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Higher Ed profile: @BradJWard

21 July 2009

@BradJWard is [half] the man [he has a co-founder @fjgaylor] behind, a consulting biz dedicated to providing higher ed institutions with tools and strategies to effectively utilize web-based tools for admissions, marketing, yielding and more.

(1) WHY this site?

Because he writes in language that’s easy to understand and writes about things that higher education folks need to hear. Don’t let the fact that he represents a consulting business deter you from the great bits of information he shares related to branding, marketing and the like within higher education.

(2) Screen shot


If his profile photo says anything about him, I’d love to work with him. Goofy photo and nutrition-like facts show that she’s creative and isn’t afraid to bring humor to the conversation.  A combination of bio and random personality insights, his personal photo/background image gives a clear snapshot of who and what you’re working with.

(3) Data on tweets

From Tweetstats
Most tweets: Between 9am-3pm
Tweet Timeline: 18.2  tweets/day (tpd)
Interface used: Web or Tweetdeck

From TwitterCounter
Data from April-July 2009

Followership: 1743 to 2515
Friends: 587 to 652
Average growth per day: 8

(4) “Fill In The Blank” stats

Date data downloaded : July 19, 2009
Industry sector : Education


Twitter ID : @bradjward
Followers : 2494
Following : 647
Ratio followers/following : 3.85  followers : 1 friend

Number posts : 10449
Account created : ?
First post : ?

Co-founder of @BlueFuego. Love higher ed and the social web. I blog, I present, I think big. Here’s what others say about me: Clear buzz words about what his interests are: higher ed, social web. If folks want to know more, they can hear it from others who have worked/work with Brad.

Bio link
Org Blog
Org website home
Personal Site

Definitely savvy in the marketing and branding game. He says that he  loves higher ed and the social web in  his bio, and that seems to show in his conversations, RTs and information he shares. He gets that higher ed needs to jump in the social media scene or we’ll get left behind. I’m impressed that he’s a 20+ year old who not only has a passion for linking social media and higher education but who is proactively seeking networks and strategies that higher ed orgs and individuals can use to leverage their work.

(5) Analysis

A. General
(A.1) Background: aside from the side bar with the avatar, the background is the standard twitter blue. This is OK, since everything you need to know about how to contact him is with the avatar.

(A.2) Avatar: the side bar with Brad’s photo and contact info is eye catching. Definitely not boring.

(A.3) Bio: lists that he’s a co-founder of @BlueFuego. Including the twitter handle drives people to the company’s info.  He also includes a link to “what others say about me.” He personalizes the url so it’s easy to remember: Even smarter.

(A.4) Transparency : Because this is his personal blog, he isn’t tweeting for the company here [they have their own Twitter account]. It is, however that he is affiliated with BlueFuego and does tweet information related to the work he does with the company.

(A.5) Bio Link: the link in his bio leads to his blog on higher education and social media. This is clearly separates his own thoughts from that of his consulting/strategizing business,BlueFuego.

B. Tweets
(B.1) @s: 113–Has a LOT of conversations.
(B.2) ReTweets: 25
(B.3) DM requests: 0. The only mention of DMs was to thank people for the Direct Messages that certainly brightened [his] day on the tarmac J 10:18AM, July 14th from Tweetdeck
(B.4) Hashtags: 27—mostly #highered and #eduweb.
(B.5) Favorite Tweet:

Disneyland is no more th an 200 yards from where I’ve sat working on a computer for the last 2 hours. Time to get up and get some fresh air. 6:41 PM July 13th from TweetDeck

C. Questions/Suggestions
(C.1) Questions unearthed during analysis

  • In what ways do you communicate with your followers or the people you @ outside of twitter?
  • Where do you get the bulk of  information you tweet?
  • Who are some higher ed+social media folks you recommend to follow?

(C.2) Suggestions for improvement

  • The personal site– looks like it focuses on higher education recruitment and social media. Perhaps include the recruitment piece on your twitter bio, since it’s searchable? Perhaps more higher education groups will be able to find your resources.

D. Analytic Services (to come next week)

E. Conclusion
@BradJWard knows what he’s doing. He has regular conversations with followers, provides tidbits of information, responds to requests and offers people who contact him. The conversations seem to be generically higher education. If there was a specific interest or focus within higher ed, it’s not completely apparent. Much of the conversation has been around analytics and profiles of higher education and social media–he’s currently at a conference, and before that was prepping for it, so I didn’t find anything outstanding, but in looking back past the 100 tweets, I find more higher education-related tweets and links, mostly related to admission and higher education marketing.

One Comment leave one →
  1. 23 July 2009 5:48 am

    Wow, very cool! Thanks for taking the time to dissect me. :)

    Some fill in the blanks for you: Account created and first tweet on June 17, 2007.
    Total DM’s: 4,550

    I’ve also noticed that Twitterholic will usually give you a much longer view at follower/following growth than TwitterCounter:

    And some quick answers to your unearthed questions:
    * In what ways do you communicate with your followers or the people you @ outside of twitter?
    Lots and lots of DM’s. For every 2 tweets, I send a DM as well. I take a lot of conversations off Twitter to email. A lot of face-to-face interaction occurs due to my traveling for BlueFuego. I frequently have lunch/dinner with people who follow me whenever I am in their area. It’s not unusual for me to see 3-5 of my followers a week.

    * Where do you get the bulk of information you tweet?
    Most of it is just from my mind. I try not to be a RT/Link type of person on Twitter. That’s how I started, and people seem to like it, so I figured I’d keep it that way. I share the occasional link, but only if it helps a conversation or I tihnk others will enjoy it. I try to be cognizant of my follower base. If someone in higher ed posts a story and two other people I follow RT it, what value is there to my followers if I do the same? For the most part, there is a lot of reciprocation in followers across the higher ed crowd, so I’d just be sending them all the same link they already got three times.

    (Example – Zappos purchased by Amazon. Who didn’t see that 20 times yesterday? No need for me to retweet it.)

    * Who are some higher ed+social media folks you recommend to follow?

    Take a look at, good list of people to follow on there!

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