Office of Marketing

Marketing Blog

Mar 27, 2017

In the early summer of 2016, the Board of Trustees announced the start of a presidential search process to select Wright State University's 7th president. By mid-summer, the Search and Screening Advisory Committee (S-SAC) was established and a search firm had been selected to increase our candidate pool and provide confidentiality during the national search. 

Objective

Screen shot of search website

The Office of Marketing and the Office of Communications both had staff selected to support the S-SAC. An S-SAC subcommittee focused on marketing was organized and worked closely with our teams. Our objectives were to create public-facing materials to attract potential candidates and to communicate as transparently as possible to the entire university community throughout the search process. This resulted in three significant products; a website, a search profile document, and a video.

Website

The presidential search website was the primary method of communication to a broad range of audiences, both external and internal to the university. It was decided early on that the primary audience focus would transition throughout the phases of the project based on the current activities of the committee. During the preparation phase (Phase 1) of the search, an initial website was launched that focused on communicating the processes and timeline to largely internal audiences. During the learning phase (Phase 2), the site advertised a series of internal and public events that were hosted to help gather requirements and attributes for the search profile. During the search phase (Phase 3), the site transitioned focus toward prospective candidates as we worked closely with our search firm to advertise the position nationwide. Finally, during the selection and onboarding phase (Phase 4) of the search, the site shifted back to focusing on communications with internal and external audiences. As part of the process of ensuring transparency, all communications that were sent through emails to internal audiences were archived in the news sections of the site. We plan to leave the site live as an archive of the process for some time to come.

Search Profile

The written profile is an integral component of a presidential search process. This document introduces the university to prospective candidates and highlights the opportunities here that might entice them to apply. The marketing subgroup started their work on the presidential search profile immediately. We developed an outline and then gathered previously existing materials that could be adapted to make up the majority of the search profile while the full S-SAC committee worked on finalizing the content for the Leadership Agenda and Qualifications, Experience, and Leadership Attributes sections. Once we had everything written, edited, and approved, the copy was laid out with photos and graphics to make it cohesive and visually appealing.

Video

At the first meeting of the S-SAC marketing subcommittee, we suggested doing something unique beyond the search profile and website most universities develop. With Wright State's recent challenges we wanted to make sure we clearly conveyed the incredible opportunity Wright State offered to potential candidates. We shot several interviews using a range of both long-standing and newer employees to discuss the potential they see in Wright State. The video was edited together with existing b-roll and placed on the presidential search website.

Advertising

To provide the largest possible and most diverse pool, we worked closely with our search firm we to advertise in the following publications.

  • Chronicle of Higher Education
  • Hispanic Outlook
  • Journal of Blacks in Higher Education
  • Women in Higher Education
  • American Conference of Academic Deans
  • Diverse Jobs
  • Inside Higher Education
  • Higher Ed Jobs
  • Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences
  • Higher Education Resource Services (HERS)

Results

A total of 61 applications were received by the December 5th deadline. The S-SAC was pleased with the size of the candidate pool, the quality of candidates, and the diversity of those who applied. The candidate pool included current sitting presidents, chancellors, deans, chief academic officers, university vice presidents, professors, and business leaders. Most candidates were external, but we also received several applications from within our university. In addition, most applicants possessed doctoral degrees, but we also attracted candidates with medical degrees, law degrees, master's degrees, and some with multiple advanced degrees. At least one candidate was a Rhodes Scholar, several international candidates had applied, as had several with experience in research universities, and the diversity of our pool according to gender, nationality, race, experience, and background was impressive. It was an excellent pool and highly competitive. 

Of these candidates, three were invited to campus for a series of open forums with stakeholder groups. On March 6th, Wright State University named Cheryl B Schrader as our president-designate.

Mar 23, 2017

The College of Education and Human Services website was migrated into our Drupal content management system (CMS) in 2014. Since that time, the Office of Marketing has worked on numerous college websites and completed user experience (UX) testing with multiple different groups of both current and future students. Utilizing what we have learned, we wanted to make the College of Education and Human Services website our first full 2.0 college site since migrating the site to the CMS.

College Homepage Before

Website homepage old

College Homepage After

Screenshot of after webpage

Goals

  • Integrate everything we had learned going through all college sites when migrating them to Drupal
  • Improve user experience for future and current students
  • Lead conversion
  • Align site with current brand standards

Screenshot of mobile webpage
New page on mobile device

Plan

User experience testing for different sets of users has had lead us to use quite different information architecture and navigation than when we built this college website in 2014. It was necessary to update to the latest standards while also aligning with a greater focus on mobile navigation and content layout. The new pages would be much more streamlined and flow better on smaller devices. To make this signifigant of a change, we ended up rebuilding and reflowing all content pages across the whole site. Though it was more work, this would also allow us to review content more closely than is normally possible.

Results

The resulting site is closely aligned with the most recent Wright State University top-level pages and homepage. The new college homepage—much like the university homepage—focuses on telling the success stories of the institution by integrating alumni, student, staff, and faculty profiles, targeted news stories, and social media. Though making all new pages for content was additional work it allowed us to create a much higher level of polish than would have been possible through a minor facelift. We will be executing the same technique as we work on the rest of the 2.0 college websites. Making all new pages came with their own challenges. We will be paying closer attention to user permissions and redirects when using this model in the future. We also learned we should take more screenshots of the existing sites before we roll new for documentation uses, like this blog post.

