Social Media Resources

If you're responsible for managing social media on behalf of NIU it is critical to have a strategy, to know your audience, and to have a plan for creating content that resonates with your audience and helps you achieve the goals you've set for your social accounts. We recommend taking advantage of the social accounts that currently represent NIU, since most social platforms have an algorithm that favors accounts advertising on their platforms.

We do understand that in addition to the two full-time employees who act as administrators for all accounts representing official NIU departments, offices and colleges, student staff are often tapped to help create content. The resources we've identified below can help staff responsible for managing social media at NIU sharpen their strategies and achieve their goals. If you've read through these resources and still have questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to Institutional Communications for help at

Social Media Best Practices

  • Hootsuite's blog is a great resource if you're looking to improve social media strategy for the accounts you manage.
  • Also on Hootsuite's blog, you'll find information on ensuring content shared on social media is accessible by incorporating inclusive design strategies and tactics
  • Sprout Social maintains an up to date guide on sizing graphics and photos for different social media platforms.

Content Calendar

A content calendar is an essential component of your strategy, without a content calendar and a plan, maintaining your social media presence can feel overwhelming. If you have goals for posting a certain number of times to each channel, seeking out and planning content will help you understand if your goals are realistic or if you need to scale back or seek additional help from your department. We utilize the free, web-based project management tool, Airtable to manage our content calendar. We've created a read-only content calendar template for you to review. 

You can organize by platform, subject matter and if you scroll to the right you'll see all the features that our team frequently uses. Create your free, Airtable account using your NIU email address. Feel free to share this content calendar with other people running social media in different departments and divisions, they can plan to share your content after you post it to support you and vice versa.

Business Guides

  • Facebook - Buffer offers a comprehensive guide on managing Facebook for Business Pages. Buffer also has helpful information for understanding Facebook's algorithm.
  • Twitter - maintains a helpful blog with tips and advice for people managing Twitter accounts on behalf of a business or brand.
  • Instagram - both Hootsuite and Facebook (owner of Instagram) have resources for using Instagram for Business.

Additional Resources

If you want to go beyond the analytics that individual social channels provide, check out these tools: Buffer, Hootsuite, Sprout Social and Tagboard. Keep in mind, some offer free versions that will suffice, but others may require you to pay a monthly subscription fee.

Create a welcoming social presence: avoid implicit biases by utilizing the resources outlined in the Hubspot Guide to Inclusive Language.

Social Media Smarts: tips for new Huskies, we know that technology is part of our students' daily lives, and it`s easy to forget the impact a social media presence can have. As students reach for their dreams at NIU and after graduation, this video has tips for learning how social media can help along the way.

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