Social media is not really new anymore; I just celebrated a decade of Facebook last year (okay, celebrating's a strong word). So to call it an innovative marketing tool may be a bit behind the times, but it is something neat all the same. Our Ag Business, Leadership, and Economics (ABLE) class has had a ball with using it to market our plant sale, which is currently in the throes of the event as we write.
We've identified hashtags for this year's endeavor - #sutherlinffa and #FFAflowers. We've even gone so far as to use Facebook post boosting on a very limited basis to see what we can accomplish. The clever thing is that you can really target your Facebook audience you want with the tools available, which makes it great to apply those theoretical marketing plans. This means geographics, demographics, interests, and more. Pictures, videos, posts, reshares and more have led to more than one of my students being unfriended by their peers - but loved by their Facebooking grandmothers - I'm sure. But we've also cracked 6,000 post views in the past 48 hours within 25 miles of our greenhouse - and Facebook tracks such data for you!
With that, here at the end of the process, I feel like you could also use social media to chart the emotional rollercoaster these 20 students have under gone the last few months. Most are not of agricultural origins, so the idea of raising a crop, tending to all its needs, surviving disasters, and more have been all new experiences. And like other teenagers, they tend to blurt said experiences and feelings to the world.
So, while I have no data to back it up, here are the hashtags I predict you might see appended to Tweets and status updates over the course of the past five months to now:
In early February:
In late February:
In early April:
In mid April:
In late April:
Enjoy the spring. Keep on #tagging.
What would your students tag? What would YOU tag your posts with? #youcanleadastudentowater #butyoucantmakethemwaterlongenough