Brand fragmentation is a consistent theme we see in our industry and client research. There are lots of reasons for this, but mainly the folx charged with “managing the brand” are thinking about “the flagship.” When you embrace the adage that “brands aren’t what you say they are, they’re what they [your audience] says they are,” the fragmentation is obvious.
Brain Waves Blog
“Starting social media accounts is the puppy adoption of higher ed” is a Darron Bunt quote that we repeat often. Does your campus have hundreds of campus accounts creating confusion for your audience? Research shows that your prospective and admitted students often turn to Instagram to get an insider’s view on campus life. If their search terms return a handful of inactive accounts before the official, well-managed accounts, it impacts their perception of your campus.
Your campus is working to tell a cohesive, compelling brand story, but if you’re not working with a collaborative shared strategy, your message is being drowned out by conversation from accounts managed within departments, colleges and units, research centers, and other disparate areas of campus telling a different story in a different way in hopes of meeting very different goals. Let’s count the ways your brand is fragmented.
Ongoing social listening analysis allows you to better understand your baseline conversation and create personal benchmarks, track seasonal changes, evaluate the effects of crises, and measure the impact of new campaigns.
Disclaimer: The title of this article isn’t a slight to Liz’s SXSW presentation proposal. As a matter of fact, our stances are similar and I wholeheartedly believe every single current and future higher ed pro across the entire country needs that presentation.
At best, the “demographic cliff” is an oversimplified, incomplete, and misleading phrase for the very real and inevitable demographic shift happening in the United States. The world is not ending; this isn’t going to deplete the value of higher education; and even if there are less “traditional college students,” there will still be humans who need and want postsecondary education. Those folx are just going to look different; come from different backgrounds; have different needs and experiences; and be different people than they have been historically. Despite those whose fear is attempting to stop or slow it down, the make-up of this country is changing and that’s not a bad thing.
If you work on a small campus, chances are you’re a master at multitasking. Depending on the size of your campus, social media may be the responsibility of one person, or less than one, so it’s important to get the most out of everything you do. If that’s where you sit right now, we can help.