Rise and Shine! How to Boost Your Teacher Brand and Digital Reputation
Five tips to help you create a personal brand and a positive digital reputation
1. What will they find when they Google you?
2. What is branding?
Your brand is what you represent, the content that you share, your audience, your Personal Learning Network (PLN), and your teaching philosophy. You want your brand to demonstrate that you are trustworthy, and offer quality content, insightful comments, and experience. Your brand tells your audience that what you offer is of value. Together, the elements that create your brand should communicate a distinct, cohesive story. For instance, when you visit any of my social media profiles, you will see a consistent message. The avatar and logo for my website Shake Up Learning are more recognizable than my face, and that’s intentional. That isn’t to say that every brand needs an avatar. But do find a creative way to tell your personal story.
3. Choose the right platforms
There is no right or wrong platform. Choosing where you want to build your online presence depends on the audience that you want to engage. If you want to reach parents and school community stakeholders, Facebook is a strong bet. If you want to reach other educators, Twitter and Pinterest are big winners. The bottom line is that you don’t have to use them all. Find and connect with your audience where your audience resides.
4. Claim your social media real estate
Before you settle on a username, check that it’s available on all of the social media platforms that you want to use—and then keep it consistent. You will lose your audience if you make it hard to find you. Also keep your handle simple and short, and try to avoid special characters. When a new platform arrives, claim your username early even if you aren’t sure that you will maintain a presence there.
5. Optimize your social media profiles
Guy Kawasaki, co-author of The Art of Social Media, khas nearly 1.5 million followers on Twitter alone, and he offers effective social media tips in his book. Here are the basics:
- Add a picture of your face or logo. Your picture validates who you are. No more eggheads! Using the default egg avatar on Twitter says you don’t have a brand, and doesn’t tell your audience that you are trustworthy.
- Use your real name. Sure, you can lie, but that isn’t going to help you build a brand and online presence. Many platforms allow you to show your name as well as your handle.
- Link to your website, blog or About.me page. Don’t have one? Get one! You may not be ready to start a blog, but anyone can easily set up an About.me page—which is like an online resume.
- Compose a meaningful bio, which will help others find and follow you. It should describe your experience in the field of education and highlight topics that you follow like Maker Ed, Google Apps, or edtech.
- Add a cover image. Choose an image that tells your story. Who are you? What do you do that sets you apart? Canva is a graphic design tool that makes creating a cover image easy. It offers ready-made templates in the right size for all of the major social media platforms.
- Be consistent across all mediums. You want your followers to see the same brand on all of your social media profiles. This also means you shouldn’t change your profile picture every five minutes. Be recognizable.
Tools to build your brand and online presence
- About.me: A quick and easy personal homepage that shows your audience who you are and how to connect with you.
- Canva: An easy-to-use design tool for creating images, with templates for social media.
- Fiverr: A marketplace for services that you can use to commission a logo, avatar, or web design.
- Wix: A free website builder.
- Weebly: A free website builder.
- Buffer: A free web tool for sharing and scheduling content across multiple social media platforms.
- Nuzzel: A free web tool that lets you see the content trending among the people you follow.
- The Art of Social Media: A guide to creating a compelling social media presence, by Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick.
- What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube: Tips for preserving your digital reputation, by Erik Qualman.
- What Happens on Campus Stays on YouTube: Advice for students on protective their digital reputations, by Erik Qualman.
more on digital citizenship in this IMS blog
Top 10 Social Media Management Tools
HootSuite is the most popular social media management tool for people and businesses to collaboratively execute campaigns across multiple social networks like Facebook and Twitter from one web-based dashboard. Hootsuite has become an essential tool for managing social media, tracking conversations and measuring campaign results via the web or mobile devices. Hootsuite offers a free, pro and enterprise solution for managing unlimited social profiles, enhanced analytics, advanced message scheduling, Google Analytics and Facebook insights integration.
