Spring 2013Tuesday, 2:00-3:15pm (Lecture, ST-F 303) & 3:15-4:45pm (Lab, ST-F 107)

Hyunjin Seo, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor Office: Stauffer-Flint Hall, Room 207A E-mail:; Phone: 785-864-7612 (Office) Office Hours: Wednesday 1:30-3:30 pm, Thursday 9:30-10:30 am, and by appointment

(Document as of January 22, 2013)




Developments in information technology and online social networking have posed opportunities and challenges for those who practice and research strategic communication. What are the implications of new digital communication technologies, in particular social media, for organizations' building and managing relationships with their target audiences? How can organizations – corporate, governmental, and nonprofit – use social media to improve their image and brand?

This course explores possible answers to these and other questions related to advertising, marketing, and public relations in the networked age. In doing so, we will examine significant changes in strategic communication approaches brought about by the networked information society. We will also study effective ways for organizations to identify social technographics of key audiences, create social media content, disseminate messages, and evaluate social media-based strategic communication initiatives.

This course combines theoretical and hands-on approaches to issues. Students are expected to critically assess scholarly papers and develop informed perspectives on central issues. In conjunction with theoretical understandings of social media, students will study and use different social media applications throughout the semester. Students will work in groups to analyze, evaluate, and develop social media strategies for organizations chosen for their case study research.




-      To develop an understanding of implications of the networked information society for strategic communication

-      To learn uses of social media for strategic communication by different actors in different countries

-      To learn ways to identify and measure social technographics of an organization's key audiences

-      To learn how organizations can effectively craft and deliver their messages via social media

-      To learn research approaches that can be applied in implementing and evaluating social media-based strategic communication

-      To learn about how to build and maintain personal brand online

-      To learn about ethical issues related to social media-based strategic communication

-      To learn about diversity issues related to strategic communication

-      To improve skills for communicating research results in written and oral reports




After successful completion of this course, students are expected to be able to:


-      Understand changes in strategic communication brought about by new digital technologies

-      Understand the role of computer networking and social media in strategic communication

-      Critically analyze academic and policy papers on contemporary issues concerning strategic communication

-      Use research tools to identify and measure social technographics of an organization's key audiences

-      Understand ways to effectively craft and deliver an organization's messages to its key audiences

-      Understand how to build and maintain personal brand online

-      Understand ethical issues related to social media-based strategic communication

-      Understand diversity issues related to strategic communication

-      Effectively communicate research results in written and oral reports





All the course readings are available electronically, either on the web or on the course Blackboard site. Readings posted to the course Blackboard site (https:// are listed as [BB]. Download and read the documents specified in the course schedule before coming to each lecture. Most readings come from the following books:


Solis, B. (2012). The end of business as usual: Rewire the way you work to succeed in the consumer revolution. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Solis, B. (2010). Engage: The complete guide for brands and businesses. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Evans. D. (2008). Social media marketing: An hour a day. Wiley Publishing, Inc.

Li, C., & Bernoff, J. (2008). Groundswell: Winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Harvard Business Press.

Stern, J. (2010). Social media metrics: How to measure and optimize your marketing investments, Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Solis, B., & Breakenridge, D. (2009). Putting the public back in public relations: How social media is reinventing the aging business of PR. Pearson Education, Inc.



The University of Kansas email account ( will be used as a primary vehicle for official communications including announcements of any changes in the course schedule or assignments. Thus, it is your responsibility to regularly monitor your KUemail account. I will use the class Blackboard space to post class materials. Email is the best way to reach me out of scheduled ofce hours. It is recommended that you use your KU email account when corresponding with me, since messages sent from other servers can be interpreted as junk or spam and thus not received.


The following are graded individually:

Class attendance and participation (10%)

Your attendance and active class participation is expected. This means that you should complete assigned readings prior to class and be prepared to engage in discussion about hem (i.e., answering a discussion question, asking a question, and making an informed comment). High quality and regular class participation will be worth 10% of your course grade.


