Andrew D.’s Interview with Rebekah Humphries

Our last (but not least!) graduate student interview of this semester comes from Andrew. It’s an interview with Rebekah Humphries, who had (though not any longer? I’m not sure about that) a major role in the Kiwanis of Michigan, and she helped set up that group’s social media presence. Here’s a link to that interview.

Just like before, go read that interview and then post your comments and questions here.

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32 Responses to Andrew D.’s Interview with Rebekah Humphries

  1. Marianne says:

    Once again, you had a great person to interview, Andrew. Your questions were just what I would have wanted to know and her answers gave good details. Since my Semester of Social Media project was doing social media for a small business, I was interested in what she said about the amount of time it takes to do social media stuff per month.

    I realized that the one thing I didn’t do that I should have was use a social media scheduling program like HootSuite to schedule tweets and posts. That would help to get original posts out to more people and have more impact.

    I was very surprised that she said the Twitter engagement was only from tweeting the posts they do on Facebook. I would have thought they would want to interact more with people.
    Great job, and thanks for the valuable information.

    • aderengo says:

      I also thought that was surprising about Twitter. In the end its all about who they are directing their posts to and the type of information that they are looking for. Perhaps their Twitter followers are looking for the same things that their Facebook followers are.

    • andrew says:

      I wonder if the social media an organization uses depends on the preferences of the person running it? Familiarity and proficiency most likely plays a significant role in how much someone engages with a certain platform. This may be the case especially if the organization does not make a request.

      I’m glad you enjoyed the interview.

  2. ZoeBelle says:

    Andrew,

    I thought you did a great job with this interview. You asked some great, valuable questions. I enjoyed how you focus not only on how Kiwanis used social media, but also how they adjusted their use in order to engage with more people.
    I wish Rebekah would have given you more information regarding your last question. I felt like some follow-up questions would have been very helpful there. Anything to invoke some specific examples in her answer.

    Overall, great job! I really enjoyed reading.

  3. aderengo says:

    I thought this was a great interview. I think it’s interesting that you did the interview on Google Docs. While it’s similar to an email interview in the sense that you are typing everything, were you guys on at the same time? If so what was it like conducting the interview like that?

    One thing that surprised me was that on average it would take 10 hours a month to do the social media posts. Personally I thought it would have been a higher number.

    What really is inspiring is the fact that the company went from having no social media to having a successful social media campaign. Nowadays you don’t really hear about companies that don’t have social media and then succeeding at it when they do start using them.

    • Joan Kwaske says:

      I had the same thoughts about the interview. I’ve never heard of anyone conducting an interview that way, but it does seem highly practical. Most people, especially writers, are better able to communicate through typing. Not to mention it gives them the ability to edit and clarify. But wondered the same questions: Were all of the questions written before? Were any written after she answered previous ones? Was there a time set or just a date?
      Anyway, the concept itself seems like an excellent one. I may use the technique in the future!

      • andrew says:

        I wanted to use Google Docs so that follow up questions would be easier to communicate. I gave her a list of questions to start, but I felt that she gave me very thorough answers and did not see a need for follow ups.

        I’m not sure if I would have requested a Google Docs interview with someone who I was less familiar with. I know Rebekah fairly well so was comfortable asking for correspondence through Google Docs.

        I also had this grand notion that if we wanted to, and everyone agreed, I could give everyone access to the Google Doc to ask their own follow up questions. I figured that might be overwhelming for someone, but the option is kind of cool.

        • Steve Krause says:

          I’m not against that idea, Andrew. I don’t want to make a ton more work for people for all kinds of obvious reasons, but if people are interested and Rebekah is game for it, maybe that could work out?

    • Steve Krause says:

      I had some similar questions. Seems like an interesting way to go about it for sure!

    • andrew says:

      10 hours a month does seem kind of light. I suppose that may be an indication that it is not a full time job and more of a desired and practical skill that could be offered.

