Episode 66: Building A Social Media Team From The Ground Up // Higher Ed Demand Gen – Andrew Sogn

higher ed demand gen podcast logo

Read the transcription

Shiro Hatori
Okay, hello, everyone. Welcome to the higher ed demand gen podcast hosted by concept 3d. If you like our content, please follow and subscribe to us on whatever platform you’re listening in on. Maybe it’s Spotify, maybe it’s apple. But if you are on Apple, please drop us a comment. I want to hear what you think about the show. My name is Shiro. And today we will be talking about building a social team, social media team from the ground up. And for the conversation. I’m really excited to have Andrew song join us. He is the marketing and social media coordinator at South Dakota State University. Welcome to the show, Andrew.

Andrew Sogn
Hey, Shiro thanks, excited, too. Excited to chat with you. Thanks for the opportunity.

Shiro Hatori
Yeah, my pleasure. And as I asked all my guests, Andrew, what do you love about higher ed?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, higher ed, is such a unique industry to me, in that every day, you get the opportunity to invest in the next generation and give back right? I think people say it all the time of, there’s always just this energy on a college campus, right. And this, this feeling that every day when you get to arrive at work, there’s something something new to learn something new to discover a new story to tell. And so that’s kind of that’s what gets you out of the bed in the morning, right is chasing down those stories and making an impact and seeing the students prepared to change the world.

Shiro Hatori
Thank you for sharing that. And so we had a prior intro conversation, you told me a little bit about your higher ed journey, right? It’s a bit interesting, because you feel like you moved apartments that usually you don’t move across. Can you tell us a little bit about your background and in higher ed and where you got to this role today?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, you bet. You know, we were joking, a little bit before this, right that I met a three year anniversary this week of starting in my role as marketing and social media coordinator. But it’s fun to look back over my kind of career overall, as you mentioned it a unique background. My background is in athletic communications. And so I spent, I got an undergraduate degree in Sport Management, Business Journalism, kind of minors there. But but had a background in athletic communications, just about a decade of doing statistics, media relations, social media, photography, news, writing, website management, all of that stuff for athletic teams. And so spent about a decade of my life telling those athletic stories, and then when the pandemic hit, and athletics went away, right, I still remember in March of 2020, was this really weird date where I think I covered a softball game on a Tuesday for our SDSU softball team. And then it was done, right, like, the world kind of shut down. We all remember that. And so during those kind of four or five months of pandemic, and working from home kind of realized I wanted to do maybe something else with my career. You know, you mentioned the sad stuff, there’s some phenomenal Sports Information directors in the world that have been mentors of mine and athletic communications is such a unique background, because I think if you talk to an athletic communications professional, they’re able to say, Yeah, I have experience with that, or that marketing tool or that storytelling tool or things like that. And I always kind of looked at myself as a storyteller at heart, right? Like sports information is always that background is there’s a lot of statistics, there’s a lot of record keeping, things like that and certainly an important part of the job but really what I loved and what I really enjoyed was telling stories. And so kind of started to search for different opportunities, my wife and I knew that we didn’t want to leave the town of Brookings at the time, and so knew that maybe if there’s an opportunity on campus to move over to University Marketing, and there’s a little bit of serendipity there there’s a little bit of just perfect timing that in the summer of 20 this roll was newly created and so they were trying to hire for that and what was really nice to to be able to start over without entirely starting over right of being able to do this new transition into the storytelling role of marketing and social for me while also doing it for a place that I knew and appreciated and wanted to stay connected to