Mar 22, 2017

The RaiderConnect website is an integral part of the process for incoming student and current students enrollment services. RaiderConnect is a one-stop resource for student registration, bill payment, and financial aid. With such a large portion of our campus using this website on a regular basis, it is imperative we continue to iterate and improve the site for all target audiences. 

RaiderConnect Homepage Before

Raider Connect Homepage Old

RaiderConnect Homepage After

Raider Connect Homepage New

Goals

  • Improve user experience for future and current students
  • Align site with current brand standards
  • Refine mobile experience
  • Improve accessibility standards

Plan

With the assistance of the Enrollment Management Division, we have been gathering feedback using a few different User Experience (UX) techniques over the last year. For the RaiderConnect site, we used a technique called "card sorting" to help improve our information architecture on the site. Card sorting is a technique that allows the user to sort data into different groupings or create their own new groupings. This data is then used to improve the navigation and content organization of the site.

Accounts and Bills Before

Screenshot of before webpage

Accounts and Bills After

Screenshot of after webpage

Results

217 future Raiders who visited campus participated in a card sorting exercise which resulted in many changes from the previous version of the site. Based on this data, a change to the navigation updates Classes and Grades on the previous site into two new terms Registration and Grades and Transcripts. The navigation item named Deadlines was changed to Academic Calendar to help highlight this highly sought-after content. Many other changes to information architecture and content were based off the data provided by the card sort. The resulting page is more user-friendly and much cleaner in appearance, especially on mobile.

Deadlines Before

Screenshot of before webpage

Deadlines After

Screenshot of after webpage

Mar 14, 2017

U.S. News & World Report ranked the Wright State University-Miami Valley College of Nursing and Health program No. 115 out of 142 programs that were ranked. There are 532 accredited nursing schools with master’s or doctoral programs in the nation. Wright State’s program was ranked higher than those at Gonzaga University, Kent State University and Ohio University.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Mar 07, 2017

The Wright State University—Miami Valley College of Nursing and Health ranked among the best RN programs in Ohio by RegisteredNursing.org—No. 17 among 84 colleges and universities and higher than Case Western, Kent State and the University of Akron. The rankings were based on the percentage of graduates who passed the National Council Licensure Examination, designed to determine if they are ready to practice as entry-level nurses.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Feb 21, 2017

The Office of Marketing has conducted three photo shoots this academic year for the Pioneers of Potential campaign. You may recognize them as the students wearing bowler hats, although we have photos of these students without bowler hats as well. We wanted to share those photos with the following colleges, who may use them for their purposes. We also have video available for a limited number of students.

  • College of Engineering and Computer Science (CECS)
  • College of Education and Human Services (CEHS)
  • College of Liberal Arts (COLA)
  • College of Nursing and Health (CONH)
  • College of Science and Mathematics (COSM)
  • Raj Soin College of Business (RSCOB)

The students’ colleges, majors, and photo locations have been entered onto a spreadsheet, arranged by colleges. If you would like a copy of this spreadsheet, just email andrew.call@wright.edu and our office will be pleased to share that with you.

View one of the galleries in SmugMug.

Order the photos and video. Digital images are $5 each.

Jan 10, 2017

U.S. News & World Report ranked the Wright State University Raj Soin College of Business’ online Master of Information Systems and Master in Logistics and Supply Chain Management 63rd among the 139 schools responding to the survey, naming it one of the “Best Online Programs — Graduate Business.”

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Jan 10, 2017

U.S. News & World Report ranked Wright State’s online Master of Education program, offered by the College of Education and Human Services, 43rd among the 275 schools responding to the survey, naming it among “Best Online Programs — Graduate Education.”

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Jan 10, 2017

U.S. News & World Report ranked Wright State’s Master of Industrial and Human Factors Engineering No. 56 among its 94 best online graduate engineering programs in 2017.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Dec 07, 2016

Wright State University was named to the 2015 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the university’s support of volunteering, student community service, service learning and civic engagement.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Nov 10, 2016

Victory Media, the parent company of G.I. Jobs magazine, has named Wright State University military friendly again. It is the eighth consecutive year the university has earned the designation.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Nov 07, 2016

Military Times has named Wright State University to its Best for Vets: Colleges 2017 rankings. It is latest in a series of accolades and designations for Wright State that have praised how the university serves veteran and military students and their connected families.

Source: Wright State Newsroom

Oct 27, 2016

In Fall 2016, Wright State University began a search for its next president. The Office of Marketing produced a video targeted to leaders in higher education who may not be aware of Wright State University and who may be interested in applying for the president’s position. It features students, faculty, and staff discussing why they love Wright State and why someone would want to work here. Our staff filmed and edited the interviews and integrated b-roll filmed by an external partner. The video appears on the Presidential Search webpage and may be sent to prospective candidates.

Oct 27, 2016

The Office of Marketing wrote the script, provided graphics, and worked with Channels 14/16 ThinkTV to develop this promotional spot for the College of Liberal Arts Musical Theatre Initiative.

Oct 27, 2016

We adapted our Pioneers of Potential marketing campaign to produce these staff individual videos and a group video for the President’s Awards for Excellence.

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