Communications and Marketing

Anibal House
630 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(location map)
(248) 370-3184
fax: (248) 370-3182


  • Always maintain administrator rights to your accounts, even if handing responsibilities to a student or temporary employee. 
  • All university policies apply on social media accounts representing OU (including privacy and codes of conduct). 

If you have any questions regarding social media policies and best practices, please contact UCM at

Social Media

By incorporating social media as part of an overall communication plan, we can more effectively tell the stories about OU people, places and programs while supporting the university’s mission. Social media can be a very powerful marketing tool, when used appropriately. Read on to ensure maximum effectiveness.

Policy and
As a staff or faculty member who has been charged with the exciting task of growing a social media presence for a department or organization within OU, please use these guidelines as you navigate the quickly evolving world of social media.
  1. Read the full social media policy and meet with your account manager to determine the best approach for your department or group's social media presence, strategy and goals. At this time, your account manager will have official social media icons and profile graphics created for your account(s).
  2. Create your 12-month content calendar and strategy document(s). These plans should consider the budget required to carry out any contests and promotions as well as creation of any videos or other media, promoted posts, etc.
  3. Request designation as an OU-affiliated social media accounts by completing this form. Accounts will be listed on the social media directory at once it is determined that minimum requirements outlined in the social media policy are met.
Creating and maintaining departmental accounts is not always the most effective approach. Talk to your account manager about achieving your goals by having your messages posted directly via the University's official accounts. We are eager to have departments and faculty c ontribute directly to OU’s main social media accounts by sharing expertise, links to research and community involvement, classroom/lab activities, and more. 
Social Media Icons (Profile photos)

All approved OU-affiliated social accounts should use a profile photo/icon designed by UCM. The icons follow specific guidelines to maintain the OU brand while providing a unique visual identity on social media. 

  • Schools/Colleges: black background, gold OU monogram, white text (excluding 'school of/college of', abbreviations may be used in substitute)
  • Secondary units (programs, departments): gold background, slightly smaller OU monogram, light gold lettering for the unit name (font size can vary for emphasis or aesthetics)
    • A single photo may be screened out in the background only if it is specific to the account (no stock art or general OU photography). When a photo is used, the text for the unit name becomes white.
Social media icons bearing the OU monogram and unit name can not be used for any other purpose than as a profile photo on a social networking site. 

Graphics for cover photos and social posts
When promoting events and major campaigns, chances are a graphic package will be needed for print, Web, digital displays on campus, and social media. Let your account manager know that social media is part of the marketing plan so coordinating graphics can be created for various platforms. 

Use strong photos whenever possible, and think front-page-news worthy images. When necessary, graphically-designed images may be used, but text should be minimal (20% of the image or less). 
Social Media
Known Truths

UCM's social media team manages Oakland University's main accounts, maintains social media guidelines, and provides social media consultation for the campus community. 

With planning and daily coddling, we have seen incredible growth and success in just the last two years in our ability to engage alumni, the community, prospective and current students with social media. 

While it's ever-evolving, especially in the world of higher education, there are some known truths that we've found in our experience and research:

  • Not every department should have its own social media properties. There are often more effective ways of reaching your target audience than building up a social following from scratch.
  • Content needs to be engaging and "shareable" to reach any significant amount of people to make the resource expenditure to gather that content worthwhile.
  • Content needs to be original pertain to the specific account's area of expertise in order to demonstrate a value add for the student to connect with those accounts.
  • A written social media strategy guides your 12-month communication plan outlining key events and messages, giving you ample time to plan.
  • Faculty and staff should be encouraged to contribute by submitting content to a single point of contact for the department's social media efforts.
  • Have a trusted team of quick thinkers and problem solvers at the helm of your social accounts.
  • All content should fulfill a strategic goal or objective for the University or department. If it's going to look bad on the 5 o'clock news, don't post it.
  • Tools like Hootsuite help you seek out and join relevant conversations and operate as a team
  • Social media changes every single day so you need to keep learning and adapting to stay relevant. Subscribe to sites like Mashable and Social Media Today. Join social media groups on Linked In for webinars and white papers.