Shiro Hatori
that’s fantastic and you know, you said you love telling stories like I don’t actually know too much about the Sports Information roll like when it comes to telling stories like Is it is it is a lot of it like focusing on specific like athletes right and their background and their come up like what’s like a calm One theme that yeah, you I guess you wrote about or you talked about or communicated?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, good question. I think they’re stories every day that we got to tell in that role in my background. Part of it was part of it was just hey, there’s a game going on. Here’s what happened in the athletic contest, right, the jackrabbits or I spent time at like Washburn or Fort Hays State or Middle Tennessee and Augustana. Right, like, pick your team, you got to tell 1000s of those stories of career of wins, losses, championships, heartbreak, things like that. We would do game notes what, I guess industry wise, you’d call them kind of like talking points or like media packets for folks to digest. And then to there are always those features, right. I remember one that I got to write that. Well, two of them coming to mind, I think when you talk about those type of feature stories with the athletes, one of them was on a men’s basketball player called Aaron feagan. Aaron, when he came to SDSU, was a good basketball player and great kid and and along or had family who were alums, and whatnot. But Aaron got diagnosed with a brain tumor, when he was coming to campus. And so just his journey of fighting through that and staying on the basketball team. And I got to tell the family story through that do some really, really cool, interesting interviews and write a really interesting, enjoyable piece for that. So that was a lot of fun. The other one that comes to mind was really, maybe one of my last stories that I got to write as sports information was we had a softball coach named Kiki Stokes, she was an all American at Nebraska. But we had her as a coach here for a few years, and she played professional in the summer. And there was just an incident in her life during the pandemic, when there was a lot of social justice stuff going on that Kiki really started a movement in the softball world. And I kind of called her up and said, Hey, can I tell the story and she said, Yeah, and I got to talk about her and not just what she did, right. And in the softball field and all that we got to talk about her upbringing and how she grew into the person she was and how her leadership and it was really just building for a moment that Kiki could kind of take a stand as a leader and make an impact. So those two are pretty fun stories.

Shiro Hatori
That’s fantastic. And I can tell like, you’re passionate about this, you know, you’re you also communicate the story effectively, like are these parts like, sorry, taking one step back, I’ve I’ve talked to a few social media managers, and more like executive roles that have managed social media teams in higher ed. And one thing I’ve heard over several guests that have been on the show is like, you know, focusing the story back on the student, and using those stories to help amplify the school’s brand, what they stand for, and that’s actually having compounding effects in prospective prospective students and building that awareness versus like just marketing campaigns and better from the business level that are just saying, hey, come to our school, right? Yeah. Is that something you? Sorry? I was gonna say,

Andrew Sogn
you and I or is that something? Same?

Shiro Hatori
Is that something you’ve brought over now that you’re a part of the marketing team, the central team now? I’m just curious Yeah, cuz I see the alignment now. You know,

Andrew Sogn
it’s a it’s a it’s a great connection there for you kind of set me up perfectly for it. We we get to tell stories every day. Now on the university side of stuff. I, you know, part of my job connects with our marketing firm. And I do work on those standard brand recruitment marketing campaigns, right. We just actually monster new commercial here this week. That was a big part of of our work through the summer and doing stuff like that. But as you know, through all of these conversations, and as other folks know, through social media, we’re great at at the slogans and we can do all the commercials and the fun stuff and all of that, but prospective students want to hear from current students, and they want to find a connection or a moment that they can envision themselves in that role. Right. And so a couple of things that we do on the on the very Polish side that I think help support that are on those storylines. We do a meet our jack series, to where we’ve expanded that jackrabbits, so we’re the South Dakota State University. So we do meet our Jack’s. And we tell two students stories and a faculty story a month and then we try to do an alumni story every quarter. So we’re just going to put one out tomorrow on students and community and regional planning or last week, we talked to a faculty member in our aviation program. And so really, those are tied to Who are they as a person? Why did they choose SDSU? How have they found success at SDSU? And then How are they getting ready to change the world? Right? We’re, we’re a land grant institution, we’re an institution of higher ed in South Dakota, that our goal and our mission is, as a land grant that the idea is basically that anyone who seeks the benefits of higher ed, we have a degree for you, right? Like, we want you to come here. And it’s not just that we want you to come here and get your degree and head on out, right, thanks for coming. It’s a, it’s a, we want you to come here, we want to invest in you, we want you to invest in us. And together, we’re going to send you out prepared and support you so that you’re ready to go make an impact you’re ready to go build a better future is what kind of we’ve been calling it. So through those mean, are Jack’s tours, we try to kind of fit those narratives in certainly for the brand. Messaging, right, the polished University messaging, but I also think there are those authentic student stories that it’s pretty easy. When you watch one of those to say, Man, I was that type of a student or, or if we talk to a prospective student, they say, you know, I watched the video on your concrete industry management student, you just did. And my parents had similar background, and I could see that and I want to come to learn that way. So we we use those stories every day to, like you said, not just talk about the the individual and their individual story, but also tie it to the brand messaging and how we’ve teamed together both the student and the university to set themselves up for a great future.

