On Monday, 19 July, Cheryl Slover-Linett, managing partner of our research partner, Slover Linett Strategies, and I presented findings from research we conducted with CASE on how CASE member institutions use and manage social media. Our panel at the CASE Summit included Andrew Gossen from Cornell and Charlie Melichar, who just left Colgate University and will be joining the staff at Vanderbilt University in September.

Scott Jaschik from Inside Higher Ed attended the panel and reported on the discussion on 20 July. Cheryl and I will present a webinar about our findings for Inside Higher Ed in August and we’re working on a white paper that we’ll release in September. Stay tuned for details on both….

The research is the first survey to look at how institutions use and manage social media across the campus and within units. We emailed links to the survey to 18,000 CASE members and received 968 responses. Interestingly, the respondents reflected CASE membership demographically.

The survey represents a partnership between mStoner, Slover Linett Strategies, and CASE. We worked closely with CASE’s social media task force, which is composed of members of the organization’s three comissions (Alumni Relations, Communications and Marketing and Philanthropy).

There’s a lot of data here and some of it is surprising. But it’s a start and provides a benchmark that we’ll revisit next year. As I work with the data and review the open-ended responses, I expect to share a more nuanced perspective.

Slover Linetts work on the study was led by senior associate Bill Hayward, a veteran institutional researcher who directs the firms higher education practice. This really stemmed from many higher ed professionals asking, What are my peers doing? What are the best practices out there, and how can we improve the way we run our social media? Hayward recalls.

We knew that nearly all organizations use social media to some degree, but this study suggests that its still in a growth phase: most organizations expect to expand their social media activities. The tough news is that few plan to hire more staff to do it. So at least in the short run, administrations will be doing more with less.

Here’s a PDF download of the topline findings from the survey.

Michael Stoner

AUTHOR - Michael Stoner

Was I born a skeptic or did I become one as I watched the hypestorm gather during the dotcom years, recede, and congeal once more as we come to terms with our online, social, mobile world? Whatever. I'm not much interested in cutting edge but what actually works for real people in the real world. Does that make me a bad person? Find me on


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