Social media has required schools to reach a new level of transparency. Blogging, specifically, has allowed schools to publish authentic content and forge a strong connection with their community. It has also given schools an opportunity to develop a voice that is hard to replicate on any other platform. Previously, a school would have to rely on journalists or word of mouth to portray the school’s story. This was always a risk on the school, as you would have to trust a 3rd party to represent you in the way you want. Now, you can help define your school’s story.
Heads are the leaders and visionaries of schools. They set the vision, mission and strategy for the school, which is central to their role. Nobody knows the school as well as the head and nobody has the same reach and authority either. This puts the head in a powerful position when it comes to the voice and marketing of the school. To sucessfully market and brand your school, it is essential that the head is involved - after all, people are much more interested in what the head has to say than the marketing person. It is the same with almost every organisation.
Some of the most successful businesses in modern times have all had a clear and focal leader that has communicated well with their audience. Think Apple’s Steve Jobs, Virgin’s Sir Richard Branson, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerburg, Microsoft’s Bill Gates etc.
Let’s use Sir Richard Branson as a wonderful example of social engagement. If you search “Richard Branson” into Google, the first thing that appears is his blog. What happens when you type your head’s name into Google?
- Richard’s Blog
One of the biggest companies in the world are heavily promoting content that their CEO is creating for people. One of the busiest people in the world is frequently creating content for people to consume. Please do take a look at Richard’s Blog and think about the blog posts he is creating and why.
Most school websites have a section or page referring to ‘Community’. Every school has a community but, on a website, it often feels false. This is because you are telling people about your school’s community in a sales pitch - you are trying to persuade your prospects. A head’s blog can change this because you can showcase your school’s community in a real, authentic way.
A community can be developed through blogging. Write an engaging blog post and people will share, comment and discuss. Discussion and commentary will bring people together and personalities will shine through. Responding to comments and questions breeds organic engagement.
Culture & Value
What does it really feel like to go to your school? Is your school a fun, vibrant one? Do you have traditional values, coupled with a modern approach? There are a lot of buzz words that schools throw around when discussing their culture and values. Your school’s head should be the voice of this and there is no better way to do this than through a blog. The head will share the core values, which will resonate with the school’s audience when communicated correctly.
Leadership, Opinions & Personality
Leaders of organisations can use blogs to inspire and lead people. Heads can do the same through their blogs. They are an effective way to informally communicate with people to inspire action. Blogs can be a good way to command influence, vision and authority. Blogs also allow people to gain an exiting insight into the school as well as the thoughts from the head.
Heads can use blogs to establish themselves as thought leaders in their industry. Many will be put off by the fear of controversy, but opinions should be communicated to receive a reaction. Conversations happen because of opinions and that’s exactly what you want from a blog.
Every head has a personality and this should be showcased in a blog. Prospects will reflect on the head’s personality and will want to see authentic, personal and real content.
Is blogging right for your Head?
It completely depends on the head themselves. If the head wants to blog then begin to think strategically about it. If the head does not want to blog then that’s fine. A head that is not interested, have the time, nor the desire just won’t make a blog work. Blogging requires passion and commitment, and it’s not for everyone.
The worst thing you can do is persuade your head to blog when they’re not a right fit. This will lead to disengaging, uninspiring and non-authentic blog posts.
Some heads are already blogging and we have a list of them below. Take a look at their blogs and consume their content. Think about what would work for your school.
Carry on this discussions using #HeadsBlog on Twitter!