Shiro Hatori
That’s fantastic. You know, one question I had for you that just came about, it’s another sidebar, but are you seeing more people direct message you or message you on the social accounts as you’ve been in the position in the last three years? Because I’m also hearing like, social media has become the channel to like, communicate with the school as well.

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, it’s funny, I would love to there’s a there’s a dream, I’ll put a plug in there, right. Like, I would love to have a team of individuals who could be almost a in online admissions counselor, if you will, to right, like sit right in take all of those questions. We do our best to communicate with people and send them hey, we want you to connect with our international office or you’re interested in biology, let me pass you to my friend who is an advisor that she can, she can help set you up for success, right? Things like that. It’s, it’s funny, there are some times that we get to the point that it’s like, I’m sorry, I only run the social media, I know a lot, I can’t get you, I cannot submit your application for you. Here’s how you do it. Right. And so we do get a lot of people that reach out and talk to us through social and we try to be that conduit for them to to find success or to get in contact with the person that that they need to be in contact with.

Shiro Hatori
Yeah, I mean, like another reason why like a social media team and the social media role in higher ed is, is an expanding role. And it’s a lot of work, like, you know, like being someone who’s responsive. And from a messaging standpoint, it’s a full stack, like customer support role for higher ed, right, you have to like, know where to send people like, it’s a lot of work, especially if you’re like, responsible for replying and getting the right information to students, parents and constituents. Right? It’s very different. Yeah.

Andrew Sogn
We it is we got a great team. I know that I can if if we get a message on Facebook or on Instagram, right that like I don’t know the answer to. We have a great team that I can send a text to I can text our Director of Admissions, I can text an advisor, friend, I even think about a month ago, I had to walk over to the union and chat with one of our traditions coordinators on hey, I have this really random question. Can you help me out and a great team that that lends a hand and see the value in it. So

Shiro Hatori
that’s some dedication that you took the time to walk over to another department who respect that,

Andrew Sogn
you know what, we’re here to make an impact. We’re here to invest in students. I’ll go and I’ll go above and absolutely.

Shiro Hatori
You know, of one fun factor that I’ll let you explain a little bit more as I didn’t really know about South Dakota State Universities like school size, you know how big the school was. And I was actually surprised to see like, there’s a lot of students there. And my numbers are a few years dated, because I just Google that, but can you share us a little bit about like the size of school and institution as well?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, we got a really good institution. We actually just released our enrollment numbers for fall 2023 here last last couple weeks ago. I can’t I can’t pull the exact number out of my hand. Right. Good. But you know, we had our largest we have we have highest enrollment in several years, we also have our largest first year freshman or first year student enrollment, since, like, third largest ever excuse me on that. And so super exciting there to see the growth and the investment on that recruitment aspect, right. The other thing that I think that we’re excited about, and I think leads into maybe some conversations that we’ll have related to our student team, right, is we have 83% retention rate, which so about in I think it was in what it’s been several years since we started this new strategic plan that we had. And the goal was, let’s try to hit 80% of our retention rate at some point. And I remember, we put that out there. And it was this. That’s a lofty goal word, how are we going to do that? What are we going to do, that’s a great thing, if we if we accomplish 80%. That’ll change the course of the university. And we have, have amazing teammates on this campus and hardworking individuals that dove in I know, I mentioned, our advisors, I mentioned, faculty, staff, all that that puts students first and invest in students here. And to say that we had 83% retention, I mean, that changes the course of the university, right like to say that you’re keeping 83% year when some student when some colleges are not close to that 80% number on retention. That’s what we’re really, really proud of, as well as that first year student enrollment. I mentioned our Director of Admissions, but his team, they work really, really hard and are good partners of us. And we try to support and do that. So a lot, a lot of positive movement feel good about those numbers as they came in. And that comes at a time that there’s challenges in higher ed, right. Like we all know, this looming enrollment cliff, as we talked about is coming. We all know that. It’s hard to it’s, it’s hard work to to grow that enrollment, and it’s hard work to see the fruits come out. And so for us to kind of have a good year and take a minute to say great work team, we appreciate everyone. It’s great. It’s fun.

