Digital Marketing Assignment: Impact Of Social Media On Business Of Charles Darwin University
Task: Consider their presence in the Australian market only. Examine their website and social media presence (including LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and any others). Analyse the impact of Social Media on their core business. For this purpose, you are required to write a report on digital marketing assignmentfollowing the steps below.
1. Select any institution from the list above that you would like to investigate within Australia
2. Identify all their social media channels and what they are being used for (for example, they may be using social media for recruitment, marketing, sales, creating a presence and increasing the reach etc)
3. Analyse how each of these channels is being used by the business and report this.
4. Establish the positives and negatives of the use of social media. Identify any issues or problems with the current social media usage.
5. Identify additional social media channels that can be used to enhance their business and profits.
6. Provide clear recommendations with a forward planning strategy as to what the business should do, with justifications.
This may include removing some channels that are not reliable, adding on more channels or a better mix, etc.
7. Tables, graphs, visuals may be used as embedded in the text.
8. References will be as per Harvard Referencing style, in-text citations and a list of references.
Background Of Digital Marketing Assignment
In the 21st century corporate world, social media has become an integral part. Senior managers of several organizations across the world are forming digital marketing team that aims at promoting the brand activities. Internet marketing or marketing the brand through social media platforms is marked as an important subset of digital marketing (Atshaya and Rungta, 2016).The objective of these digital marketing teams is to identify several social media channels and post the activities of the organization to attract a greater number of viewers or prospects. Thus, it can be said that social media marketing or integrating business in several social media platforms can have an impact on the revenue generation of an organization.There is no exception in case of Charles Darwin university (CDU) which is located in Australia. The aim of this report is to focus on the impact of social media in the operational excellence and other business activities of Charles Dawin University.
Overview of Charles Darwin University
It is a public university which is located in Australia. The organization was established in the year 2003 and the main campus of the university is located in Darwin. Apart from the main campus there are almost 8 satellite campuses that are located in several metropolitan areas in Australia. The organization is known for providing graduate and post graduate courses to students coming from different parts of Australia. This university also provides opportunities to overseas students. Courses on the basis of wide variety of subjects are provided to the students (Charles Darwin University, 2021). Thus, it can be said that Charles Darwin University has a diverse range of portfolio.
Social media channels used
As mentioned earlier, the rapid development in digital media has been possible with the increase in users of several social media platforms. Brands tend to penetrate into these media to get profitable benefits (Tsimonis and Dimitriadis, 2014). These channels are used by organizations across the world for various functional purposes. It helps in promoting the activities of the business. Constant postings and use of hashtags can be useful for increasing the reach of customers among a greater number of people. There is no exception in case of the chosen university. Charles Darwin university has a page in Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter. Thus, from this it can be said that the management team of this university have opened pages in all the popular social media platforms. The digital team of the organization is responsible for sharing posts that are related to the activities of the organization. Moreover, in Facebook there is a page of Charles Darwin University that focuses on connecting with international students. Students are the core revenue generator of CDU. Students who are adopting for graduate, post graduate and PhD courses tend to be in the age group of 18-25 years. It is found that usage of several social media platforms among millennials and generation Z is more than people who belong to the Gen X.
Fig. 1 Facebook users according to gender and age in the year 2021.
Source: Statista, 2021a.
Fig 2: Instagram users according to gender and age in July, 2021
Source: Statista, 2021c
From the above data it can be found that people who belong to the age group of 18-24 and 25-34 are mostly active on Instagram and Facebook. Thus, using these channels for promoting the business activities of CDU can be beneficial for the organization as the senior team of the organization can reach amonghuge number of prospects. Furthermore, it can be said that these channels are used by the organization for several activities. This university has opened a LinkedIn account and this platform is known as one of the social media platforms that are largely used by professionals. The objective of this platform is to discuss jobs, industry trends and other activities that are related to career advancement and professions.It has been found that almost 53% of organizations across the world have used LinkedIn as well as Facebook for recruiting employees who are skilled and eligible for the offered job role (Acikgoz and Bergman, 2016). The selected university has also adopted the similar strategy. Two weeks ago, the organization has posted a job and the job title is Enrolment officer. The employment type along with the level of seniority has been mentioned in the job offerings (LinkedIn, 2021). Since, a large number of professionals and graduates are a part of the LinkedIn platform, therefore, the reach of the job advertisement increases significantly.
In addition to this,organizations across the world uses Facebook for the purpose of sales and marketing. Almost 2853 million are active Facebook users and it is highest as compared to other social media platforms.
Fig 3. Social media platforms used by several marketers across the world in the year 2021
Source: Statista, 2021c.
