Social Media Community Engagement Case Study: Loyola University

Social Media Case Study - Using Foursquare To Increase Student Engagement at Loyola University New Orleans

Social Media Metrics

15,424 Foursquare Check-ins, 36 campus locations, 4763 followers

The most important part of any university is attracting and keeping qualified students by building a sense of kinship and community among the target audiences. FSC Interactive saw an opportunity to use Foursquare to help current and prospective Loyola students interact with one another through insider tips, specials and “competitions” for mayorship.

FSC Interactive contacted Foursquare and asked to be part of a prestigious beta program targeting universities around the country. As a result, Loyola University was one of only 14 schools nationwide that was part of this program.

Social Media Marketing Challenge

Freshman class attrition rates are typically greater than any other academic year and are commonly as high as 20-30% according to the National Center of Education Statistics. Loyola University focuses a great deal of the classroom efforts on the first year experience. However, many students are turning online to socialize, with more than 75% spending up to five hours a week on social networks according to a recent Pew Research Center study. In addition to robust Facebook and Twitter presence, Loyola was seeking a way to unify and inform incoming students through online social platforms.

FSC Interactive chose to target current and prospective students of Loyola University New Orleans as well as campus partners and administrators.

Social Media Marketing Goals

  • Allow and encourage engagement between current and prospective students, thereby creating a larger sense of community and affinity with the school.
  • Encourage students to check in and share experiences.
  • Use Foursquare to unite an online generation through a social mobile application.

Execution of Social Media Plan

Foursquare is a location based social platform that creates relationships around checking in, exploring and leaving tips at geographical locations. Students ages 17-23 make up more than 40% of Foursquare users. FSC Interactive contacted Foursquare after hearing about a beta program involving 14 universities from Stanford to Harvard.
Working directly with Foursquare staff, FSC Interactive claimed all Loyola locations in order to aggregate and manage check-ins populated with content about each building with tips and facts to encourage posts. FSC Interactive monitored check-ins with Radian 6 and replied to all check-ins and tips added to build momentum and foster communication.

To build offline enthusiasm, we blanketed campus with guerrilla marketing chalk calls to action and dressed the school mascot in a Foursquare t-shirt.

We also distributed window decals and encouraged campus partners to offer specials.