Shiro Hatori
That’s huge. I mean, I would love to record another podcast on the retention number alone, I just presented on topic and did some research. And I think student retention is actually increasing like year over a year since the pandemic. But the average for higher ed as a whole including to your institutions, is 67%. And about 10% of students transfer out but 67% is what that is. So about 77 It’s 77 to stay in higher ed but institution’s ability to keep a student is 67%. So 80 is above 80. It’s insane. Nice work. It’s,

Andrew Sogn
it’s a it’s a fun win for us to be able to put that right there works out done, right, like we did it and now we go hey, can we beat that? What can we do? How do we? I mentioned it a few times. And I’m just gonna start sounding like a repeating record here. But it’s, it’s really about for us of how do we how do we invest? And how do we become teammates with our students, that if they’re willing to put the work in, we’ll match them, and we’ll get you ready to make a difference in the world.

Shiro Hatori
Love that shows you care. Switching topics just a little bit. You know, we talked a little bit about building that student team and building a social media team. On our previous conversation, you know, I learned that you had really started a social media team of students from the ground up. And you know, you’ve had a lot of learning experience there in the last year. Can you tell us a little bit more about what you’ve developed in? Yeah, can you share us a little bit more about what’s happened?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, I love our student media team. They’re a lot of fun to be around. They bring a lot of energy to our social media strategy, conversations, content, things like that. So I guess just to jump in and start from start from the ground floor on this one we had so I started here in this role about three years ago, or three years ago this week, right, as we talked about. And I think we went through a year of kind of evaluation of our social media and evaluation of what we’re doing. And as with anyone, when you come in, as a new person, you kind of have ideas, but it’s really smart to sit back and listen and talk to your stakeholders, talk to your teammates figure out what’s needed. And through that, that time, I think we started to identify, hey, we’re pretty good at telling recruitment stories. We’re pretty good at a new story or two. We have a great news team on our on our University Marketing Group that strategic communications tell us really good stories and we can share that but I’m I’m 33 Right? We have Matt and Heidi and Lowell and Brian is are also kind of team members here and we’re starting to age out of what college college Students want to hear, right. And so as we, as we talk about what we were missing, and really take a hard look at our social that was we’re missing that student piece, we’re missing that authentic student voice. And so as we looked at at staffing and how we’re gonna start doing that we hired, you know, a student to come on board and start doing some social media with us. And that individual did terrific and started with us in 21. And it’s funny, as I was just reflecting on her first video, her name is Genevieve and she was a rock star for us. But I was reflecting on the first video that she ever did. And when we bring it up to her, now she laughs at us. And she’s like, I can’t believe that. Like, that’s where I started. And then now, this is where, you know, as we as she graduated last year, when she finished. But so we started with her. And we kind of realized after a few months of like, hey, Genevieve does great work. But that’s one person. And we’re asking her to tell the stories of campus. That’s, again, not setting her up for success. And it’s not setting up for us us up for success. And so started to kind of had some conversations with our leadership, University Marketing leadership and what we needed to do. And I still remember to, to a tee, a day that I walked into my supervisor, Mike’s office, our director, and I said, Mike, if we want to do this, if you actually want me to grow this type of content, I need a team of four people. And he looked at me and to his credit, he said, Go do it, get it done. If that’s what it takes for us to close that gap and start telling those stories. Let’s get it done. And so, about a year ago, we kind of pulled that team together for the first time. And I remember sitting in that meeting, and having a quick conversation with him saying, we’re going to fail at this, you know, the next three months will be a lot of not not fail permanently, right. But like, there will be failures as we go through this, right? Yeah, videos aren’t going to come together and ideas not going to work, I’m gonna have to tell you know, things or something, it just won’t work out. And so we kind of sat through three, three months or so kind of got the ball rolling. I was just You mentioned some numbers. As we were talking earlier, I looked back and we did ad total, like reels short form content, if you will. That’s really where this group is focused, I probably should have started there is that the student media team is focused on short form content. And so we did 80 of those in 2022 total. But our student media team started in September. And so from like, late September through the end of the year, in 2022, we did 42. So over half of our videos, short form videos were done in a span of a couple months that our team really hit the ground running and started telling stories. So where else do I go with this? Where you tell me what else you want to know what else we can chat about? Yeah, no,

