AEA365 | A Tip-a-Day by and for Evaluators

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Hello, my name is Jayne Corso and I am the Community Manager for AEA. Posting on multiple social media sites requires good imagery, and on a low budget this can be tough. Images make your content eye-catching and can even add context to a post. On all channels, posting with images out preforms those without images. Canva is an easy and free way to create your own graphics, charts, infographics, and images. Today, I will show you how to create an image using free Canva formats, layouts, and photos.

Rad Resource: Choose your format

Each social media channel has a preferred image size. This size will allow your photos to be clearly viewed in a newsfeed. Canva takes the guess work out, and helps you create images specifically for each channel. They have an array of sizes you can choose from. You can even create a custom design by entering your own dimensions. For this example, we will be choosing the Facebook post format.

Rad Resource: Find a Layout

Canva offer many free layout that you can edit with your own content. Simply click on the layout you like and it will be added to your canvas.

Rad Resource: Edit your image

Once you have selected your desired layout, you can now add photos and text to your image. If you have a photo you would like to use, simply upload it to Canva under “uploads”. If you don’t have a photo, you’re in luck. Canva offers high quality stock photos for free. Browse the collection and find the one that works for your graphic. Once you find the photo, drag it onto the canvas.

Next, click on the text of your image and update the content. You can also change the color of text and backgrounds as you desire.

Once you are happy with your creation, download your image by selecting the “download” button in the right corner. Now you can post it to Facebook and promote your webinar!

I look forward to seeing lots of designs in my newsfeed!

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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meHi my name is Jayne Corso and I am the Community Manager for AEA. I was recently asked how I find and choose articles to post on the AEA social media sites, so I thought I would share my resources with everyone. When posting on social media, I try to maintain a good mix of association news, to keep our community informed about AEA, and evaluation news, to keep our community informed and about trends and lessons learned in evaluation. Here is where I pull my information:

Rad Resource: Twitter

Twitter is an excellent resource for finding content. I will often search relevant hashtags such as #Eval, #Evaluation, and #DataViz to find posts relating to these topics. I do have to do a little digging to make sure I find articles and resources that are informative, reliable, and can relate back to our community – but the content I find is often very rich and diverse.

In addition to searching on twitter, I follow many evaluators who are using the platform. This is helpful, because I can then see what other evaluators are posting 1) to share their content on our sites and 2) to gain a better understanding on what content is relevant and trending in evaluation. Here’s just a few evaluators I follow:

annkemery | Ann K. Emery

clysy | Christopher Lysy

EJaneDavidson | Jane Davidson

EvaluationMaven | Kylie Hutchinson

John_Gargani | John Gargani

Rad Resource: Evaluation Blogs

I follow a lot of evaluation blogs to find insights from our members. I often share posts that I believe are relevant and will resonate with our community. These blog posts allow AEA to share multiple points of view on evaluation related topics. Below are a few blogs that I use for my “go-to” resources:

BetterEvalution

Evaluation is an Everyday Activity

Evergreen Data Blog

Ann K. Emery’s blog

Eval Central

Rad Resource: Resources from AEA

AEA has a whole page of great resources for finding evaluation content. Click here to see evaluators that are active on social media and an array of evaluation related blogs. This is a great starting point for curating content for your social media posts!

I hope this information is helpful. If you have other great evaluation resources, please share them in the comments. Get busy posting!

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Hi my name is Jayne Corso and I am the Community Manager for AEA. As we reach the end of 2016, I wanted to provide some insights on what is predicted for social media platforms for 2017. I put together this list based on numerous industry blogs and my own insights. Let’s see what happens in 2017!

2017

Hot Tip: Quality Vs. Quantity

Platforms such as Instagram where users typically post once or twice per day are on the rise. This relates to the need for content that has more substance and is not overwhelming. Twitter is built for multiple posts, but often the posts have a short lifespan, and can clutter a news feed. Will we start to see twitter decline or change in the near future?

I also believe users will be looking for trustworthy platforms that are dedicated to showing true content. In the wake of speculation of social media spreading “fake news”, I expect Facebook and similar platforms to make this a priority in 2017.

Hot Tip: Show Users Your Event

With the popularity of Facebook Live and Snap Chat, it is no longer enough to just post about an event. You have to show the event through real-time videos and pictures. These tools make your users feel like they are a part of the action.

