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Analyse, strategise, engage! Marketing communications community gathers at TNC18

Analytics, engagement and social media were the main focus of a joint meeting between the Global PR Network and the Special Interest Group on Marketing Communications, SIG-Marcomms, on Thursday 14 June.

More than 40 people from 22 European countries and 12 organisations from other world regions joined the meeting via videoconference or on site in Trondheim, Norway, following this year’s networking conference TNC18.

Ela Yadzani of CANARIE, presenting at the June 2018 joint meeting of SIG-Marcomms and Global PR Network.

An analytical approach was taken by Ela Yadzani, who gave an overview of a stakeholder metrics dashboard developed by CANARIE (Canada) to define stakeholders and measure their level of engagement with the organisation. Getting such a dashboard established takes a high degree of effort from staff with the right kind of skills and temperament, but ultimately contributes to long-term and strategic decision making. Ela also presented analytical insights into the potential value for NRENs paying to boost content posted on their social media channels.

Social media was a popular choice for a meeting topic, in particular, tips on how to maximise audience engagement. Dimple Sokartara, Digital Engagement Officer at GÉANT, gave an update on some developments with commonly used social media platforms and emphasised the need to start with analytics as the foundation for a strategic approach. She then set the participants to work in small groups on a practical strategy-defining workshop exercise.

Enlighten Your Research

An invitation to consider adding an activity as part of a strategic approach to outreach and promotion was issued by Mary Hester of SURFnet. She outlined the Enlighten Your Research programme, which originated in the Netherlands but has extended to other countries and regions. Examples of how the programme was publicised and received in India and the Eastern Partnership region highlighted the need for strong local promotion and follow-up on a technical and managerial level. Mary indicated the benefits to NRENs in using such an approach to reach atypical network users, promote above-the-net services, build partnerships with other infrastructures and organisations, and source new stories that show the impact of NRENs on real-world research and society.

Impacts and opportunities

Eunjin Hu of TEIN*CC

Impact stories are the purpose of the community InTheField blog site, which has been running since 2015. An update about the site’s metrics and development was provided by its originator Jane Gifford of AARNet. Eunjin Hu of TEIN*CC explored how to showcase impacts and effects of projects, from the perspective of the Asi@Connect experience.

RESTENA’s marketing communications activities were presented by Cynthia Wagner and Maria Ristkok of EENet gave a brief report on a global cloud collaboration meeting that happened earlier in the TNC conference week. The joint meeting participants reviewed TNC highlights from a marcomms perspective, looking for opportunities to follow up in coming weeks and months.

Other opportunities for marketing communications people to meet and collaborate in upcoming meetings were also noted:

Hope to see you at one or more of these meetings!

Further information

The joint meeting agenda and slides are available online.

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