Shiro Hatori
that’s fantastic. Yeah, it’s amazing. Like, you know, I’d love to hear, you know, looking back one year now, like, what has been the outcome for the accounts, right? Like, how, how much have they grown? And just for context for the listeners to like, you know, this is from 2021. But it said there was around 19,000 students, and this is 2021 at University of South Dakota. So if you look at Genevieve, who is one person, like there’s no way one person can handle all the social accounts that come with 19,000 plus students today, right. And so, yeah, it’s I’m sorry, those those are two things. But yeah, I’d love to hear about how the account has grown. And you know, what, how you’re managing such a huge student body with even four people still today?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, I think what we look for is students who it sounds it sounds easy and cliche and whatnot. It’s really not as I say, like, we’re looking for students that get it that want to invest that want to help us show an active campus that want to be a part of the storytelling. And so we Yeah, so we have four students right now. I’ll call them out and give them a shout out, right? We got Alison brand, Tessa and Dylan on our group right now that are a part of our student media team. And we meet every week, they come in, we kind of asked that they bring some ideas to the table, we certainly have some things from the university side that we want to make sure we cover, right, like next month is the start of a free application period for us. So like on the university side, that in a short form real is going to be really important. But it can’t always be what is the university needing to push right? Like that’s what we’re trying to get away from. And so it’s it’s handing them those topics and saying, I need you to do this in a creative way. Or I need you to put the students spin on this. It can be that it can be also as simple as, hey, here’s this current trend going on. I laugh at like, sometimes you just can’t overthink it. We did one over the summer, Bryn brought up to us that do you remember like the Finding Nemo, the kid like singing in the musical had like the Finding Nemo stick, and it’s Yeah, Dad, I’m all alone. We just didn’t we put the FAFSA website in the background because like every student connects to they have to fill out the FAFSA to get to get qualified for student aid, right for for federal loans, like type of thing, right? And no one like I’m, I’m, like I said, I’m 33. I’ve been out of college for 15, or, you know, just about a decade now. And it’s just over a decade. And you still like it fast. And you’re like, I don’t know what I’m doing. I hope I can figure this out i Who knows if I’m doing this right. And so it’s little things like that, that we try to have some fun with to the other piece, I think as we as we say like we’re looking for students that get it to help us tell the story is one of the things that we implemented when I started the job three years ago, and I’m really proud that we’ve we’ve held to it and continue to evolve it and continue to bring it into every conversation that we have is if it’s not about if it doesn’t support telling the SDSU story, we skip it. And so I mentioned trends, right? Sometimes trends are really fun for us to hop on. And they’re super easy for us to, to jump in and or you know, it’s really easy to see a new trend and say, Hey, let’s just do this, let’s have fun with it, whatever. But we always try to connect things back to South Dakota State. And so like, there was one I think of like a trend of like you’re trying to stop someone from doing something in a photo. We could be goofy with that. Right? You can. But like one of our things is we have like ears up, right? And so it was how do we connect it to your friend who puts ears up in every photo, right? And so it’s something like that. Or I think a couple years ago, there was kind of an album, album cover trend going around right of of your life in album cover colors, covers. And the first couple of drafts that came in from a student were like just random pictures. And when I said Well, let’s make it about SDSU. And so we changed it to scenery shots of campus that could be album covers, and did it that way type of stuff. So we always try to like we’ll take them and connect with it and then make it about campus. Another one that I think is always a win and is always trendy. And if you can put Taylor Swift with anything like your engagements go up so. So a while back Brown is one that she’s a big Swifty. And so like she just showed up, she’s like, how about this one. And it was just the Taylor Swift albums in like different scenery shots. And so we did that with campus or like, here’s SDSU as Taylor Swift albums, and all of her stuff and how they connected to us. So yeah, we have we have a good group, they bring good ideas. It’s a lot of fun to, to let them roll with it to the other part. I’ll just keep talking. Right?