Hot Tip: Storytelling Will Continue to be King

Although no stranger to 2016, storytelling will be important for engagement in 2017. Similar to presenting your evaluation findings, your social media posts should go beyond recommendations or “the sell” and show the big picture and overall benefits. This is how you create online discussions and avoid the dreaded one-way conversations.

This will be my last post before 2017, so I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday season. I look forward to see what is in store for 2017! Add your predictions for 2017 in the comments.

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Hi my name is Jayne Corso and I am the Community Manager for AEA.

With so many different social media platforms to choose from (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram…) it can be hard to identify the platform that works best for your content and the people you are trying to reach with your message. I have outlined a few insights on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest that could help you determine where your content fits in on the social media spectrum.

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Hot Tip: Facebook

The most prominent age group on Facebook ranges between 25-34 years of age. This is closely followed by 35-44. Facebook requires unique content which can come in the form of photos, links, or videos. It is often difficult to re-purpose content on Facebook, because of the longevity of a post. However, the benefit to Facebook post longevity is that you do not have to post as often as other platforms, such as Twitter.  Depending on your desired activity, Facebook posts can occur a few times a week versus every day.

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Hot Tip: Twitter

Twitter and Facebook are very similar in terms of activity users. Twitter also attracts 25-34 years of age  followed closely by 35-44. The main difference with Twitter, is the life of the post. Twitter is saturated with content, which means your post might only be seen for a limited amount of time before it is pushed to the bottom of a news feed. Due to this short post lifespan, to use Twitter effectively, you need lots of content! Content should be posted to Twitter every day. This content should be a mix of original and shared (retweeted) posts.

Twitter is a great platform for re-purposing your content. Because of a Twitter post’s lifespan, you can repost the same or similar content multiple times to capture the best engagement.

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Hot Tip: LinkedIn

LinkedIn captures a similar age group as Twitter and Facebook, however the active users tend to be more professional and with some type of higher education. LinkedIn is a great place to post content that is relevant to education, career advancement, and research. The active users on LinkedIn are motivated by career goals and professional networking. Content for LinkedIn should be unique similar to Facebook.

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Hot Tip: Pinterest

Pinterest is by far dominated by women. To be successful on this platform you must have an archive of photos or visuals to choose from. Pins that are posted to Pinterest have a long shelf life, due to the active sharing and re-pinning of content. Pinterest is a great tool for sharing your data visualization examples!

I hope this blog provides a better understanding of each platform and helps you decide where to take your content. Use the comments below to share your thoughts.

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Hi my name is Jayne Corso and I am the Community Manager for AEA. Facebook is a great tool for reaching other evaluation professionals. The platform makes it easy to share relevant articles, videos, and thoughts with your followers. However, It can be difficult to get your posts on your follower’s newsfeeds because Facebook only shares 12% of your content. You can increase this percentage by writing effective and engaging Facebook posts!

Hot Tip: Keep your post short

Facebook posts should be 1-3 sentences. If a post is too long, a “see more” button will appear. Nine times out of 10 Facebook users will not click on this button and read the rest of your content. Keeping your post short and sweet can make a big difference in engagement.

Hot Tip: Ask you followers to interact

Asking your followers to comment encourages engagement and involvement. You can use this tactic by stating “like this post if you agree” or “share your thoughts in the comments”. Another way to encourage engagement is to ask your followers for advice. This tactic often starts a discussion on your page.

Hot Tip: Make your links compelling

When posting a link to an article on your Facebook page, make sure the link has a compelling photo and interesting title. These are editable fields, meaning you can customize how your link appears. Sometimes links can pull titles and pictures that are not relevant to your content.

Hot Tip: Use different types of posts

Mix up the content formats you are posting to your page. Use a mix of links, pictures, videos, and albums to make your page more interesting.

What are your favorite Facebook tips? Tell us in the comments!

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Hello, my name is Jayne Corso and I am the community manager for American Evaluation Association and the voice behind the AEA Facebook page.

If you manage a company Facebook page, you might have noticed a drop off of “likes” recently. Facebook has begun removing memorialized and voluntarily deactivated accounts from Pages’ like counts. This change ensures that data on Facebook is consistent and up-to-date—but could mean a drop for your analytics. Although some Pages might lose “likes,” they could also gain a more accurate way to track their followers. I have compiled a few tips for tracking your analytics and gaining more visibility for your page.

