying to develop an area. But I I would have to say that I had to like I was when I was going on for ten year like in the first.

You know like I was kind of thinking about. In the back of my mind I reached out and I’m like. Okay: what’s the value of this tweet like who’s going to be seeing it, and so what would they were seen is that it was the alums and the professionals from the university. They were content that contacting the office. Saying: okay, who is this professor? We hear about what she’s doing with this platform or there’s were, like we’ve heard, seeing some students who are in the workplace so yeah, it’s been kind of full circle, so they’ve actually had to have hear what was going on from the alums coming back in now That they basically knew know what we’re doing they’ve been a lot more proactive, and so I’ve been able to work with them on a few stories saying: okay, here’s how weird these type of activities in a classroom a few years ago, we worked with USA Today and There was a Forbes article, so they’re like yeah.

We need to basically amplify this a little bit more, so yeah yeah. Well, I had to actually teach the class you know at Louisville for a couple of years before social studia was even an option. So with marketing communication, because one of the things that they were kind of struggling is that they were kind of you know by deciding like which tool do we get like, which would be most appropriate for what we’re doing, and so I was brought on board just To kind of look at okay, what are the pros and cons of various tools, because that was one of the things that I had to do for a fellowship that I did a few years ago at General Motors, it’s kind of, say: okay, which tool would actually Be most affordable that would do the best work for us.

That would have the insights that we would need. So I would like initially for the first couple of classes. I would actually just talk about. What’s you know the various tools are in the metrics and what you’re able to do now because of the personal branding stuff I’ve been able to integrate that a little bit more effectively, because when I started teaching social media, I was banging on doors. Saying hey.

I need to have access to those tools and I was getting basically door slammed in my face saying: nope you’re, not an enterprise, a client you’re. Just you know teaching, but now it’s basically, I don’t have to do that. People are coming to me and say: hey. We want you to get access to the students, we want you to use these tools and we want to partner with you. So that’s been something: that’s happened, just in probably the last four years, so it’s been interesting, mm-hmm.

Well, that’s! Actually, I’ve had yeah. I mean I’ve had to deal with that because there’s some professors, no matter what you did there like, I don’t want to be on. I don’t want to have access, but there are also some of the same professors who want to go up ten year or they want to do other possibilities and I’d show them what the journals are doing. The academic journals that they’re publishing. I mean a lot of them are including social media metrics that are basically saying.

Okay, if you share these articles, if you basically share these across different platforms, you get a bit a certain score and that’s basically another way for us to be evaluated. That’s what happened to me that I realized that was going on for my tenure process, but I also showed them the benefits in all aspects of what they’re doing, and so I tell them like it’s not, maybe necessarily something that you may want to do in the Classroom but for research purposes and collaborations this is a great tool and so I’ve had to share various stories.

Like the stories that you know, Jenny has had and a few others that have gotten some amazing opportunities because they’ve been president on active on social media, and so I think to just walking with them through the steps and that’s why the workshops like I used to Do maybe a couple a year now it’s like monthly, where I’ve been basically coming in. Like okay, tell me about this ghost thing: I’m like! Yes, that’s snapchat! I don’t know if you want to do that, but okay we’ll talk about it.

So but I love helping people to kind of walk them through that process, and so there’s been some people that have said I hate social media but then, when they get on it they’re like I love it, I really embrace it, but I think it’s just that Perception of what it is, they think it’s just a fad. If I don’t like no, it’s a really cool tool for information sharing, community building relationship management and you get a lot of opportunities so, and so I try to share the stories that I’ve had.

You know over the years so but yeah they’re still you know, there’s some work to be done all right. I think we’re good yeah. Thank you. So much

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