RAQ – What is a SMUGgle?

Even though we don’t have our own sports teams (which helps us keep tuition down!), Social Media University Global still needs a nickname for our student body. Referring to the whole bunch as “SMUG students” has an unfortunate connotation, but until a few weeks ago it was the best I could do.

Then, in a comment on this post, Jim Streed suggested “SMUGgles” as the collective shorthand designation. For those who haven’t read the Harry Potter books, it’s a take-off on J.K. Rowling’s name for ordinary mortals, Muggles: those who lack magical powers.

And while “muggles” is sometimes used pejoratively by Harry’s peers, SMUGgles is a label we should all wear proudly. It reinforces one of the founding principles of our institution:

You don’t have to be a wizard to get magical results with these powerful tools.

Everything you see here is accomplished through free or ridiculously inexpensive services like YouTube, Facebook, Flickr and WordPress.com, and with no professional IT support. And with SMUG you can work through the learning process step by step, until you feel confident using these tools in your organization.

But having chosen SMUGgle as our “team name,” that still left us with one problem. We all can picture a Cardinal, or a Blue Jay, or a Viking, but what does a SMUGgle look like? What could be our school mascot?

For now, we’re going with something that bears an eerie resemblance to the “I just joined Facebook” avatar that represents all of us on that social networking platform until we upload a picture. Somehow that seems appropriate, because it shows that SMUG is not only open to newbs, it’s intended for beginners.

But with that, I also want to renew the call for those, newb or not, who have artistic abilities and would like to design a new masthead and logo for SMUG. It would be great to have an official seal that incorporates our Latin motto, Suus Non Ut Diffucile, and if we could get an original drawing for the SMUGgle mascot, that would be fantastic, too.

If the Obama campaign can have an official seal complete with a Latin motto, why not SMUG? To borrow a phrase, “Yes, we can!

I promise that once we select a SMUG seal, we’ll use it a lot longer than Obama did.

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Chancellor RAQ: Creating Facebook Pages

This is the start of a new occasional feature at SMUG, in which we’ll answer publicly some of the questions that are sent via e-mail. I thought about calling these FAQs, but a question doesn’t need to be asked frequently to be worth sharing the answer publicly. It could be that others just haven’t thought to inquire. So we’re creating a category for them called Recently Asked Questions (Chancellor RAQs).

This first question actually does fit the the frequency criterion, too, since I’ve had it a couple of times in the last week:

Q. How do I create a “fan page” for my organization in Facebook? Do I first need to create a group? I can’t find anywhere on the Facebook site where it gives any instructions and apparently I’m not quite cool or hip enough (yet!) to figure it out intuitively!!

A. You’re right: not about your lack of coolness or hipness, but about the relative obscurity of the method for creating a new Fan page for your brand. If you look at the bottom of any Facebook page, you’ll see an “Advertisers” link. When you click that, you will learn not only about Facebook’s advertising options, but also will see, on the right side, a description of Facebook Pages (along with a button you can click to create a new page.) Or if you want to take a shortcut, just click here.

This assumes you already have set up your own personal profile in Facebook. Someone has to be the administrator for the Fan page, so you can’t create a page until you have an individual profile.

This leads to a follow-up:

Q. I want to set up a page for my volunteer organization. Shouldn’t I just set up a separate profile for the organization (instead of a Page), so that when I rotate off the board someone else can take over? I don’t want to be forever connected to this Page through my Facebook account.

A. No. Individual profiles are for real people. Pages are for brands and organizations. Once you have created your organization’s Fan page, you can add others as administrators; for example, we have two administrators for the Mayo Clinic page. Be careful when adding administrators, though, because anyone who has admin rights can do everything with a page that you can, up to and including deleting the page. But when you leave the organization, you can just have yourself removed as an administrator for the page.

In a future post, I will go through the steps of creating a Facebook page as part of the Facebook curriculum. For now, hopefully the answers to these RAQs can help SMUGgles get started.

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