More good news! In February 2018, Academous was voted as 1 of the top 100 most innovative businesses in Greater Manchester according to the Business Quartely magazine. You can find the full report here (we are on page 12-13).
We are NOT “social media gurus” so we will keep it simple. In this article we want to give you an idea of what happened when we ran a competition – quiz on facebook and twitter last December. Keep in mind that what worked or not worked for us, might work for you or not.
First things first. For those of you who don’t know us, let us introduce ourselves. We are Academous!
In December 2017 we decided to do our first competition through our facebook and twitter account. We don’t use other social media yet such as instagram or reddit. Our digital marketing budget was zero (0) dollars, pounds or euros. We wouldn’t advertise it. If we have nothing important to say, we enjoy the silence. Or if you like, as John Cage has said once;
I have nothing to say
and I am saying it
and that is poetry
as I need it
Keep in mind that Higher Education and especially Research in Higher Education is a difficult industry. Also December is a tough month for social media as there is Christmas at the end of it and people spend less time on social media and more with their families. Or they should.
Since Academous is going to be deployed in the OECD and EU member countries, we decided to run a competition where:
Pretty straightforward, huh? So this is what happened.
It is said that posting images increases the chances for your post to be seen. That is true. But what about colours that are used in images? For our first day -Monday- of the competition we created a white background image with black letters; the post got 50 views. For our second day of the competition we created a black background image with white letters; the post got 56 views. That’s a 12% increase in views.
So for the posts to follow we kept the black background and white letters format. Here are the results; 3rd post -Monday- (74 views), 4th post -Friday- (106 views), 5th post -Monday- (72 views), 6th post -Friday- (37 views), 7th post – Monday, Christmas Day- (50 views). So when we were right in the middle of the competition we reached our pick; 80% of our facebook followers checked our 4th post. That is an impressive number considering that users are bombarded with content when accessing social media.
We can assume that the number of views fell after a certain point as people are preparing for Christmas and they are on the road in order to spend Christmas with their families. The number of our facebook account followers was increased in December from 131 to 138 followers. The increase is NOT related to the competition but because we invited more people to like our page.
Still it is very encouraging that 80% of our followers on facebook check the Academous facebook page.
Our competition hashtag, #findmyuni, never trended. And that’s OK. Actually we have never seen a hashtag for a competition trending. We have a small social media presence so we shouldn’t expect that.
Before we started the competition on twitter we had 161 followers. At the end of the competition, on the 26th of December we had 176 followers. That is a 10% increase and it was all organic.
In December our twitter account reached 11.7k impressions, compared to 4.5k impressions in November, and 5.6k impressions in October.
That is a 120% increase in impressions compared to November and 108% increase compared to the October impressions.
Simultaneously, there is a 147% increase in profile visits compared to November and 135% increase in profile visits compared to October. Of course we tweeted 50% more in December compared to November and 80% more than we did in October.
The boxes marked in red show the days that we posted the name of Universities for the competition. In total we increased the daily impressions by 110% compared to October and by 150% compared to November. What is interesting is the peak marked in green. No retweets are visible anymore concerning the two posts. Our guess is that the post was retweeted by an account that is now deactivated because it was a twitter bot(?).
Will we do it again? The answer is yes. Just be patient. Easter is coming.
Academic Rankings of World Universities (ARWU) is a list of top Universities published every year since 2003 by ShanghaiRankings Consultancy. It is also one of the oldest if not the oldest Ranking tables for World’s top Universities.
We had a look at the 2003-2017 and we put together a nice infographic. Until 2016 ShanghaiRankings COnsultancy was listing the top 500 Universities in the World. In the latest tables the top 800 Universities are included. Although we do not consider ourselves experts in World Higher Education, it is obvious from the analysis that:
– Quality of Higher Education Institutions has improved over the years. Since 2003 the number of countries with at least 1 University appearing on the tables has increase gradually (from 39 in 2003 to 45 up to 2016 and to 56 in the 2017 tables).
– Some countries have seen the number of their Universities remaining more or less the same. For example there were 42 German Universities in the 2003 tables and 38 Universities in 2016 tables. UK Universities show a similar trend.
– Other countries have seen the number of their Universities declining. There were 38 Japanese Universities in the 2003 tables. In 2016 only 16 Universities from Japan were in the top 500 Universities.
– A few countries have seen the number of their Universities increasing. In 2003 Australia had 13 Universities in the top 500. In 2016 23 Australian Universities made it to the top 500 world Universities. Higher Education in China has seen major improvement since 2003. In 2003 ARWU tables only 8 Universities were included in the world’s top 500 Universities. In 2016 41 Chinese Universities made it to the top 500. In 2017 ARWU tables China is in 2nd place in terms of number of Universities, followed by UK and Germany.
– Since 2003 the percentage of Universities from the OECD member countries in the ARWU tables has been declining (from 93% in 2003 to 77% in 2017). BRICS – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa- have seen a gradual increase in the number of Universities ( from 4% in 2003 to 15% in 2017). Also more Universities from countries that are not in the OECD or BRICS made it to tables (from 2.6 % in 2003 to 7% in 2017). More Universities from countries such as Saudi Arabia, Malaysia and Thailand can be seen in the World’s top Universities of the last few years.
– The increase in the quality of Higher Education in Asia is also obvious from our final pie chart of our infographic. There are more Asian Universities in the latest ARWU rakings than Universities from North America. European Universities are still in the 1st place.
The increase in the number of Universities from China making it to the World’s top Universities has been highlighted before in our analysis-infographic of the World University rankings published by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) and in our infographic-analysis of the World University Rankings published by Times Higher Education
We love data. And because we love data we are trying to make interesting infographics describing trends in global education. Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) is an independent organisation specialising in global education. Every year they publish the World University Rankings, a table with the best Universities in the world. We created an infographic that includes data from the latest table and also all the World University Rankings since 2015.
The trends show an increase in quality of higher education in Asia with an increase in the numbers of Universities from Japan and China. China is currently in the 6th place in terms of numbers of Universities appearing in the latest tables and has recently surpassed Australia. While China had only 27 Universities in the tables published in 2015, today there are 40 Chinese Universities in the latest World University Rankings. Japan follows the same trend and since 2014 Japanese Universities appearing in the tables have increased from 37 to 43.
We are delighted, excited and honoured. Who said that hard work doesn’t pay?
We have recently received an email that we are shortlisted for the Entrepreneur for Good Award for the 2017 Great British Entrepreneur Awards. The awards are powered by Natwest in collaboration with Entrpreneurial Spark aka Espark, the world’s largest free business accelerator. Esparks is based in the UK and operates in 14 locations across the UK.
The winners from each category will be announced in the final Gala, that takes place on the 14th of November 2017.
Thank you very much! You ‘ve been fantastic and we hope you enjoyed it!
This week Times Higher Education published the 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings with the top 1102 Universities in the world. We compared the 2017 and 2018 tables and we made this nice infographic. Enjoy!