  4. Jaclyn Y says:

    This interview was another extremely interesting one! I am starting to sense a pattern in a lot of these answers about social media. It seems that everyone who runs a social media profile for a business extensively plans everything they post. Well, maybe not everything, but a vast majority of it seems to be planned out ahead of time.

    I also give this person a ton of respect for rebuilding an entire website, it sounded like, by herself. I had a hard enough time designing my 3-page website for the text-to-hypertext project. This website is a lot more complicated than that.

    Great job!!

    • andrew says:

      Yes, the 100 hours to complete this project sounds daunting. I would love to get the opportunity to overhaul a website by applying the concepts we have learned in class and other rhetorical moves. I really want to continue to develop my coding skills so I can get opportunities like this.

  5. Joan Kwaske says:

    I really enjoyed reading this interview! I was in Key Club myself during high school, and I remember how outdated the website was. Her 100 hours of work absolutely paid off: it looks fantastic! Even though the online presence of the organization may seem like a small detail, especially given that she knows there aren’t that many people reading everything posted, it is important to stay updated for the modern audience. From my experience, the club had a difficult time finding people at first because there was little to nothing about the club on the school’s website or otherwise. Currently, they’ve been able to draw in more members by the Facebook and Twitter postings. It’s neat to read how it all started!
    Overall, this interview went into great depth. I feel I have a much better understanding of how the Kiwanis International social media sites are operated, and really, the details she talked about solidified the concepts we’ve discussed in this class!

    • andrew says:

      That’s really cool that you have experience in Key club! I’m glad that you had a personal connection to the interview and were able to offer an insider’s perspective. I will let Rebekah know that someone recognized the hard work she put into the website and social media.

  6. ReneeG says:

    Nice job! This was another interesting interview to read.

    I like how it mentioned planning what is posted on social media. This is something that we definitely do at my job. It is rare that we post something that isn’t planned, and we often create the post a couple days in advance and then schedule it to be posted at another date. A lot more thought goes into it than what some people think!

    I felt that you asked really good questions, and it was really interesting to me that you conducted this interview using Google Docs. That is something that I would never have thought of using.

    Again, nice job!

    • andrew says:

      Yeah it sounds like she plans scheduled posts several weeks in advance. I like this option since it allows for a planned social media campaign and still leaves room for specialized posts when needed.

  7. Debra says:

    Rebekah seems like an amazing person and it was interesting to learn about building social media from the ground up for an established organization. It seems like she went about it in a very organized way, which I’m sure contributed to the success of the rollout.

    At first the 10 hours a month estimate for social media that she mentioned seemed hard to believe. But I assume it didn’t include the time spent to develop or identify content. That part of social media is what most people don’t realize will take a lot of time.

    I loved the themes for the days of the week — Membership Monday, Giving Tuesday, etc. I could see that drawing viewers back in regularly if they love a certain day or look forward to the variety.

    I think your questions were very good and followed a logical order. Your question about advice revealed a good tip — to focus on one element, do it well, and then move on to the next platform.

    • andrew says:

      Yeah I bet there is a little more time involved in those 10 hours with identifying content. Though maybe not. I guess it depends on what kind of content is being pushed. If it is original content that they are developing perhaps that should be taken into account with the time spent. But if other people are doing that and one person is in charge of scheduling the posts, social media could take as little as 10 hours per month.

  8. LouiseWrites says:

    You chose great questions that really engaged with the core topics of this class. It’s also pretty amazing that you share a church with someone so seasoned in your field!

    I’m not surprised that she had 100 hours of work put in to turn the website around, and it’s impressive that she did that all on her own. The Michigan Kiwanis must be so thankful to have her.

    I wasn’t surprised at the comment that Twitter is used mainly to push their original posts on Facebook because I see this with most newspapers that tweet a short line and then place “read more of the story here” underneath it.

    Job well done!

    • andrew says:

      Yeah, I am wondering if Twitter gets used more when they have events. I would thing Twitter would allow up to the minute updates when there is an event going on. Though if someone is not in charge of this, and the audience is not there prior, I suppose there would not be much use for Twitter other than linking to Facebook.

