Social Media Tools – It’s more than Facebook and Twitter.

bigstock-social-media-communication-in-281618811Social Media?  I’ve got this!  Facebook, Twitter, YouTube.  If those are the only tools you’re using in your social media arsenal, you are missing out.  This week in our Knowledge and New Media (COM 510) course, we were asked to read about the Social Media tools described on the AIDS.gov website and to try three of the tools listed on the website.

QR Codes
A QR – or quick response – code is a bar code that directs users to websites, videos, and information.  With an easy to download app on their smartphone, a consume can start the app, point their phone at the QR code and instantly be directed to a link.

One way in which the AIDS.gov website uses a QR Code is to direct people to clinics in their area.

clinics

I found a QR Code creator through a quick Google search and created a code for the website for BROTHER, a band I work with.

BROTHER

Go ahead, check out the band…

I have used QR codes a couple of times.  One time at the school where I worked, I created a flier with a QR Code that directed parents to a site at which they could take a survey.  I was really excited about the idea, but the response was pretty minimal.

While I see the “cool” factor of a QR Code, I don’t think it would immediately come to mind if I was planning a media campaign.  I question how widely this tool is used by the average person.

Text Messaging
Most people use text messaging for personal communication.  It’s use as a social media tool and a communication tool for businesses is becoming more popular.  According to the AIDS.gov website, adult use of texting increased from 65% to 75% in a two year period of time.  I now receive text reminders from my cell phone and electric companies reminding me when a bill is due or thanking me when I’ve made a payment.  There are now websites that teachers can sign up for so that they can communicate with their students and parents via text messaging.  As people struggle with overflowing email inboxes, I can see how getting text messages from your child’s teachers would be a great way to keep up.  In addition, younger people tend to communicate more via text then email.

Office Hours Registration – Scheduling On Line
Aids.gov uses Eventbrite to allow people to make appointments on line.  While I would not have thought of this as a social media tool, I love the ability to make an appointment on line as opposed to waiting until my doctor’s office or pet’s groomer is open.  I’ve used something similar when making an appointment with the lab to get blood drawn.

In my work for a public school district, I can see this type of social media tool being beneficial for parent groups to solicit volunteers and to register people for various classes.  I find myself if there’s a way I could use a registration tool in my work.

It’s interesting to learn that social media goes beyond Facebook, Twitter, and You Tube. I am amazed at the many other tools that are out there.

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