Rad Resource: Take advantage of Facebook “Insights”

Facebook offers Page Insights after at least 30 people have liked your Page. Use this tool to understand how people are engaging with your Page. With this tool, you can see your Page’s growth, learn which posts have the most engagement, find demographic information about your audience, and identify when your audience is using Facebook.  This data is available for free and can easily be customizable for time frame and downloaded to excel.

Rad Resource:  Use Google Analytics to track effectiveness

Tracking your analytics through Google allows you to see how many people are coming to your site from social networks, understand the website pages they are most interested in, and gain a better understanding for how your audience is engaging with your web content.  To find this information, enter your Google analytics account and go to “Acquisitions”. From here you can look at the performance of your social networks as an overview or look more specifically at referrals, activity, and user flow. All of this data allows you to gage the effectiveness of your social campaigns.

Hot Tips: Increase your Facebook likes

Finally here are a few simple tips for increasing the likes on your Facebook Page—hopefully you can make up for any followers you lost when Facebook made their changes.

  • Add the Facebook icon to your website, so visitors know you have a presence on the social network (Place the icon high on the website page, near your navigation)
  • Add the Facebook icon to your email communication or blog to reiterate your presence on Facebook to your subscribers
  • Cross promote your Facebook page on your other social media sites. You may have followers on Twitter that have not liked your Facebook page or didn’t know you had a Page

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Managing multiple social media channels for your business or personal use can be difficult because each social channel is on a separate site. Managing these sites can take a lot of time out of your day, that’s why I use Hootsuite to manage AEA’s social channels, including Twitter and Facebook. Hootsuite is a social media management tool that helps you monitor your social channels and track what people are saying in the field. I have compiled a few ways you can benefit from Hootsuite!

social

Rad Resource: Monitor multiple channels in one place

The best feature of Hootsuite is that it allows you to manage multiple social media streams on one dashboard.  The tool allows you to view:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook Profiles, Events, Groups, and Pages
  • LinkedIn Profiles, Pages, and Groups
  • Google+ Pages (currently not personal profiles)
  • Foursquare

You can post and monitor your social media pages all from this one tool. You can even post the same content across multiple platforms. However be careful here—your Facebook fans and Twitter followers may have different needs. Also, Twitter only allows 140 characters whereas Facebook allows much longer and richer posts with photos and videos.

Rad Resource: Schedule Posts

The scheduling feature on Hootsuite is very beneficial especially for the busy professional who still wants to have a presence on real time social conversations. Hootsuite allows you to determine the time, date, and channel for your post. We recommend not posting too far in advance in order to stay relevant with your followers.

Hot Tool: Customize your dashboard

Hootsuite allows you to customize the information you see about each of your social media channels.  For example, if you add your Twitter account to Hootsuite, you can customize the dashboard to view your newsfeed, mentions from other twitter users, your tweets, new followers, retweets, scheduled tweets, and the list goes on. This allows you to see all the pieces of information that are truly relevant to your needs.

Rad Resource: Monitor topics and hashtags

In addition to creating streams for your social media channels, you can create streams for keywords and hashtags which allow you to follow conversations in the field. By simply choosing “add stream” then select “search” or “keywords” you can enter keywords, phrases, or popular hashtags. Follow words such as evaluation, eval, data visualization, or #dataviz. Hootsuite will show you all of the tweets and posts related to this theme or topic. This is a great way to stay on top of the latest conversations in the field.

Click here to learn more about getting started on Hootsuite.

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Venturing into social media can be a daunting task since the various platforms are growing so quickly. Developing a checklist can be an easy way to get started in social media and organize your social strategy and routine.

I have outlined a few ways you can start developing your social media checklist.

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 Define your audience

Identifying your target audience on social media is important. It’s easy to say that you want to target anyone or everyone who is willing to give you a like or retweet, but is this really aiding your social media goals or purpose and is your content being used effectively?

By identifying who you want to target—whether that group is students, evaluation professionals, non-profit workers, or those focused in data—you can create targeted content that will be more valuable for your followers and result in a higher return on investment for your social strategy. You can start with the basic demographics questions: age, occupation and education. Then you can identify their interests.

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Develop a content strategy

It’s important to develop some sort of content strategy when venturing into social media so you can stay relevant with your audience. This helps you stay on track and keeps you from sharing anything and everything. Once you have identified what your audience is looking for, you can develop posts that match their needs.  Important questions to ask yourself when developing content are:

What is important to your audience?