Thus, organizations operating in different sectors or different geographical regions tend to use Facebookto increase the reach of their products or service offerings among a greater number of customers in the global market. CDU is located in Australia but has also opening for international students. In 2019, the organization has posted an advertisement campaign in its Facebook page. The main motto of the organization was to promote, how the university provide unique experiences to Australian and other foreign students (Facebook, 2019). Furthermore, CDU has also opened a page in Instagram. The Instagram page is used for revealing the process in which CDU provides advanced learning opportunities to students who have enrolled in the university. From the Instagram posts of CDU,it can be understood that the administrative team and faculties of this university not only emphasize on classroom learning. Along with classroom learning, students are also entertained to be a part of out-of-classroom activities like excursions, contests and many more. Instagram posts reveal that theoretical learning of the organization is supported and strengthened with the help of practical learning opportunities (Instagram, 2021). Thus, from the above discussions it can be said that Instagram helps CDU to perform sales and marketing activities and enhance the reach of the offerings of the customers in a quicker and seamless way. Furthermore, Twitter is also another leading player in the social media market. Eminent personalities include celebrities, business tycoons are active in this platform. They share their ideas and beliefs with the help of their tweets. Similarly, organizational members also open business pages in Twitter. The social media management team of CDU has also done the same. The organization has recently twitted that there is a walk-in vaccination program for the students and the staffs of the universities. The campus address along with timings have been provided in the tweet. Furthermore, work of several researchers who are doing their post graduate degrees or PHDs in CDU is also tweeted from the page of the organization (Twitter, 2021).From the above activities of the organization in Twitter it can be understood that CDU focuses on leveraging Twitter for marking the presence of the organization among prospects and other external stakeholders. The tweets that are posted on behalf of the organization can help people across the world understand how the university management team is focused on health & well-being of the students and their staffs apart from studies. Along with the presence of the brand among a greater number of people, this can also help CDU to enhance the satisfaction of the stakeholders across the world.
Positive and negative aspects of social media
Customers or students in case of CDU are the primary stakeholder of the organization because the purchasing behavior of customers or enrolment in courses by studentscan help organizations or CDU to grow significantly and enhance competitive advantage in the global market. Thus, one of the primary advantages behind using social media is to increase the reach of the brand among a greater number of customers or prospects located at various parts of the world. It is also a cost-effective method of communicating and attracting a greater number of customers (Jones,Borgman and Ulusoy, 2015). Moreover, along with attracting customers through social media channels, getting constructive feedbacks from customers are of utmost importance. Students who have enrolled themselves in CDU, parents and alumni can provide feedback in several social media platforms. The feedbacks can be related to the course structure, teaching process, infrastructure of the universities. Feedbacks are important because positive ones can help CDU to attract a greater number of customers in every academic year and negative feedbacks can help the management team of the organization to improve. Thus, from the analysis it can be said that integration of social media channels is business activities can help organizations to increase loyalty among customers. In addition to this, social media platforms help organizations to increase reach of the brand in the global market. The current business environment has become very competitive. There is no exception in case of education sector. Increase in number of schools, colleges and universities across the world can be threatening for CDU. Social media channels can help CDU to promote their brand in such a way so that it can reach among a greater number of students or prospects. Unique advertisements and social media campaigns can enhance brand equity and wealth of the brand (Hanaysha, 2016). With the enhancement in the brand equity the reach of the organization increases. This can further help organizations like CDU to strive in the competitive education sector.
Fig. 4 Organizations spend on social media ads in 2016 and 2017.
Source: Statista, 2021d.
The above image shows amount spent by several organizations in US and other parts of the world for promoting their brand in various social media platforms.
Furthermore, cost-reduction and profit optimization has always been the major objectives of an organization. Another major positive aspect of Social media channel is it helps in reducing the marketing costs of an organization (Ahmad, Ahmad and Bakar, 2018). The cost of advertisement in TVs and other forms of print media is relatively higher than posting in several social media platforms. Therefore, it can be said that promoting through social media platforms can help CDU to decrease their cost of advertisement and optimize revenue.
In the above part of the report, a wide range of positive aspects of social media platforms and its integration in the business environment has been discussed. Despite, having several benefits, use of social media can also throw major negativity. The objective of this section of the report is to present the negative aspects. If a social media campaign hurts the sentiment of any community or individual across the world, then it can bring major disadvantages for the organization. Once, a content is posted in any social media platforms, it remains forever. Thus, if it hurts the sentiments of any community or nation, it can spoil the goodwill of the organization for a longer time period. In addition to this, social media presence of organizations might not be beneficial for the organization because the problems associated with the firm is clear and visible in social media platforms. Social media marketers tend to face major barriers due to negative feedback in various social media platforms (Nadaraja and Yazdanifard, 2013). When customers provide negative feedback about the products or services of the organization that it reaches to several other people including the prospects. This can decrease the sale of the product or the booking of services of the organization which might have a negative impact on the revenue of the organization. For example, in case of CDU if any student or alumni post anything related to the curriculum or the infrastructure of the university then it can prevent other students from enrolling themselves in the coming year. Thus, the constant effort to maintain a positive image in several social media platforms is often stressful and challenging for organizations across the world.
