Volume 6 (2021-22)

Volume 6 of Journal of Education Advancement & Marketing consists of four 100-page issues. Articles scheduled for Volume 6 are available to view on the 'Forthcoming content' page.

Articles published in Volume 6 include:

Volume 6 Number 3 (Winter 2021-22)

  • Editorial
    Simon Beckett, Publisher
  • Case studies:
    Endowment reporting: Reducing time, staff and budget while enhancing quality, quantity and donor satisfaction
    Micah Hyle, Assistant Director of Stewardship and Data and Rachel Smith, Donor Relations Coordinator, University of Florida Advancement

    In 2017 the University of Florida (UF) launched an ambitious US$3bn fundraising campaign with US$1bn allocated to growing UF’s endowment. Anticipating an influx of new endowment funds, the UF Donor Relations team needed to develop a more sustainable and efficient annual endowment reporting process that would maintain the quality of the reports without increasing time and staffing resources devoted to this effort. To meet this challenge, UF Donor Relations implemented infrastructure changes and built a customised reporting portal that cut the required personnel for report compilation from 24 individuals to 3, implemented a tiered system for donors that resulted in a higher report completion rate from campus partners, and invested time in educating fund administrators on the importance of stewardship and storytelling. Through this case study, readers will learn what steps UF Donor Relations took in order to complete this vision and how to apply these practices to their own reporting processes.
    Keywords: donor relations, endowment, technology trends, reporting, advancement services, donor database, stewardship

  • Updating your stewardship and donor relations strategy: Determining a strategy that works for an organisation of any size
    Juliette Kesterson, Director of Donor Relations, The University of Tennessee

    This paper focuses on the University of Tennessee’s stewardship and donor relations strategy and how University of Tennessee (UT) creates unique donor stewardship through creative events, technology, segmenting stewardship and elevating personal touches. The examples included can be adapted for the needs of any size organisation.
    Keywords: donor relations, stewardship, donor engagement, strategy, partnerships

  • Reimagining research promotion: How to maintain visibility and momentum through an integrated approach
    Molly Gluck, Assistant Director of Public Relations, Boston University

    This case study provides an overview of how to effectively leverage social media, content platforms, media relations and creative visual assets to educate the public and key influencers about faculty expertise and cutting-edge research. This paper will outline how higher education institutions can utilise multimedia across multiple channels, owned and earned content, audience segmentation, strategic cadence and evergreen assets to shape, spread and sustain messaging for an overarching topic. The case study will detail fundamentals for successful implementation of each component in the comprehensive campaign. Each specific strategy outlined in this case study has been successfully applied to a wide portfolio of thought leadership and research promotion initiatives for different subject matter areas and faculty members across a major private research university. The reader will be equipped with tools and tactics for developing a dynamic, integrated amplification approach that achieves immediate results and long-term success.
    Keywords: higher education, research, thought leadership, integrated promotion, social media, multimedia

  • Retention marketing: Higher education’s new frontier
    Andrew McDaniel, Associate Director, and Jenn Vaughn, Senior Brand Manager, Student Affairs Marketing and Communications, UC Davis

    The higher education landscape is changing: 75 per cent of Generation Z say that college is not the only way to get a good education. The 2008 birth dearth has shrunk our pool of 18-year-olds by 15 per cent. National Association for College Admission Counseling’s (NACAC’s) ethic code changes mean colleges can poach our students like never before — and that was all before COVID-19. In this new frontier, retention marketing is paramount. This paper provides insights and approaches to retention marketing that will fit a wide range of audience needs, including case studies from our work at UC Davis Student Affairs Marketing and Communications as it relates to retention and our research into Gen Z.
    Keywords: retention, marketing, Generation Z, communications

  • Practice papers
    Great storytelling: Best practices for advancement
    Kate McDowell, Associate Professor, School of Information Sciences and Deborah Miller, Assistant Director of Clinical Partnerships, Interdisciplinary Health Sciences Institute, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign

    Storytelling is a key strategy for establishing and sustaining relationships with donors, current and prospective. The purpose of this paper is to explore connections to the century-long public library storytelling in the field of Library and Information Science (LIS) and identify best practices for advancement work. Analysis of 20 interviews with advancement professionals — part of a larger Storytelling at Work project of over 100 interviews — reveals advancement best practices related to library storytelling. Interviewees include advancement professionals at all stages of their career development, from new hires to seasoned leaders. Findings demonstrate that storytelling can inform every stage of the advancement process — including gathering narratives, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship — so that development officers become inspiring tellers of tales. This paper provides a framework to support new advancement professionals to be more strategic in their storytelling and, at the same time, provoke seasoned professionals to analyse how they weave storied relationships.
    Keywords: storytelling, advancement, libraries, donor, listening, relationship, connection

  • Neurodesign: An emerging design discipline that can be used to boost the performance of enrolment and fundraising marketing communications
    Deborah Kohl, Professor and Program Director of the D.S. in Information and Interaction Design, Division of Science, Information Arts, and Technologies, The University of Baltimore and Andrés Zapata, EVP of Strategy, idfive

    The emerging field of neurodesign employs fundamental knowledge about human brain function to enhance the effectiveness of interface design. This information can be applied to websites and other marketing materials to capture donor and prospective student attention to drive action. Some basics of brain function are described, and specific creative directions stemming from the knowledge of brain–behaviour relationships with respect to attention, working memory and emotional reactivity are offered.
    Keywords: neurodesign, conversion rate optimisation (CRO), design, recruitment, fund-raising

