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Missouri Southern sees explosion in social media use - KOAM TV 7

Missouri Southern sees explosion in social media use

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Missouri Southern State University says they are seeing an explosion in their social media followers.

The university's marketing department says MSSU's Facebook page has doubled the number of its friends and the MSSU Twitter account shows a 500% increase in followers.

The key is more posting and that is being credited to MSSU Social Media Coordinator Megan Terry, a part-time intern for the Marketing Department.

Terry says posting items like interim President Dr. Alan Marble dancing at his daughters wedding gives students and community members personal insight to MSSU staff. Plus, she says it's simply the best tool to reaching current and future students.

"I think it's just vital, it's how students communicate," says Terry.  "When you see them on the sidewalks they're not looking up, they're totally looking down - they'll find their friends from where they tweeted from before, they'll find them from where they just bumped into them.  It's how they're communicating nowadays."

Terry says MSSU uses Facebook and Twitter for everything from where Roary the Mascot is appearing to weather-related closings.

"I feel like having a student - that they have the right voice for it, they have the right tone," says Cassie Mathes, MSSU's Director of University Relations and Marketing.

"I think it's great," says MSSU student Matti Ott.  "It's a great way to stay updated on the campus.  I've gotten a lot of the updates about what's going on, like where not to go like if there's construction, like there is right now with the statue, they show discounts for the book store."

While students and the community communicate with the university through social media, MSSU marketing officials hope to find out if it's having an impact on enrollment.

"Finding ways to collect data, feedback from students to find out was it social media that influenced you, maybe you saw something on there that made the campus look like a fun place to be and that made you want to go to school here," says Mathes.  "Whenever they write to us and say 'I love what you have on the page, we love the pictures, love the videos, the content is great, looks like a fun place' - so looking for a way to quantify that so we can determine is this bringing us students or is it a retention tool?"

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