Shiro Hatori
Yeah, keep going. You’re on the authentic. Yeah.

Andrew Sogn
We want it to be through their eyes, right? We want them to capture this or there’s one that’s that’s kind of blowing up for us right now that it’s really funny of it’s like when you make new friends, the first week of classes, but you get too attached to your classmates. And it’s like the sound of like, where you’re going the bathroom. Right? And so like, that one’s that one’s going crazy. For us. We’ve had like 25. And it’s like, that was so simple to come up with. But we it but it connects with that age of students that that we’re hoping to get right. Like we’re hoping to talk to current students. We’re hoping to talk to prospective students. I can’t come up with that, that that content isn’t funny if I do it from the university type of thing. But because we have college students do it and we have that age group Connect. It lands and it hits that and it closes a gap that we can’t get to.

Shiro Hatori
Yeah. Yeah, go go ahead finish with that finishes that are Yeah,

Andrew Sogn
there is always that caveat of like, we still have a university social media account to run. And so there are some things that we do have to say no to right. We never want to. We never want to show too negative of of anything, right? Like we want it to be real. We want it to, we’re not going to we’re not going to negatively portray anyone or anything. We always try to be positive and we will always want to build people up or make people laugh without cutting anyone down or without attacking anything. The other part I think is that there are some times that like we just have to say no to ideas because they just don’t land or It just doesn’t quite get done. We had one I don’t know, it was it was probably a year ago that, oh, you know, what a perfect example. So we started doing like mini mics. And Mini Mic. So like, we bring like a Mini Mic and like we

Shiro Hatori
Oh, from, like from the phone, you can connect it to a phone or something. Okay. Okay.

Andrew Sogn
Yeah. And so there was one that we were trying to do. And we have this thing called one day for state on campus, which is a annual Day of Giving that our foundation runs an excellent events. And it’s tied on social media and engagement and number of giving, like number of donors, not amount of donors type of thing. But at the end of the day, you have this big party. And so our students said, Well, let’s go do a mini mike there, and we’ll go talk about this. And a couple hours later, I hadn’t heard anything, and I texted them, and I’m like, Hey, where are we at? How are we doing content, whatever. And they said, like, we got some stuff, but it’s so loud, and like, you can’t hear anything. And so the mic doesn’t work. And I said, it’s okay, right? Like, it didn’t come together. I would rather not post that and skip the idea, then post something that doesn’t meet our brand standards, or doesn’t reflect us in a positive light. We’ve had other instances, I think back to Genevieve, and I can’t pull the exact video that it was on. But she brought an idea into our office and I kind of said, I don’t know, is this something we really want to do? And Genevieve was still kind of getting used to us and how we worked and all that. And she’s like, okay, like, we can skip it. And I was like, but do you think like we should like I think it’s really funny. I said, then it’s your job to fight for me. Like, it’s your job to fight for that and telling me that, like, I don’t take offense to you. If you look at me and say like, Hey, Andrew, you’re just old man. Like, you don’t get this, this isn’t for you. And so here’s the trend, here’s how it connects, here’s what we need to do. And roll with it. So it’s fun. It’s, it’s good to be able to have some control, and feel good about it. And at the same time, really let our students take the keys and go.

