Social media is beginning to be taught in universities as a core skill that students will need in the business world. Neal Schaffer interviews two professors at NOVA Southeastern University, Jim Barry and John Gironda, on how they got started with their program, what they teach, and the challenges that they and their students face.
welcome to maximize your social actionable advice on how your business can maximize your social media presence. Now the host of Maximize Your Social Social Media Author, speaker, consultant and founder of Maximize Social Business Neal Schaefer. Hey, everybody, this is Neil Schaefer. Welcome to another episode of Maximize Your Social. Do you monitor Twitter for opportunities? I love the various opportunities that I find on Twitter and recently as being an author of being able to be extremely fortunate having people actually tweet out. I just read, Maximize your social great book or What have you? It's something you can only do on Twitter, because on Facebook and LinkedIn, it's hidden behind personal profiles. Google plus a guest. Some people are active, not as active as maybe on Twitter, but Twitter really is the open public forum. So whenever I see that, I always want to reach out and think those people now, recently, I've had some professors say Congratulations. We just shows your book for our course and serendipitously one of those universities, and I plan on meeting all of them for the other ones that have adopted it that are listening to this podcast I am in Orlando, Florida this week, which you probably heard about in my earlier podcast. And one of the universities is a university called Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida If you're in Florida from the area, you probably know the university in California. In all honesty, I didn't know about it, But then I realized they have a 30,000 students population and they're the third largest independent university in our country, a major institution. But more surprised me as I am here on campus, together with two professors of marketing that have adopted Maximize your Social for the course. I realize how far in their curriculum of social media marketing that they have come, and it's been extremely impressive. Now you know that I teach a course at Rutgers on maximize social business. We have Dr Jessica Rogers, who teaches out Southern New Hampshire University. I know the dean of the Business School University of San Francisco, which is another famous one. But Nova Southeastern University clearly has developed the course that I am really fascinated by, and I'd say it is right now the cutting edge of the standard of where I think university classes should be in social media and I learned all this. Just spending a few hours and talking with these two gentlemen. I'm gonna have them introduce themselves before I get to the questions. Jim, we'll start with you. I'm Jim Berry. I'm a professor of social media
marketing. I cover a variety of MBA classes in the subject, including a content marketing social networking, also for the undergraduate class, where we have sort of a similar Siri's Awesome and John John Veranda, Um, professor marketing at Nova Southeastern University. And I also teach some of the courses here in social media marketing as well and marketing principles, as well as some sales management courses and marketing management courses as well.
All right, so if you read maximize social business, which you obviously should be reading religiously, you'll know that I just published this new Google plus challenge with using the Creds Spark platform and created a block post. Should social media professionals be tested for their aptitude? And I talk about the need of a socially MBA, how social media is mainstream in the business world, yet it's taught it very, very few universities. I want to ask our professor share Nova, southeastern how they started. Note only realizing there is a need to cheat social media here. But how did you work about convincing others internally on that need? And obviously say whatever you can in a public forum here, don't start. This is Jim very. I would say we really
got into this in a big way about four years ago, and it was basically introduced as a supplement to our sales based curriculum. We start realizing that some of the technology is used in sales, go further than just CR M and should included minimum social networking experience. You get through Lincoln that caught on fire to a point where the student population suggests that maybe we should include a broader base course and just Internet marketing but Internet and Social Media marketing in a marketing major. As we got into the marketing major, we start seeing our students getting up to 35 to 40 in a particular class. We realized that maybe it's time for us to roll out an n b. A marketing concentrate that includes social media. So that brought in two courses and then, from there we went to offering. The first specialty is part of our marketing major called Social Media. That includes three classes now. So John teaches the 1st 1 which basically gives our students an overview of Internet marketing, search, engine marketing and social media. That moves into our second course, which is devoted strictly to content marketing. And then it wraps up into course that uses Neill's book, which is How do you basically engaged fans and Bill community surrounding that content? So we now stand with six classes overall, starting from just an element of a sales course. And we did that in about two and 1/2 years.
