The Media and Social Media unit communicates to internal and external audiences about university programmes, research and the activities of faculties and staff. Working closely with UCT’s executive management, we release news and information through both traditional and social media.
Media queries, statements and reports
Media queries handled increased by 20.8% in 2020 as compared with the previous year, while media statements released were the highest in the last five years, doubling in number when compared with 2019 and far exceeding the number of media statements released during the 2016–2017 #RhodesMustFall and #FeesMustFall periods – a difference of 38.2%.
Compared with the year before, the number of Vice-Chancellor (VC) Desks increased by over 50%, while the number of Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC) Desks issued was three times more (considering that what was previously the fourth DVC portfolio has now become a COO portfolio). When including the COO Desks, the total number of DVC Desks issued was almost the same number as the combined total for the preceding four years.
In Remembrance notices
An unusually high number of In Remembrance notices (notices that communicate the passing of staff and students) was issued as the university also felt the very real impact of COVID-19, notably over the December festive period. This understandably impacted members of the team within the unit, and support in handling the high volume was sought from colleagues from other CMD units.
VC content support
Due to increased virtual events, the number of speech briefs / talking points was the highest in the past three years. This total is not a reflection of all virtual events that the VC herself was part of (for some events, no talking points or draft speeches were required).
The report format for the above was modified in the third quarter of 2020 (some sections therefore do not include statistics from the preceding years).
The number of inboxed Facebook queries tripled when compared with 2019. In a single year, the team handled more queries than they did in the preceding three years combined. This is because more of our users are online. This accelerated during the pandemic.
Messages posted on Facebook reached almost twice the audience size compared with the year before. LinkedIn has been increasingly used as an additional platform, with the number of posts more than doubling in 2020. The number of YouTube views increased by almost 50% compared with 2019.
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UCT’s Communication and Marketing Department has five business units that have contributed to its success during 2020.