Shiro Hatori
Wow, that Yeah, I mean, one thing I’m hearing is, you know, empowering your student team to, to fight for what they think is right? Because you may have you know, as a manager, like, you don’t really understand or it doesn’t make sense, or you think it’s not going to click, but you know, the student, they get it right there. They’re talking to their prospective students. They’re talking to their age group. And so I think that’s a powerful lesson. And yeah, I’ve definitely had my own fair share of good and bad ideas for social media content, too. So I totally understand like, I’ve had some that, you know, I’ve fallen short. And, you know, just, you guys gotta own up to it, right?

Andrew Sogn
You do. If you laugh at that empowering thing actually just got finished with a event this weekend through SDSU. We have something called Lead state, which is a leadership development program for sophomores. And it’s focused on a little bit of like, the Clifton Strengths, right? One of my strengths is developer. And so it’s like, as you say, in power, like, that’s one of my favorite things to do is like, let someone take the keys and like, what can you accomplish, I’m here to back you up. I’m here to support you. If you if if our student media team needs anything, really they know they’re only a click away, or you know, a text away for me to jump in and help. But I want to see them tell the stories, I want to see them have success, Allison is is one of our students that spends a lot of time in our office. And we have numerous conversations where I’ll say like, Can you can you think back to a year ago when you joined us? And like, did you ever imagine that you’d be you’d be running point on these things or taking control of a meeting? And she’s like, No, I never did. And it’s fun. And we give them real hands on experience to to tell stories and helps us right. Like it, I mentioned all the benefits for us. But to it helps set them up for success, when wherever they’re going is that they have experience taking the reins on stuff and telling stories and learning how the world works.

Shiro Hatori
That’s fantastic. And I just wanted to lay in the audience. And I just had a quick fact check hiccup earlier, I meant to say SDSU, which is around 12,000 students, this is numbers from 2020 to fall, but still large campus. Right. My point I wanted to drive is how do you tell stories when you have 12,000 students on campus right with one person? And so it’s a it’s a heavy job. And yeah, just wanted to bring that up. But yeah, everything you’ve mentioned, you know, super important. I think social media is so hard. It’s always evolving. And so having those students involved in your team is so crucial. Like you say you have to get it right. That shows to prospective students like oh, this school gets it right. And so I feel like it has this compounding effect that it’s sometimes hard to measure right with direct numbers, but like from a philosophy standpoint, like it just makes so much sense right when a company institution is able to really communicate with whoever their prospective students are. I think it’s huge. So thank you so much for sharing all that. We’re just, we’re just at about time right now. And I was wondering where our listeners and our audience could link up with you to learn more about what you’re up to at SDSU?

Andrew Sogn
Yeah, you bet. I appreciate it. I, I looked up and we already had a half hour chat. And I’m just rambling and talking socially. So, a couple different ways. Number one on our South Dakota State University, you can find us on all the major platforms. Instagram is the big one where we talk about our short form content from the university side, that is SD state picks for us. Otherwise, if you go to SD state.edu, there’s links out to all of our social accounts. As for me, send me a message on LinkedIn, connect with me there. Ex Twitter, Instagram, as well, Facebook, anything like that. I know that I think I reached out to you through Facebook originally when we started chatting, and then write an action through LinkedIn and all there so no, feel free to connect with me. Can I add? Can I add one more thing on the social piece that I I’ve been thinking about here,

