1) Stanford University— Stanford, CA; $53,118 per year; enrollment, 799
2) Harvard University–Boston, MA; $48,600 per year; enrollment, 1,840
3) Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Sloan)–Cambridge, MA; $50,353 per year; enrollment, 797
For those interested in understanding how U.S. News calculates their rankings, read here. While we won’t be nearly as in-depth at grading the above schools, we hope to shed light on how they’re doing on Facebook based on overall numbers, content, fan interaction, and key analytical comparisons.
The first business school’s FB Page we looked at was Standford Graduate School of Business. Unfortunately, as seen in the screenshot below, that Page wasn’t even set up for “business,” so to speak, as it’s only populated with Wikipedia generated information.
For a school that should be teaching students how to leverage and position every inch of branding out there in our very competitive “real world,” we have to wonder why they haven’t done the same?
After another search, we found that Stanford also has a Stanford MBA Program Facebook Page that’s actually fairly active. However, the majority of the posts seem to be similarly formatted program announcements, which get pretty boring after reading the first few. Their “Like” feedback reflects the poorly developed content too.
There have been a couple of cases in which Fans ask questions about upcoming programs, and in response the admin. coldly refer them to web pages; in a way that lacks the ardor and intellectual edge one might expect from a world class operation. The last time they even posted, as of 10/12/11 was last Monday, which is over a week ago! Ideally, Pages should post once or more a day with exciting news and updates–miss a week and everyone assumes you’re out of the game!
It’s also a sad state of affairs to see only 65 fans “talking” on this page too. We’ve seen three times better for local mom-and-pop FB pages who are giving social media marketing a serious effort. The one consolation is that they do have the Page default set to display “everyone’s post,” which indicates some level of desire to be social. As of now they are fairly detached, but perhaps they’ll elevate their efforts in the future. It’s kind of like the student who just turns a test in with only a name scrawled across the top–you hope he or she tries harder next time.
The next business school’s Facebook page we reviewed was that of the venerated Harvard Business School. Everyone knows about Harvard, so naturally they should have a rockin’ Facebook presence right?! Well, we were a bit disappointed there too, but for slightly different reasons than we mentioned for Stanford above.
In the below screenshot of the official Harvard Business School’s Facebook Page, we see there are a total of 18,945 Fans, 760 of which are “talking.” We can also see that their last post was a recruiting call for interested business students. 15 fans “Liked” it, which gives them a 0.0791765% rating–way less than the desired 1%.
Now, we come to Sloan MIT Sloan School of Management’s Facebook Page. As we can see their numbers aren’t really impressive either; at least for the reputation they have around the world. While they have worse overall numbers than Stanford, they fall short on interaction numbers (65 vs. 99 “talking”)…but when compared to Harvard, it’s really no contest. It’s interesting to note that they don’t have a “Welcome Page” in place (as Harvard does; note: Stanford doesn’t), but limit posting permissions, with only their admins able to post directly to the Page. The content doesn’t seem brilliant either. In fact, the last post memorializing Steve Jobs (in the below screenshot), dwarfs the immediate preceding ones that are more Sloan School of Management related.
With no best business practices or industry standards in place or obvious knowledge of current social media marketing strategies, America’s top business schools are really struggling. Business schools are always rumored to be ten years behind the curve, and based on what we’re seeing here, those whispers are beginning to ring true. In order for them to be effective, they should be watching America’s fastest growing brands, like Coca-Cola’s Facebook marketing campaign: Crisp. Creative. Cutting Edge. That’s what America’s top business school need to be, if they want to keep pace in the world’s education race.
To learn more about how universities can get up to speed on social media marketing, watch this FastPivot webinar on social media marketing for universities.