Contribution to class blog site (15%)

In this class you are expected to regularly contribute to the private class blog site. The URL for the blog site will be distributed early in the semester. This is the site for the class to exchange ideas about the topics covered throughout the semester and to collaborate in creating content about social media and strategic communication. You are required to contribute at least three blog posts reflecting on class readings and discussion and at least three responses to your classmates' posts during the semester. You can identfiy issues or problems you have with the week's readings, raise original thoughts, or pose questions you would like to discuss with the class. Your contribution should be between 150-300 words.

Twitter assignment (5%)

You are required to tweet useful information or news related to social media at least once a week during the semester (Week 2 - Week 14). When you tweet, you should use the class hashtag that will be determined at the first class meeting.

Reflective essay on personal branding (5%)

In this class we will discuss ways of improving your personal brand online and you are expected to work on your online profile across different social media platforms. Each of you will submit a short reflective essay (no more than 2 pages, double-spaced) that discusses what you have done to improve your profile online together with your brief reflections on the process. The issues you should discuss in the essays include, but are not limited to:

-      How do you define your personal brand?

-      What are the main issues and platforms you have focused on in building and maintaining your brand online?

-      What are the major challenges you encountered in building and maintaining your brand online?

-      What kinds of measures have you tried or are planning to try to address those challenges?

-      What do you plan to do to further improve your brand online?


Salesforce assignment (10%)

You will complete a small assignment related to Salesforce social media analytics/engagement platforms. Details will be announced later in the semester.

Peer evaluation (5%)

Twice during the semester, your group members will evaluate one another on the categories specified below. Your grade for this category will be determined by the median of the evaluation scores your group members assigned to you.

-      Relevant task knowledge

-      Contribution of quality ideas

-      Participation in team meetings

-      Dependability/follow-through

-      Cooperation/relationship/attitude

-      Taking initiative

-      Facilitating communication


The following are graded by group:

Client project (40%)

In order to allow us to link an abstract understanding of strategic communication to the a working organization's communications needs, students will work in small groups to develop social media strategies for an organization of their choosing. You should describe, analyze, and evaluate the organization's current use of social media for its strategic communication and then offer specific recommendations (theoretical and practical) for improving its social media-based strategic communication. Detailed guidelines and examples are posted to the course Blackboard site.

Presentation on best/worst social media practices (10%)

Once during the semester, small groups of students (same as the client project groups) will make a presentation on best and worst practices of social media campaigns in different areas. Each group should identify one best practice and one worst practice in the given area. The group should prepare a PowerPoint, Keynote, or Prezi presentation (i) summarizing their chosen social media campaigns, (ii) analyzing why and how they were successful or not successful, and (iii) discussing how they could be improved. In addition, the group should, at the start of the class, submit to the instructor a three-page document summarizing the examples (one best practice and one worst practice). Your presentation should be no more than 20 minutes plus 10 minutes for class discussion.



There is no mid-term or final exam in this class. I reserve, however, the right to have additional quizzes if it becomes apparent that readings are not being completed in a timely manner.


Guidelines for submitting written assignments

All written assignments must be double-spaced, 12 point font, with 1-1.15 inch margin on all sides. For in-text citation and bibliography, refer to the guidelines of the American Psychological Association – commonly referred to as the APA style (6th edition of Concise Rules of APA Style). You should email me your assignments before class begins on the date scheduled. Assignments are graded on grammar, spelling, and punctuation as well as on their content.

Policy on late assignments

Papers and assignments are due when indicated on the syllabus. Late assignments are penalized one letter grade. Only under extreme circumstances (e.g., documented familyor medical emergencies) will I agree to a delay in the submission of assigned material. Late assignments must be completed and turned in by the last day of the class.

