The Leo Baeck Day School has been part of the 2013-14 cohort of the Jewish Day School Social Media Academy. In this blog post, they share lessons learned and plans for the future based on their experience.
In the new school year next fall, we will boost the priority given to Word of Mouth marketing and the galvanizing of various ambassador groups toward that end.
An underpinning of the campaign will be three important lessons from the Social Media Academy:
- The power of compounding our social network reach;
- Extending our reach by being present in the social media platforms where our constituents dwell; and
- Cultivating a much greater social media culture among our staff and parents.
We’ve made strides in the latter this year…but we only scratched the surface of our potential.
The word of mouth campaign launch will be introduced at the final staff meeting of THIS school year, where I as Communications Director will have the opportunity to address our faculty to plant seeds for a Teacher Ambassador program.
I intend to convey the incredible power of Word of Mouth and how teachers can be ambassadors for Leo Baeck. The first step in motivating them will be to hear their personal “aha moments” …the moments that have made them proud to be teachers at this school.
I’ll share observations of some of the things teachers are already doing that promote the school. Many of our teachers already highlight great moments and programs in the classroom through their teacher pages on our website, entries in the weekly eNewsletter to parents, articles in our biannual magazine, among other venues.
What I want to do in the coming year will be to add more social media venues to showcase their work, both repurposed versions of existing work as well as a venue for new work. I will review social media that we currently use, and discuss other platforms where we want to be and how the teachers can be of help in those places.
We know the messages we want to put forth; we need to use more “tentacles” to deliver those messages and reach more prospective Leo Baeck families and our alumni…two important constituent groups that will be important ambassador groups.
I intend to institute a new blog site, allowing room for thought leadership in the area of innovative educational trends and philosophy, as well as showcasing the magical “Leo Baeck moments” (every school has them) that define the real essence of our greatest assets.
We want a presence on parenting chat sites that afford opportunities for positive comment on our school, and when need be, countering misconceptions out there.
This staff meeting will be just the first shot in what we hope will be a long term campaign of engaging our teachers in advocating for our school, from their computer keyboards, without leaving their desks. This launch will attempt to connect the dots between their engagement as ambassadors to the greater success of the school and to their own careers. This will be followed in weeks and months to come by similar approaches to deputize other ambassador groups: parents, alumni and board members.
The Leo Baeck Jewish Day School has been a participant in the Jewish Day School Social Media Academy, an intensive program designed to help Jewish Day Schools advance their strategic use of social media in areas such as communication, marketing, community building, alumni relations and development. The 2013-14 nationwide cohort of 15 schools was generously supported by The AVI CHAI Foundation. Each of the schools will be sharing insights from their experience through blog posts here with the tag #jdsacademy
Complete the Social Media Self Assessment for your school at http://www.dayschoolacademy.org/assessment