It’s not surprising that 72% of college presidents agree or somewhat agree that their institution needs to make fundamental changes in its business models, programming, or other operations (Inside Higher Ed’s 2023 survey of presidents).
Brain Waves Blog
Our 2024 kicked off with a trip to sunny Florida for the Council of Independent Colleges Presidents Institute. The conversations and sessions covered the toughest current topics, such as endowments, cost of attendance, artificial intelligence, and others, giving us renewed appreciation for the hardest job in higher ed.
Attendees navigated issues and solutions critical for campus leaders this coming year. Although the focus was on independent colleges, the issues and trends affect every institution in some form. We’re sharing four challenges that will shape the 2024 higher ed landscape.
“We report quarterly, but no one really gives feedback.” “Our information goes into an annual board report, and we’re not sure if anyone even reads it.” “We work hard, but don’t always feel seen.” “We have a new leader coming in and want to position our team’s value effectively.” We hear comments like these all the time, and campus communicators are genuinely concerned their efforts are lost in the sea of competing priorities.
Higher ed marketing isn’t synonymous with pushing boundaries, but some CMOs are trying to change that. We sat down with Jenny Petty, University of Montana, and Gabriel Welsch, Duquesne University, to pick their brains on the importance of boundary pushing in higher ed marketing.
As presidential digital leadership evolves, marketing leaders and their teams are more likely to support an executive social media presence. Even if you haven’t done this in the past, presidents change, and each change in leadership brings with it a change in social media presence. Being a leader on social media without a strategic focus is risky, and every executive should have a thoughtful approach to their online presence. Marketing leaders can help guide and mold the presidential approach to social media.
It wasn’t entirely unexpected, but the anger arose faster and more intensely than anticipated when I referred to prospective students as customers in a conversation about recruitment.