Shiro Hatori
Shiro your four years here for golf golfer,

Andrew Sogn
it’s your floor, I just get to be a guest today. It’s awesome. I think the last thing that I tell students, and it’s a message that I think you’ll know why I want to share this is as we talk about goals, and we talk about engagement, and we talk about impressions and all these numbers and views. And we certainly have goals from the university end of things of where we want to hit and what engagement rates, we want to be at things like that. But as I tell my students every time is do not get caught up in the numbers, we have tasked you to provide the authentic look at a student experience. And so if if a student arrives on campus, after looking at our Instagram, they can say, it matches what I see here matches what I saw on our Instagram account. That’s number one. The other thing that I tell them, no matter what comments you see, no matter how many likes you get, no matter how many views the reel got last week versus this week, you are way more important of a human. And you’re way more valuable to us as as a jackrabbit and a person and someone who gets to be our teammate than any like anything like that. I think too often social media, right, you can just get so caught up in the likes in the views and all of that. And I try to sit out with group every week. And I don’t tell them enough of how important they are as human beings and as individuals to us. They’re not just likes to us. They’re not just numbers. They’re not just brand messaging. They are. They’re part of our family. We love them. We love to have them around. We love to let them tell our stories. We love to let them know how valuable they are to us. So that’s my final message on social. Thanks for giving me a couple minutes there.

Shiro Hatori
Yeah, absolutely. And you’re of course, that was fantastic. And I think that’ll make a nice sound bite for later. So appreciate you speaking up and fighting for your piece of the pie. That’s fantastic. All right. Well, thanks again. For all listeners tuning in today. Catch us on the next episode of higher ed dimension podcast. And thank you, Andrew for joining. It’s a pleasure and hopefully maybe next time we can record about this amazing retention rate that you’ve been able to successfully accomplish at SDSU.

Andrew Sogn
Good teammates. I’ll definitely connect you with him if you want. Thanks Shiro I appreciate it. Thanks, Andrew.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

The biggest challenge for [Claremont Graduate University] was lack of a centralized map system entirely. Roughly 30 different maps existed on our website pre-[Concept3D], created by various departments to meet their own needs.

Claremont Graduate University
We saw the potential of Concept3D’s platform right away, and it was amazing to see our space come to life in a fully interactive 3D map. We know the platform will improve the overall guest and attendee experience, and we’re excited for all the ways that we can use it for both internal and external needs moving forward.
John Adams, General Manager, Colorado Convention Center
Vantage is committed to exceptional customer service, and the technology developed by Concept3D helps us work closely with potential clients, give them an incredible preview of the data center and offer a compelling way for them to explore the critical details of our facilities.
Steven Lim, Marketing Vice President, Vantage Data Centers
Concept3D’s photospheres really allow us to show rather than tell what separates our studios from others.
Corepower Yoga

We want Rice to be a welcoming destination for art, music, lectures, food, athletic events, lectures – a great place to visit just to enjoy the beauty of our campus. [The Concept3D] mapping system will help people find those amenities and explore those opportunities.

Linda Thrane, Vice President of Public Affairs, Rice University
Our residents are getting more savvy with technology and they will certainly appreciate a tool that guides them from location to location on our campus. Concept3D’s wayfinding capability was the immediate draw for us, but the map and interactive media have been valuable for depicting a bird’s eye view in print materials, or when scheduling an onsite visit. Residents, visitors and even staff find a lot of utility and functionality in Concept3d, and we often hear compliments about our beautiful map.
Mike Haber, Digital Media Manager, Shell Point

The new virtual campus map is particularly helpful to showcase our campus to prospective students and families who are not quite ready or able to physically visit campus. International students are a great example of a group who typically do not visit our campus before enrolling, but really value getting a birds-eye view of the place they’re considering calling home.

Admissions Director at Boise State
The CMS makes integrating our data feeds a simple, easy process. We can update our content feed once and it updates within the CMS and our map simultaneously.
Robby Sietz, Webmaster, Ole Miss

Case Studies

Seeing is believing.

See our technology come together in one seamless experience.
Request A Demo
Try It!
Seeing Is Believing