Summary of assignments and evaluation









Class participation




Contribution to class blog site




Blog post 1

February 5, 11pm



Response 1

February 7, 11pm



Blog post 2

February 12, 11pm



Response 2

February 14, 11pm



Blog post 3

February 19, 11pm



Response 3

February 21, 11pm



Twitter assignment

Week 2-14



Reflective essay

March 5, 2pm



Salesforce assignment




Peer evaluations












Main client project

May 3



One-page proposal (2%)

February 5, 2pm



Organization & Situation Analysis section due (4%)

March 26, 2pm



Social Media Planning section due (4%)

April 23, 2pm



Final paper due (25%)

May 7, 2pm



Final presentation (5%)

May 7



Presentation on best practice

Course Schedule








The final grading is based on the accumulated number of points. The following scale will be used:


370-400 = A

308-319 = C+

360-369 = A-

290-307 = C

348-359 = B+

280-289 = C

­330-347 = B

270-279 = D

320-329 = B-

0-269 = F





In this class, and in all journalism classes, honesty and integrity are critical. Any work you do must be original and reflect your own ideas, thoughts, and research. In a work setting, if you choose to violate professional standards, you will be fired. In this class, if you choose to violate the standards for academic integrity, you'll fail the course, and you may be expelled from or denied admission to the School of Journalism.

Here is the journalism school's official policy statement:

"The William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications does not tolerate plagiarism, fabrication of evidence and falsification of evidence.

"In this course, the penalty for plagiarism, fabrication or falsification is a failing grade for the semester. Additional penalties can include expulsion from the School of Journalism. If you have questions about what constitutes plagiarism, fabrication or falsification, please consult the professor of this course."

The KU University Senate defines plagiarism as "knowingly presenting the work of another as one's own (i.e., without proper acknowledgment of the source). The sole exception to the requirement of acknowledging sources is when the information or ideas are common knowledge." The University defines fabrication and falsification as" unauthorized alteration or invention of any information or citation in an academic exercise." Here's some clarification:

-      If you use or attempt to use any unauthorized materials during a test, or if you give any unauthorized materials to someone else during a test, this is cheating. Unauthorized materials include written materials, such as notes. Unauthorized materials include any forms of nonverbal communication (one cough, the answer is A; two coughs, the answer is B, etc.).


-      Plagiarism is stealing. You take someone else's ideas, thoughts, or words, and you present them as your own original work. This includes taking ideas from written sources, such as books, as well as materials on the Internet. Cutting and pasting materials from the Internet and presenting that work as if it was your own is plagiarism. There may be times when you want to incorporate another person's ideas, opinions, and words into the papers you write, to make a point or to provide background. If you do, it is essential that you attribute that information—that you explain where the information came from and give credit where credit is due.


-      Fabrication and falsification mean that you made it up. This can include making upan entire interview or embellishing a fact, quote, or statistic to make it sound better. Don't do it.




The KU office of Disability Resources coordinates accommodations and services for all students who are eligible. If you have a disability for which you wish to request accommodations and have not contacted DR, please do so as soon as possible. The office is located in 22 Strong Hall; the phone number is 785-864-2620 (V/TTY).

Information about services can be found at Please also contact me privately in regard to your needs in this course.



In the event of inclement weather, the decision to cancel classes is made by KU officials. To determine whether snow or icy conditions have canceled classes, call 864-7669 (864­SNOW). The Office of Disability Resources (DR), 22 Strong Hall, 785-864-2620 (v/tty), coordinates accommodations and services for KU students with disabilities. If you have a disability for which you may request accommodation in KU classes and have not contacted DR, please do so as soon as possible. Please also contact me privately in regard to this course.




"No student may add a journalism class after the 20th day of a semester.

"Students must attend their classes and laboratory periods. Instructors may take attendance into account in assessing a student's performance and may require a certain level of attendance for passing a course. Instructors may choose to drop students from a course, based on attendance, without consent.

"The School of Journalism reserves the right to cancel the enrollment of students who fail to attend the first class or laboratory meeting."

"The KU Office of Student Financial Aid is required by federal law to determine whether students who receive aid are attending each class in which they are enrolled. Instructors are required to report to that office absences of students who have stopped attending and names of those who have enrolled but never have attended. Students who do not attend classes may be required to repay federal and/or state financial aid.

"Students who receive any form of financial aid should learn all requirements including minimum hours of enrollment and grades to qualify for and retain that aid."