  9. jmoss9 says:

    Another great interview with well thought out and in depth questions. I particularly liked the final question and appreciated her answer. It reiterates a familar concept and applies to job searching as well as a host of other scenarios. Defining focus and developing short term and long term goals is sound advice for almost any problem. As the semester winds down and my stress level ramps up I am going to follow this gem of advice to get me through the next 2 weeks.

    Well done. I’m impressed with the efforts of all the grad students in class.

  10. Scott says:

    This was an interesting interview and choice of person to interview. I also think that doing an interview through Google Docs was a unique way to conduct it. I kind of wish I would have though of that for my interview. It can allow you to keep a record and possibly in real time.

    It seemed strange to me that the website was turned over to the Executive Director after she was finished redoing the website. I’m not sure if this is typical. It would seem to me that it would be important for her to maintain it so it wouldn’t go awry. Maybe it’s just me. I understand the value of having an outside person refashion a website, but it seems someone involved in Kawinis like Rebekah would be a good fit to keep it going.

    • andrew says:

      I know that it would be difficult to hand over a project that one spent so much time developing. Especially since they may make changes that don’t make sense. I get the sense that Rebekah is busy with a lot more and might have been happy to hand the website over. This is also something to think about if ever designing for a client. I know some services offer continued tech support for a fee, but others do the design than hand it over.

  11. totallykyle94 says:

    I thought this was a great interview, and choosing to talk with a coworker for your project was a good route to take for this because I am sure this helped you choose good, thoughtful questions to ask. When Rebekah talked about the Youtube and Instagram accounts not having much activity, I was not surprised, but I wonder if these sites can be used effectively by companies, organizations, etc. It also makes sense to me that the Kiwanis club’s followers are so receptive to Twitter and Facebook, as those are two of the most popular social media platforms. This was very informative, nice work Andrew!

    • andrew says:

      I’m not sure about Instagram, but I would figure that YouTube would be effective as long as the video quality was good. Videos for the sake of videos would likely not be very beneficial. But if someone hired a person who was skilled in video production I would think it could be beneficial to marketing.

  12. rachel says:

    One of my favorite questions of this interview was the one asking how much time Humphreys put into managing the social media for the Kiwanis. When it comes to something like promoting through social media, it’s not always easy to quantify in our minds exactly how many hours such an activity might translate into. This interview question in particular really helps to bring this aspect out of the abstract and give us some numbers to toss around.

    Humphreys advice to obtain a focus on one element and succeed at it before expanding also seemed to be very good advice, since there are a million little things to maintain with social media that could serve to distract if there wasn’t a decided focus and plan of action from the beginning.

    • andrew says:

      I agree that a solid estimate of time is helpful. As I was developing the hypertext website for this class, I wondered how much time was too much time, at least in terms of how an employer would see it. If we had all the time in the world to work on these projects we could offer a great product. But if we take all the time in the world we wouldn’t be getting paid properly.

  13. haniam1315 says:

    I really like reading this interview. Right from the beginning, you got my interest when you said you conducted the interview through Google Docs. It was one of those “I can’t believe I didn’t think of that earlier” moments. Given that, I think reading through the interview felt a little different than reading the others, and I realized how much it helps to know the method in which an interview was conducted to be able to fully feel it.

    The questions all flowed very well, and the information received from each answer helped to set up the next question. I liked that you picked something different, and someone you could have a good conversation with about it. Aside from a few grammar points here and there, I think this interview was conducted and organized very well. Great job!

  14. Marianne says:

    I noticed a bunch of people were interested in the social media plans and calendars and stuff. I uploaded a bunch of those things to Google Drive to share with you. Some are articles, some are templates. I haven’t used most of them but they all seemed pretty useful.
    The link to the folder is https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B5nxcrrI7UVsdzdIR0MxNE90MXc?usp=sharing

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