That's an incredible story. Let me ask you, you probably when you meet other people in the field, maybe at other universities. Why should you have courses and social media's and don't the platforms change every month? And how do you respond to that? I have my own answer, but I want to hear out. You know how you do. I would say that starts with
its changed the framework for marketing, and it's a different mindset. So
I would start
with the transmit transition we're making from outbound to involve marketing and a roll of content in place of cold calling. So starting with it just conceptual e. I think that becomes more important than a changing platform. So as we introduce new platforms like Snapchat whisper etcetera, it's easy to have that dovetail into a piece about developing content on a mobile platform. But the concept of having content on a mobile platform will probably stayed constant. It turns out, I think, in general, as we go from platform to platform, or let's talk about, for example, changing from organic feeds to pay for play feeds. That doesn't necessarily change how we want our students to embrace the role of content in terms of escorting their customers or in terms of leveraging followers and connections to spread the word about your brand story, anything you want out. Yeah, sort of to add to what Jim was saying, I think as faras the individual platforms that are changing. We've seen that recently, of more platforms becoming more more popular and other ones maybe losing popularity. It's still important to look at some sort of universal need or universal themes that consumers are engaging in, so it's it's still important. It's still very worthwhile. Teach courses on social media, marketing because I don't think in general the field is still gonna be around.
So in essence, social media now forms part of the first part of the marketing infrastructure of corporations and part of the infrastructure of how consumers consume information. In essence, right, so that's why they're there is a need. Let me do the flip side. Why do your students decide to take your classes on social media? I would start
out with the employment demands, especially here in South Florida, and there's a huge demand for companies to step up to, especially content marketing. Also, I think cos they're now beginning to embrace social media outside of just marketing and sales into some of the customer service rinks and as they start to adopt the social business they don't have too many folks to go to, is gonna have one more thing on that. The last subject, I would think one reason why social Media has really been grasped in the academic field. It's just a manifestation of relationship marketing where we didn't have a chance to really play out relationship marketing and face to face type dialogues. But you have it today. I mean, all the factors driving trust that you hear from the practitioners in the fuel is exactly what we study in the academic world. It's called benevolence, customer orientation, shared values, transparency, communications. So what it's done is it's taken a model called Relationship Marketing, and it's allowed us to walk the talk
awesome. So getting back to the students So the job situation is being one driver. Any other drivers you see about their interest in social media or socially to marketing?
Well, I think as far as the students in general sort of Jim was saying, It does boil down two jobs and employment and kind of their own. You know, as companies and firms we talk about return on investment. I think the students want to get a return on their educational investment. And so I think Social media marketing is one way is one way to do that, to show a tangible field that's growing and popular, and it gives them a chance and no matter what field to go into. I think you mentioned that earlier as we were talking before he started recording of no matter what field you're in, having social media expertise can only enhance your marketability, right? I think you're seeing three disciplines really get subsumed under social media. Let's start with public relations. So I think many students are finding that a minimum. You better have a social media background and to qualify for today's job description for public relations and that would take the next one to sales. I mean more of sales are being driven by content coming out of the marketing group to where they probably have Maur off the lion share of dollars, taking a customer down the sales file and what you saw. Traditionally, I think your third area really falls more under publishing a lot of people coming up empty on getting jobs journalist. But what they don't realize is that there's brand publishing. So companies are actually hiring their own internal publishers where they want marketing people to be more like journalists. That really is a tribute, a lot to a social media mindset.
Awesome. So you know there's a need for the social media education. It's a natural and there's a natural reason why your students are taking these courses now. Obviously a lot of undergraduates of grab programs. If I'm a working professional, I know that you offer some online programs. Do you actually offer some sort? Of course that I can take If I'm one of the listeners, it's podcasts, and I want to brush up on my social media.
Currently, we don't really offer a standalone course. We are considering overtime the possibility of a certificate type course. But when you do, we have what's called the Hudson Institute for Executive Training, where we have a number of modules. One is more of, Ah, boot camp, three day overview of social media. That's one avenue, but I think we'll take a little time before we have, like, a standalone course. Most of the demand we have right now is towards a bachelor's or an MBA market concentrate, but the courses for that concentrate they go back and forth as faras the availability of online. But they are offered online from time to time. So so
you know, There you go. If you have ah, child, that's about to enter college. If you're thinking about grad school, definitely or you know someone, that is definitely you know, that such a social media centric education and three different courses when most colleges or universities don't even have one single course, and they make it part of one course. You can see just how far had Nova Southeastern here is. I hope you'll consider them, I guess. A final question. What is the most challenging of all the different social media things that you teach? What is the most challenging thing for your students to grasp? I would start with
what we're talking about earlier storytelling. I think the students really grasp a lot of the technicalities of the social sales final, embracing social networks in terms of an engagement distributing your content. Those fall more in the area of what I would call tactics. The challenges to full one, an overarching strategy. How am I using social media slash content marketing and search engine optimization to just get more business from a strategic perspective? The other thing is, we had talked about There are some concepts to improve an emotional connection with our customers that is difficult to teach entertainment, storytelling, for example. It doesn't fit the typical exercise of a template or graph, and some students really don't grasp. It is easily as classes where either that light bulb went on a Dinka one. This is one where they have to understand there's a cultural mindset, the taps more into emotion, and it's never a tangible and other. Yeah, I think some of the difficulty lies in not necessarily the concepts, but and we kind of Jim and I have talked about this earlier, and it almost lies in the fact that students don't realize how much work actually goes into the social media marketing itself. Do you think of the actual perspiration we called it where the legwork that you have to put into it and continually updating your content and be and having fresh content, they kind of just wanna, you know, do it once and then walk away and not touch it again. I think that probably is the same, you know, for a lot of practitioners in social media marketing too.