What are their questions or concerns?

What do they want to learn more about?

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Set up your check list for each channel

Once you are ready to start posting, you can set up your personal checklist and scheduling guide which will help you reach your activity goals. Below are a few examples:

Facebook

  • Publish 1 post each day
  • Dedicate two days each week to blog content from evaluation sources
  • Monitor and respond to comments once a week
  • Review insights at the end of every month

Twitter

  • Publish twice daily
  • Retweet relevant content to your followers twice a week
  • Follow 15 new and relevant users or organizations each week
  • Follow industry hashtags once a week

These are just a few examples. You can create a checklist that works with your schedule and social goals.

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Hello, my name is Dan McDonnell and I am a Community Manager at the American Evaluation Association (AEA). Facebook recently announced a couple of key changes to its user experience – one that has already taken place, and another on the horizon – and I wanted to share how that may impact how you use the social network. Both changes focuseon how you interact with and receive content from Fan Pages that you like, and ultimately seek to give you a better user experience on the platform.

The first change took place on November 5th, and saw Facebook removing the ‘Like-Gate’ feature available to Fan Page owners. Ever seen posts or ads that invite you to ‘Like’ a page on Facebook to receive access to unique content or to enter a contest? No more! Facebook felt that by allowing Page owners to entice people to like their pages through artificial incentives (enter for a chance to win a free iPad!) created a poor user experience, lessening the likelihood that those who ‘Liked’ pages would actually engage with the company or brand. Like-Gating is history.

The second change will hit Facebook in January 2015, and will change the way in which the algorithm that informs the posts in your Facebook News Feed handles organic (non-paid) posts from Fan pages. In the past year, Facebook has placed an increased focus on promoted posts and pages, and encouraged companies and brands to spend money to get into user’s news feeds. Further limiting the amount of non-paid posts from Fan pages that will be served in your news feeds is Facebook’s way of doubling down on this strategy. You’ll soon see less clutter and spam from Fan Pages you like, and the posts you do see will likely be advertisements or promoted posts – subject to Facebook’s rigorous guidelines to ensure relevancy.

All in all, it seems that these changes are mostly a net positive for users of Facebook, and create some challenges (and opportunities) for companies and brands who manage Fan pages on Facebook. What do you think of these changes?

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Hello, my name is Jayne Corso and I work with Dan McDonnell as a Community Manager for AEA. As a frequent social media user, and one of the voices behind @aeaweb, I am always searching for new tools that can organize my social media feeds and help me stay up-to-date on the latest conversations, topics, and hashtag surrounding the evaluation community.

HootSuite is my primary tool for monitoring industry news and evaluating our social media posts. The ease of access to industry information that that this tool provides makes research much more effective – and easy!

Rad Resource: Manage your Social Media Accounts Through the HootSuite Dashboard

Each HootSuite user has a personal dashboard, which can be customized to fit posting or research needs. The dashboard can manage multiple platforms including: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and WordPress— creating separate tabs for each platform. Each tab can be customized with ‘streams’, (feeds, keyword searches, lists, etc.) so you can curate the most relevant information on one screen.

This is a great way to see how the evaluation community is engaging with @aeaweb’s daily Tweets. The different streams help better identify good times to share posts, what content is most popular, and the best ways to present information. Using these insights, AEA seeks to better connect with the evaluation community on Twitter and other social media channels.

Here is a quick-and-easy guide to adding tabs and streams to your dashboard

Rad Resource: Using Hashtags and Keywords to Follow the Conversation

HootSuite is an excellent resource for staying connected with other evaluators on social media and joining evaluation-related conversations. Add streams to your dashboard that follow keywords or hashtags and HootSuite will search social platforms for the most recent and relevant posts. This is where you come in – jump in, and say hello! Offer your thoughts, insights, and experience to add value to one of the many conversations that are happening. You may just meet some new friends!

Choosing your hashtags depends on the topics you are interested in, be it evaluation (#eval), data visualization (#dataviz), or even helpful excel tips (#exceltip). Hashtags also allow you to follow along with industry events like AEA’s Evaluation 2014.  By adding #Eval14 as a stream to your dashboard, you’ll receive the most recent and updated information tweeted and what other evaluators are saying about the event.

Want to learn more? Here’s a helpful resource from Fresh View Concepts on how to set up your HootSuite Dashboard.

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org . aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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