My note: HS is worth considering because of the add-ons for Firefox and Chrome and the Hootlet
Notes from a phone conversation with Robert Fougner
Enterprise Development Representative | HootSuite
778-300-1850 Ex 4545 firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeff Woods with SCSU Communications does NOT use HS, neither Tom Nelson with SCSU Athletics. Two options: HS Pro and HS Enterprise. HS Pro: $10/m. Allows two users and once per month statistical output. Up to 50 social media accounts (list under App Directory). 50 SM accounts can be used not only for dissemination of information or streamlining the reception and digestion of information, but also for analytics from other services (can include in itself even Google Analytics), as well as repository (e.g., articles, images etc.) on other cloud services (e.g. Dropbox, Evernote etc.). Adding any other user account costs additional $10/m and can keep going up, until the HS Enterprise option becomes more preferable.
HS has integration with most of the prominent SM tools
HS has social media coaches, who can help not only with the technicalities of using HS but with brainstorming ideas for creative application of HS
HS has HS University, which deals with classroom instructors.
Buffer is a smart and easy way to schedule content across social media. Think of Buffer like a virtual queue you can use to fill with content and then stagger posting times throughout the day. This lets you keep to a consistent social media schedule all week long without worrying about micro-managing the delivery times. The Bufferapp also provides analytics about the engagement and reach of your posts.
My notes: power user -$10/m, business – $50/m. Like HS, it can manage several accounts of Twitter, FB, and LinkedIn, Does NOT support G+
According to Mary Janitsch http://twitter.com/marycjantsch email@example.com
Top 10 Social Media Management Tools: beyond Hootsuite and TweetDeck
“Buffer is designed more as a layer on top of whatever tools you already use, we see a lot of customers use both together very easily”
According to http://blog.bufferapp.com/introducing-buffer-for-business-the-most-simple-powerful-social-media-tool-for-your-business:
25 accounts / 5 members = $50/m
According to blog note at http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/13-tools-to-simplify-your-social-media-marketing/, Time.ly (http://time.ly/) is similar to Buffer, but free.
Buffer integration to Google Reader
What’s the difference between Hootsuite and Bufferapp?
Hootsuite provides a more complete solution that allows you to schedule updates and monitor conversations, whereas Buffer isn’t a dashboard that shows you other people’s content. However, Bufferapp has superior scheduling flexibility over Hootsuite because you can designate very specific scheduling times and change patterns throughout the week. Hootsuite recently introduced an autoschedule feature that automatically designates a scheduling time based on a projected best time to post. This can be effective to use, but doesn’t have the same flexibility as Buffer since you don’t really know when a post will be scheduled till after doing so. What’s the right solution for you? Many people use both Hootsuite (to listen) and Bufferapp (to schedule), including me, and it really depends on your posting needs. In my opinion though, if Hootsuite we’re to introduce more scheduling options this could spell trouble for Buffer! But then again, Buffer could be working on some cool new dashboard that would rival Hootsuite’s offering, time will only tell.
SocialOomph is a neat web tool that provides a host of free and paid productivity enhancements for social media. You can do a lot with the site which includes functions for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Plurk and your blog. There are a ton of useful Twitter features like scheduling tweets, tracking keyword, viewing mentions and retweets, DM inbox cleanup, auto-follow and auto-DM features for new followers. Social Oomph will auto-follow any new follower of yours on Twitter if you like, which could save you a ton of time if you normally like to reciprocate follows. Social Oomph is so effective at increasing social media productivity that I use the site every day but haven’t had any reason to actually log in there since last year!
My notes: Canadian company. started with Twitter, expanded to FB and LIn and keeps expanding (blogs). Here are the Pro/Free/ features: http://www.bloggingwizard.com/social-oomph-review/
for the paid option only-submit social updates via email, blog posts. TweetCockPIT for managing several accounts, unlimited Twitter accounts. FB, LinkedIn
$27.26 Monthly http://blinklist.com/reviews/socialoomph
Hootsuite Vs SocialOomph http://bluenotetechnologies.com/2013/04/25/hootsuite-vs-socialoomph/ – FOR SO
Hootsuite Vs SocialOomph http://sazbean.com/2009/12/10/review-hootsuite-vs-socialoomph/ – FOR HS
More + reviews and features for SO – http://www.itqlick.com/Products/6643: As a start-up organisation, if you want to keep your cost low and manage social media, SocialOomph can be your best choice as you can use it for free for a stipulated time – see also the pros and cons
Tweetdeck is a web and desktop solution to monitor and manage your Twitter feeds with powerful filters to focus on what matters. You can also schedule tweets and stay up to date with notification alerts for new tweets. Tweetdeck, who was purchased by Twitter, is available for Chrome browsers, as well as Windows and Mac desktops. Recently they closed down their mobile apps to re-shift focus on the web and desktop platforms.