Now, you almost maybe answered the final question I wanted to ask you, which is No, no, no, no, no. And you know, I like to keep these podcasts, you know, down and dirty, short and sweet. Here is that was You know what? What you think the students find hardest aggress what a US professors find hardest teach about social media, and it may be one of the same as what you just said. But I'm interested to hear if there's any difference.
The sequence of topics. Where do you start? You know, I used to start with trying to give them platform understanding, but it's it's difficult to get students to understand how platform works without purpose. So then I went to purpose first, kind of telling him, Bear with me as we roll out conceptually how you get customers embraces in bold marketing concept. And that doesn't work either because they're kind of hold them at bay the nuggets of using social media until the end of the course. So channel is a lot of times. It's like, What do you roll out first? And we finally I think we nailed it with you. Kind of give him a high level overview of very advanced information and you say over time you're gonna get more rich understanding, taking down a content trail, and after all the content is done and sequenced and amplified, then we get him into right now. How do we get this out there promoted and activate our communities to where we get a greater following while we're rolling out our content. So I think just a sequencing that is a major challenge.
And Jimmy had mentioned that one thing you tried this year was throwing out the top trends of 2014 and just throwing it out there in the very first days that they happen somewhere in the mind. That big data video on all that
native advertising is short form, and so we kind of give it to him with a fire hose out front so that at least they have the latest snapshot. They're gonna be highly confused, might be over their head. But then it makes it easier for us to teach the rest of the course. So I don't have to get into the background of why everything is going mobile. For example, Johnny, I think most difficult sometimes is transitioning students from sort of the entertainment value of what they've previously used social media for, you know, as a consumer, and just using for the entertainment purpose to kind of think of it and almost put the business had on to try so that from myself, from a perspective of teaching the course, I have to make sure to kind of try to emphasize and always bring it back to a practical business application. So
not say that's the same challenge that I have is a consultant. That's exact same challenges that people get it from a personal. Why should I follow people back on Twitter? Well, you're a business. You want to get noticed, right? Let's get
one more thing. You also have to walk to talk. So big challenge we have is we have to have a lot of Twitter followers and leave the connections. And, you know, we have to have a pretty high cloud score. If we don't have content that really shows results, you lose a lot of credibility. So there's a lot of time we spend walking to talk.
Now I'm gonna finish off just by having you introduced. You know your blog's Twitter handles where people confined your gym. I must say you have one block post of building a holistic social media strategy with this intense visual that I shared on Google Plus and Twitter and in my Lincoln Group, and I know that a lot of people shared that's hopefully gave you some traffic. It was it was a brilliant piece. But tell us about your blawg and or where we can find you on Twitter so that we can add to some of those followers. And it will stay for those. Assume the podcast. That part of what they do is part of their class exercises, a lot of controlled experiments. So we're talking about actually doing one together Twitter chat together with their classes and students based on maximize your social. So hopefully, if we do it, I'll let you all know and leave it open the republic, and we'll see how far we can get the experiment. But send it with yeah, definitely tell us where we can find you.
Well, my Twitter handle is at Jim Barry B A. R Y Junior, and I have a blogged at blogged dot social content marketing dot com.
Often that was Jim Berry and younger
on that John Sharonda. It's my Twitter handle is at John Jay Rhonda, which is to spell Girondins G i r o N d a J o H n. When I'm also on Lincoln as well.
Awesome, thank you very much. I appreciate the time. It's it's really been incredible coming here and learning how far they get with their education is really fascinating conversation. I wish I had recorded all of three hours of it. But anyway, if you are in Education University and trying to figure out how to work social media into your quick and I highly recommend that you connect with these two gentlemen and ask them about their experience, that's it for today. Wherever you are on the world, as they always say, Make it a great day. Bye bye,
everybody. Thanks for listening. To maximize your social. We appreciate your iTunes subscriptions, ratings and comments. If you would like to appear on the show or recommend content, please contact Neil Schaffer at Neil at Maximize Your social dot com. Thanks for listening and have a great day.