Course materials prepared by the instructor, as well as content of all lectures presented by the instructor, are the instructor's property. Video and audio recording of lectures without instructor consent is prohibited. On request, the instructor usually will permit students to audio tape lectures, on the condition that these audio tapes are only used as a study aid by the individual making the recording. Unless the instructor gives explicit permission, recordings of lectures may not be modified and must not be transferred or transmitted to any other person, whether or not that individual is enrolled in the course.


*Course schedule subject to change. Any changes to due dates will be announced by e-mail via Blackboard.

Week 1 Introduction

January 22 Introduction to the Course

-      Structure of the class

-      Review syllabus

-      Discuss small assignments and client projects

-      Inventory of professional skills incorporated in the class

-      Administrative matters


Context: Networked Information Age

-      Required reading

-      Holmes, R. (2012, October 25). NASA-style mission control centers for social media are taking off. CNNMoney. Retrieved from PueEg

-      Vega, T. (2011, October 30). Advertising companies fret over a digital talent gap. The New York Times. Retrieved from

-      McKinsey Global Institute. (2012). Executive summary (pp. 1-13). In The social economy: Unlocking value and productivity through social technologies.

Social Media Tool: WordPress class blog site, Twitter & social media dashboard (HootSuite, TweetDeck, Echofon, Spredfast, etc.)

Week 2 Personal Branding/Privacy

January 29 Developing and Managing Personal Brand Online

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Doyle, A. (2011). Building your professional brand (chapter 1). In Internet your way to a new job.

-      Pan, J. (2012, August 28). Students, here's how to kick-start your personal brand online. Mashable. Retrieved from

-      Signer, N. (2012, December 8). A vault for taking charge of your online life.The New York Times. Retrieved from

-      Recommended reading

-      [BB] Beal & Strauss - Developing your personal brand

Social Media Tool: Online/video/visual/social media resume & LinkedIn


Week 3 Understanding Social Technologies

February 5 Understanding Roles of Technologies and Social Technographics

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Li & Bernoff. Groundswell. Chapters 1-3 (pp. 3-62).

-      [BB] Solis. Engage. Chapter 20 (pp. 243-267).

-      [BB] HubSpot. The marketer's guide to Salesforce.

Social Media Tool: Salesforce social media analytics/engagement platforms

*Best/Worst Practice Presentation 1: Entertainment/Sports industry

*Client assignment due: one-page proposal

Week 4 Social Media & Entrepreneurship /Developing Apps

February 12 Social media and entrepreneurship

-      Guest speaker: Sean Branagan, director of the Newhouse Center for Digital Media Entrepreneurship

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. (2010). The importance of startups in job creation and job destruction.

-      Pozin, I. (2012, March 23). The 10 best digital tools for entrepreneurs in 2012. Forbes. Retrieved from

-      Erickson, C. (2012, March 28). How to avoid the common pitfalls of mobile app development. Mashable. Retrieved from


Social Media Tool: Developing web/mobile apps (MobileDevHQ, Branded Business Apps, AppMakr, etc)

*Best/Worst Practice Presentation 2: Retailing/Food industry

Week 5 Social Media Planning

February 19 Social Media Planning

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Solis. Engage. Chapter 21 (pp. 268-280).

-      [BB] Spredfast. (2011). Social media initiative planning guide.

-      Recommended reading

-      [BB] Evans. Social media marketing. Chapters 13-14 (pp. 289-342).

Social Media Tool: Tools for creating websites and webpages (WordPress, Wix, Weebly, etc.)

*Best/Worst Practice Presentation 3: Fashion Industry

Week 6 Rules of Engagement & Ethics

February 26 New Rules of Engagement & Ethics

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Solis. End of business as usual. Chapter 7 (pp. 56-71).

-      [BB] Solis. Engage. Chapters 17-18 (pp. 181-227).