My notes: I abandonded TD for HS about an year ago, because of the same problem: no mobile app. Also, TweetDeck deals only with Twitter accounts, not other social media
Tweepi is a unique management tool for Twitter that lets you flush unfollowers, cleanup inactives, reciprocate following and follow interesting new tweeps! The pro version allows you to do bulk follow/unfollow actions of up to 200 users at a time making it a pretty powerful tool for Twitter management.
My notes: $7.99 for up to 100 followers and 14.99 for up to 200. Twitter only, but unique features, which the other SMT don’t have
Social Flow is an interesting business solution to watch real-time conversation on social media in order to predict the best times for publishing content to capture peak attention from target audiences. Some major publishers use Social Flow which includes National Geographic, Mashable, The Economist and The Washington Post to name a few. Social Flow offers a full suite of services that looks to expand audience engagement and increase revenue per customer. In addition to its Cadence and Crescendo precision products, SocialFlow conducts an analysis of social signals to help identify where marketers should spend money on Promoted Tweets, Promoted Posts and Sponsored Stories, extending the reach and engagement for Twitter and Facebook paid strategies.
My notes: This tool is too advanced and commercial for entry level social media group such as LRS
Sproutsocial is a powerful management and engagement platform for social business. Sprout Social offers a single stream inbox designed to help you never miss a message, and tools to seamlessly post, colloborate and schedule messages to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. The platform also has monitoring tools and rich analytics to help you visualize important metrics.
My notes: shareware app (one month), $59/m for the cheapest (up to 20 profiles)
By far the most expensive, but also the most promising-looking
SocialBro helps businesses learn how to better target and engage with their audience on Twitter. It provides tools to browse your community and identify key influencers, determine when the best time to tweet is, track engagement and analyze your competitors. Socialbro analyzes the timelines of your followers to generate a report showing you when the optimal time to tweet is that would reach the maximum amount of followers for more retweets and replies.
Cowdbooster offers a set of no-nonsense social media analytics with suggestions and resources to boost your online engagement. The platform provides at-a-glance analytics, recommendations for engagement and timing, audience insights and content scheduling to optimize delivery.
My notes: free version available.
CB vs HS: http://allisonw16.wordpress.com/2012/11/26/crowdbooster-and-hootsuite/
- Much simpler to use and understand : +
- Free version only allows for one Twitter account and one Facebook account : –
- Upgrades allow for more accounts, but still only Twitter and Facebook (no other social media types) : —
- No social media feed : —
- Provides suggestions on when to post content based on when followers and friends are most active : +
Ricky here from Crowdbooster. I am a big fan of your entrepreneurial career. We are positioned a little bit differently from Hootsuite, and as far as doing the required daily management, you may still need to use Hootsuite. What we do well is making sense of the analytics, and giving you real-time feedback about how you can improve your content, timing, and engagement. We also do some of the listening for you so you don’t have to always stare at the firehose that Hootsuite brings to you, that way we can help give you some slack as far as knowing when influencers decide to follow you, etc. We work with bit.ly, not ow.ly just yet, but using bit.ly can help us look into your click data to suggest, for example, best places to curate your content.
Identify and engage with more prospects, qualify and quantify better leads, and build and maintain stronger relationships by linking social media actions to the marketing platforms you’re already using.
My notes: More on the sale side.
startup, $39.99/m, business $70, Corp, $100, premium, $500
Solo plan, $10 with 8 services: http://sendible.com/pricing?filter=allplans
$19 per month ($14 per month if paid annually). Unlimited everything: accounts, data experts, viw data past 30 days, custom logo,
Not sure which social media tool you should choose? If you want an advanced platform with advanced features that can handle most of your accounts, you might want to opt for a paid membership to HootSuite or Crowdbooster. If you’d be fine with more basic features (which might be better for beginners with only a couple accounts to manage) GrabinBox might be a better fit for you.
14. Google Reader
My notes: App.Net and Plurk
Also, looking a the SMMTools, one can acquire a clear picture what is trending as social media tools (just by seeing what is allowed to be handled): Twitter, FB, LinkedIn.