Finally, the concept of social media or digital marketing is very new. People tend to take these platforms as fun and for leisure activities but when social media gets integrated with business then it often becomes Thus, people are often not aware of the complexities involved in this platform. Moreover, organizations often find it difficult to hire employees who can handle business in several social media platforms. Inefficiency in handling business by the employees can bring major challenges within the organization.
Social media channels that can be used by CDU
CDU is an organization that focuses on using social media channels to increase the reach of the brand among a greater number of customers. Thus, it is the responsibility of the organization to become more active in platforms that are mainly aimed at connecting professionals, fresh graduates and students residing at various parts of the world. Thus, apart from LinkedIn CDU can also use Xing. The objective of Xing is to make platforms available for people that can further help these professionals to find their true self and enhance business opportunities for organizations. It not only connects people from the corporate world or other business environment but this platform is also responsible for providing marketing solutions to people who are in need, it provides e-recruitment facilities to the employers and are also responsible for arranging corporate events (Xing, 2021). Thus, opening a page in this platform can help CDU to get marketing solutions. The digital team can understand the process in which the service offering and the business practices can be made marketable among a greater number of students. In addition to this, Meetup is another social media channel that can be leveraged by CDU to enhance the awareness of the brand not only among the people of Australia but also among international students. The objective of this platform is to help an individual or a business entity to be a part of the group of their choice so that they can increase their connectivity by remaining active within the group (Meetup, 2021). CDU can use this social media platform to organize online events. Faculties, directors, alumni and few current students can be invited to be a part of the event. The online event or the live event via Meetup can help CDU to address large number of audiences from various parts of the world. This will not only increase the reach of the customers among a greater number of people but it also enhances the curiosity of students or prospects towards the organization. Thus, from the above discussions, it can be said that use of social media platforms that aim at connecting professionals and other business organizations can bring more benefits for CDU.
In the above section of the report, the social media activities and social media strategies adopted by CDU has been discussed. While discussing it can be found that adopting of modified digital marketing strategies can bring more benefits to CDU. Thus, the objective of this section of the report is to provide few recommendations on the digital planning strategies of CDU.
• It is highly recommended to the digital team of CDU to start becoming activities in other professional networks like Meetup and Xing. This can help them to connect with more professionals and students and it can also enhance the awareness of the brand.
• In the above section of the report, it has been found that Xing is a social media platform that helps organization to get marketing solutions. Thus, it is highly recommended to the digital team of Xing to mix the usage of social media platforms. The digital team of CDU can take marketing solutions from Xing and this can be further used by the organization to post relevant contents in Facebook and Instagram.
• Instagram users are high and use of Instagram for promoting the brand is not a bad option but it is recommended to CDU to emphasize more on the use of professional networking sites. Professional networking sites like LinkedIn, Xing and Meetup will not only help CDU to enhance the awareness of the brand but it can also be used by the organization to recruit employees, engage themselves in group discussions and gain knowledge about the current trends of the industry.
• It is also recommended to the digital team of CDU to organize group events and engage people from different parts of Australia to participate. Group discussions or online quiz contests can be conducted by the organization and it should be made open to all students across the world. This might increase the awareness of the students and it can also enhance the curiosity of students towards the university and its curriculum offerings.
The main aim of this report was to focus on discussing the impact of social media channels in the core business activities of an organization that is based in Australia. The organization that has been selected for the report is Charles Darwin University. The report concludes that Charles Darwin University has opened pages in several social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Opening of new pages in these social media channels have helped the firm to post jobs, increase the reach of the brand among a greater number of customers and focus on sales and marketing strategies. Furthermore, from the report it can be found that social media channels or integration of social media in the core business activities can increase customer loyalty, reduce marketing costs and increase the presence of the brand in the global market. Despite this, use of social media can also be destructive because use of language in campaigns can destroy the goodwill of the organization in a significant way. In the final part of the report it is recommended to the digital team of CDU to start using Xing and Meetup. This can help the firm to promote their product offerings more firmly. It is also recommended to the organization to focus on mixing up of usage of social media platforms. Xing which is social media platforms can be further used by the organization to get solutions of branding, marketing and promotion which can further be used for making posts in platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
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