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Periscope broadast of interview by Lisa Harris with Chris Phethean
Lisa interviews Chris for the Periscope live broadcast. Digichamp Hannah monitors incoming tweets!

Welcome to week 2

In this second week of the course we will explore how social media can be made to work for us on a professional basis - for example to mobilise support around a product or cause, find a job or develop a career path.

Dr Lisa Harris is joined this week by PhD students past and present - Dr Chris Phethean, Sarah Hewitt and Nic Fair.

Lisa and Chris begin the week with an introduction to social media marketing and the opportunities and challenges it presents. Chris is a PhD graduate in Web Science, and his research focused on the ways in which charities used social media to raise awareness and build communities of interest around their work.

During our Digital Marketing: Challenges and Insights free online course in November 2015, we ran an experiment using a social media tool for live video broadcast called Periscope, which is owned by Twitter. The app allows you to watch live videos from your mobile device and interact with the presenters in real time, either directly within the app or via Twitter. In this broadcast I interviewed Chris about his work and we took questions in real time that learners raised on Twitter. You can watch the video of this discussion on YouTube.

In the photo at the top of the page you can see Chris and I during the interview, and Hannah, one of our Student Digital Champions, is monitoring incoming tweets for questions and feedback. The Digital Champions (or Digichamps for short) are drawn from across the whole University. They are a group of keen students from level 1 through to PhD, who help out with building digital literacy skills for staff and students. You can read more about the projects they are involved in, and also our blogpost reviewing the whole Periscope experience.

In the next section I will be joined by current PhD students Sarah and Nic, who you will have already come across as they are actively participating in the Mentoring Team. We will discuss the need to develop our own professional digital networks, and consider how the world of recruitment is changing as employers and potential employees use social tools to check each other out. We will introduce you to the terms ‘employer branding’, ‘paying it forward’ and ‘digital literacies’.

Finally, you will have the opportunity to take part in an interactive exercise and engage with our undergraduate students who are making short videos addressing a ‘big question’ about social media that they have chosen to work on. You can even - if you wish - make your own video and post it online for comments from the students and fellow learners.


Contribute to our live event on 5th May - via social media!

From 16.15 to 16.45 (GMT +1) on 5th May 2016 we will be livestreaming an event taking place on campus and a participation link will be posted for you nearer the time.

Find the time of the event in your region.

A panel including the lead educators David and Lisa, the course mentors and students from the University of Southampton will review highlights from the course discussions and take questions from you.

We believe you will find the content useful and relevant, and we will also be demonstrating the power of the social media backchannel in supporting a live event. More information about this event will be provided in a later step.


University of Southampton undergraduate students have also contributed to this course in a number of ways. We have a programme called Flexible Learning at Southampton in which any student from across the whole University whose programme permits a choice of optional modules can select from a range of innovative inter-disciplinary subjects.

One of these modules is called Online Social Networks and the students are producing and contributing videos as described above. The other module is called Living and Working on the Web and you will find some example blogposts from these students in later on this week which discuss the ways in which they are building their own professional digital profiles using tools such as LinkedIn.

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This article is from the free online course:

The Power of Social Media

University of Southampton

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