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Helping social innovators and non-profits capture eyeballs online

Published:25 November 2019

TOP: A video conference convened by The Social Gurus team to hand over content developed for their client, Candice Fraser, for the Home of Healthy Mums. BELOW: Examples of search engine optimisation through keyword analysis; daily audience activity monitoring; and pilot content engagement evaluation by kind.

Social innovators and not-for-profit managers sometimes lack the resources to consistently engage with their followers through regular posts of authentic social media content.

However, a service-learning program offered by CQUniversity Digital Media is able to offer help, free of charge, through its award-winning consultancy studio.

Senior Lecturer Dr Ashley Holmes says recent satisfied clients have included Candice Fraser, proprietor of Home of Healthy Mums, who says she loved all of the content produced by a student team, operating as 'The Social Gurus'.

"Even better, the team introduced me to software tools that I can use in the future to produce content of my own, and apps to manage its programming, and monitor its impact," Ms Fraser says.

Dr Holmes, who coordinates the Collaborative Digital Media Project, says The Social Gurus were studying by distance from diverse regional Queensland locations but were able to consult with their client in a virtual space.

"They initially evaluated the Home of Healthy Mums website's search engine optimisation (SEO) and suggested improvements based on new keywords," he says.

"They also reviewed Facebook data and explained how this could be achieved by the client. The student team then produced different kinds of content to be released over two test and evaluation periods, demonstrating how this can be achieved.

"The associated analysis of daily Facebook data was also demonstrated. Based on the data evaluation, a month’s worth of daily content in a variety of media was donated to the client in a pre-scheduled format."

Dr Holmes says clients commonly request help with a comprehensive digital communication strategy to establish and maintain their social credibility online.

They may also ask for images or videos of their activities to document or represent themes relevant to their communication plan, or for editing of raw video for use as content in social media.

In 2018, the Collaborative Digital Media Project teaching team won the coveted CQUni Opal award for Engaged Training and Education. This year, Dr Holmes has received a Vice-Chancellor's Award for Outstanding Contributions to Learning and Teaching (Tier 2) 'for leading service-learning experiences where collaborating undergraduates apply their talents to solve digital communication challenges, enhancing CQUniversity’s engagement, and each student’s industry preparedness: win-win-win'.

Dr Holmes currently seeks registrations of interest for the 2020 program. Please email a.holmes@cqu.edu.au for further information.