In today’s social media age, there’s power in numbers and this media company was able to leverage its social capital to increase HBCUs’ presence on Instagram’s platform.
Watch The Yard — an online media company revolutionizing the Black college experience — reported that they set a goal earlier this year to grow HCBUs social media presence after they published their own research revealing only four were verified, including Spelman College, Morehouse College, Jackson State University, and Saint Philips College.
According to Watch the Yard, despite many HBCUs being esteemed institutions, having vibrant campus cultures, and dedicated alumni bases, only 4 percent were verified across Instagram compared to PWIs who have a much higher verification rate.
The same week their research was published, Watch The Yard’s founder Jonathan Rabb held a talk at YARDCON to stress the importance of pushing platforms like Instagram to verify HBCUs.
Following this, Facebook then partnered with the United Negro College Fund and Thurgood Marshall College Fund to host a digital celebration for HBCU graduates for their official 2020 Digital Graduation Commencement Weekend.
Additionally, they partnered up with All Def Digital and All Def CEO, Cedric Rogers, who suggested they reach out to Watch The Yard to expand their reach to HBCU students.
In an effort to help increased student recruitment, fundraising, and legacy building efforts in an increasingly online-first digital era, Watch The Yard negotiated a deal within their newly-founded partnership to secure verification for 71 HBCUs total.
“I’m extremely proud that Watch The Yard’s was able to secure verification for 72 HBCUs on the biggest social platform for young people today,” Rabb said. ”I’m proud of this being a part of my legacy and am committed to leveraging Watch The Yard’s influence for the continued advancement of HBCUs across the country. Our Black institutions matter.”
For more information on Watch The Yard, visit their website.