-      [BB] WOMMA Ethics Toolkit

-      Vinjamuri, D. (2011, November 3). Ethics and the five deadly sins of social media. Forbes. Retrieved from


Social Media Tool: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

*Best/Worst Practice Presentation 4: Finance/Automotive industry

Week 7 Creating Social Content & Facebook/Twitter Marketing

March 5 Creating Social Content

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Evans. Social media marketing. Chapter 10-11. (209-262).

-      [BB] HubSpot. How to master Facebook marketing in 10 days.

-      [BB] HubSpot. Learn how to attract customers with Twitter.


Social Media Tool: iFrame & Twitter API

*Best/Worst Practice Presentation 5: Health industry/NGOs

*Reßective essay on personal branding due

Week 8 Evaluation & Measurement

March 12 Evaluation & Measurement/Touchpoint Analysis

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Salesforce-Radian6 (2012). ROI of social media: Myths, truths and how to measure.

-      [BB] Salesforce-Radian6 (2012). 5 steps to effective social media measurement.

-      Evans. Social media marketing. Chapter 6 (pp. 103-125).

-      Recommended reading

-      [BB] Solis. Engage. Chapter 25 (pp. 321-345).

Social Media Tool: Google Analytics, Radian6, Crimson Hexagon, & YouTube Insight

Week 9 Spring Break

March 19 No class


Week 10 Identifying Influencers

March 26 Identifying Influencers

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Solis. End of business as usual. Chapter 9 (pp. 83-99).

-      [BB] Solis. Engage. Chapter 19 (pp. 228-240).

-      Recommended reading

-      [BB] Aral & Walker. (2012). Identifying influential and susceptible members of social networks. Science.

Social Media Tool: Social bookmarking

*Client assignment due: Organization & Situation Analysis section

Week 11 Content Marketing & Social Media Gaming

April 2 Content Marketing

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Eloqua. (2012). ROI of content marketing.

-      [BB] Taylor, L. (2010, August 12).Why social media gaming is big business for your business. Social Media Examiner. Retrieved from rhq2c


Social Media Tool: & Storify

Week 12 Social Media & International Communication

April 9 Social Media in Public Diplomacy and Global Activism

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Lichtenstein, J. (2010, July 12). Digital diplomacy. The New York Times. Retrieved from

-      [BB] Morozov, E. (2010, February 20). The digital dictatorship. The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved from

-      [BB] Fitzpatrick, A. (2012, January 14). How nations can be united with social media. Mashable. Retrieved from


-      Recommended reading

-      [BB] Smith (2010). Socially distributing public relations: Twitter, Haiti, and interactivity in social media. Public Relations Review 36, 329-335.

Social Media Tool: Instagram, Pinterest & geolocation applications Social Media Around the World: Global Web Index


Week 13 Social Media in Health Communication

April 16 Social Media in Health Communication

-      Required reading

-      Mills, M. (2012, May 12). Tricorder update -- Social medicine is the next big thing after social media. Forbes. Retrieved from

-      [BB] Fox, S, & Jones, S. (2009). The social life of health information. Pew Internet & American Life Project.

-      [BB] Hawn, C. (2009). Take two asprin and tweet me in the morning: how twitter, facebook, and other social media are reshaping health care. Health Affairs, 28(2), 361-368.

-      [BB] Lefebvre, C. (2009). Integrating cell phones and mobile technologies into public health practice: a social marketing perspective. Health Promotion and Practice, 10(4), 490-494.


Social Media Tool: Data visualization tools

Week 14 Social Media in Crisis Communication

April 23 Social Media in Crisis Communication

-      Required reading

-      [BB] Holtz, S, & Havens, J. C. (2009). The Toothpaste is out of the YouTube: Addressing loss of control with transparent tactics.

-      [BB] Beal & Strauss. You don't own your company's reputation


Social Media Tool: Network analysis

*Client assignment due: Social Media Planning section

Week 15 Group Consultations

April 30 Group Consultations

Week 16 Client Project Presentations

May 7 Client project presentations

*Final paper due on May 7: Email me an electronic copy of your final paper before class begins (before 11 am) and submit a hardcopy of thefinal report as class begins.