The Lonely Social Student

Clubs, Contests, and Cash!

Facebook’s now a landmark for student cash, clubs, and contests. Let me clarify. Do you have a research project and need to solicit research participants for interviews? Do you want to start an academic club or debate team? Or do you want to sell tutoring services? If you flinched at any of these questions, then Facebook’s ripe for you.

I ran for cover from Facebook for years, fearing trolls running rampant on my Facebook page. But once I fired up my Facebook presence, I discovered the power of social media. And you can, too?for academic purposes.

So, prepare yourself for the joys of spending four bucks for a thousand eyeballs peering at your video. Facebook’s powerful. And thanks to Andrew Macarthy’s book, 500 Social Media Marketing Tips, I’ve synthesized ways for you to make your academic grade through a Facebook Page.

– Run a “research question” contest and award a prize. If you want to do research on, say, “eating habits of high intensity athletes,” then host a Facebook contest where people instant message you or comment their experiences with food as high intensity athletes. Specify that all instant messages and comments will be used for research purposes. To get exposure for your contest, pay to boost your Facebook ad, targeting “high intensity training” people in the region you wish to study. Invite people to email you if they wish to participate in an additional one-on-one interview or focus group for your research.

– Run a “student club” event and get friends to subscribe. If you want to host a student club in a specific city, then post the free event on Eventbrite and link it to your Facebook Page. You can specify an audience of students (from any university or just from AU). Then, message the official and unofficial AU Facebook admins to ask about promoting your event through their social media accounts.

– Start an interest group! Create a Facebook (interest) group on your own Facebook page. Ask about promoting it through the unofficial AU students group on Facebook. So, if you want to start a group of, say, math buffs, then create it on your Facebook Page. Then, after you message the official and unofficial AU Facebook admins for permission, promote your group to AU students through comments posted on the page or in the group. Also, contact the Voice Magazine for some free advertising love.

– Teach it! Make a video of your AU class presentation and post it to Facebook. Boost the post with a $3 ad campaign, and watch people come in droves to hear your stuff. You can specify your audience to include people in your age range with the interest of, say, “math” or “philosophy” or whatever, depending on your topic. This option works best for either narcissists or open-knowledge advocates or people-who-learn-through-teaching.

– Sell tutoring! Offer tutoring services through a Facebook Page. Then, promote your tutoring services by creating a Facebook ad. Include a “phone now” button. Yes, on your Facebook ad, place a blurb on your know-how with math and then make a carousel of math textbook images that you own. Request people phone you for a free consultation for tutoring services. Your advertisement will cost around $14 total, for a week of exposure, but you get to narrow your target, for example, to math students within a five-mile radius of your home.

Lastly, I’ve abandoned the “Lonely Student” theme in favor for something that might make you smarter, more successful, or richer, whether You’re a social media pro or a late bloomer. So, fire up your Facebook and get an edge as a social student.