  • Two birds with one programme: How business schools can support their entrepreneurial stakeholders and generate new revenue
    John A. Sims, Jr,President and CEO, AJS Consulting and Roy A. Wiggins, III, Trustee Professor of Finance, Department of Finance, Bentley University

    This paper examines how US colleges and universities currently support their entrepreneurial stakeholders and proposes an advisory initiative that extends these services in a way that benefits all involved. First, some of the most common support mechanisms provided by these schools to their entrepreneurial stakeholders are detailed. This discussion helps identify an important process that can be added to an already full menu of support that schools provide. Secondly, that process is presented to help schools determine how best to extend the variety of school resources to their school stakeholders engaged in various stages of running business ventures. The ultimate goal is to offer intermediate, advisory opportunities that fall between using independent mentors and coaches and a more formal board of directors. The firms get access to expert advice and counsel. Advisory board candidates have a new way to connect with the school and make meaningful contributions to both the venture and the school. The institution possibly receives a small equity stake in the firm that could bring some needed relief to school’s financial needs. Finally, this process fills an important gap in the services schools can provide their entrepreneurial stakeholders.
    Keywords: advisery, alumni relations, corporate relations, entrepreneurship, university advancement

Volume 6 Number 2 (Autumn/Fall 2021)

  • Editorial
    Simon Beckett, Publisher
  • Case studies:
    What’s next for real-time COVID-19-era marketing?
    Toni Angelo, Director of Marketing, Office of Strategic Partnerships and Workforce Development and Katie Umberger, Strategic Marketing Specialist, Office of Strategic Partnerships and Workforce Development, Northern Virginia Community College, Dana Cruikshank, Director of Strategic Partnerships, VisionPoint Marketing and Steve Partridge, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships and Workforce Innovation at the Office of Strategic Partnerships and Workforce Development, Northern Virginia Community College

    COVID-19 took a heavy toll in the world of higher education and higher education marketing. This paper outlines how Northern Virginia Community College and VisionPoint Marketing tackled the issue of declining summer 2020 enrollment head-on as the pandemic hit the United States and turned the problem on its head in the span of just three weeks. The campaign’s remarkable success serves as a guidepost on what to do in times of crisis in the world of higher education.
    Keywords: COVID-19, enrollment marketing, higher education marketing, marketing campaign, pandemic, crisis marketing

  • What does good engagement and communication with your major gift prospect community look like in the COVID-19 era? Ask your donors
    Mary Haworth, Director of the Office of Philanthropic Partnerships and Alumni, University of York

    This paper will share findings from a piece of research undertaken by the advancement team at the University of York (UoY) into the needs, interests and concerns of its donor community in the context of the global pandemic. This research helped to shape the ways in which the university’s advancement team and senior leadership colleagues continued to fundraise for UoY’s first institutional campaign. Although particularised to UoY, the paper focuses on two key transferable points: those of the importance of gathering insights from your donor community during a time of great challenge and uncertainty and how gathering around a virtual table is not as limiting as we might have anticipated. The paper aims to share some of the learnings from the research undertaken by the advancement team and to encourage advancement professionals to put your donor community at the heart of your case for support. It will provide insights into how colleagues at UoY have continued to engage, cultivate and steward their donor community despite the challenges posed to fundraising for higher education.
    Keywords: digital engagement, donor insights, major donor fundraising

  • Reporting on donor intent to impact campus spending
    Liz Adler, Data Manager for Gift Services and Shannon McBratney, Director of Gift Compliance, University of Colorado Foundation

    Have you ever found a US$20 bill in your pocket or wallet that you did not know was there? This is the feeling we are hoping to give our campus partners with our new Fund Purpose Report. Being at a large, decentralised university creates many challenges, one of them is how we get everyone on the same page in regard to how gift funds can be spent. This is the question we set out to answer four years ago. Our quest to solve this problem led us to an audit of every single gift fund we have, about 7,000 in total, and the creation of a dynamic report that is now being used across all four of our campuses, greatly impacting our campus spending. In this paper you will read about how we collected our data, how we added this data to our systems in a strategic way and how we transformed this data into a dynamic report.
    Keywords: institutionally related foundation, gift fund, reporting, gift compliance, donor intent, spending

  • Building a data management system
    Alison Kubala, Data Specialist and Kelly Travis, Director of Records and Gifts, University of Central Florida

    The University of Central Florida Foundation (UCFF) will serve as a case study for this paper as it describes the steps necessary to create, implement and maintain a comprehensive data programme. Several key building blocks are needed such as setting goals, evaluating resources, garnering leadership support and documenting data standards. In-depth detail is provided on how to create a comprehensive data calendar to track incoming data and data audits. Information is also shared on creating a successful Data Governance Committee structure. Building internal and external relationships is key to data enrichment and the paper will discuss how to select the right vendor. A programme cannot be built overnight, but by using these steps, the framework can be created for long-term maintenance and growth.
    Keywords: data management, data audit, data enrichment, data governance, vendor selection

  • The opportunities and challenges of moving to a virtual events programme during a global pandemic
    Janne Whaley, Alumni and Parent Relations Manager, Dulwich College

    The impact of a global pandemic on alumni events programmes through 2020 and 2021 has been astounding, with physical events cancelled or postponed. Alumni professionals have had to embrace the virtual, moving programmes online and opening up alumni activities to a global audience. This paper offers insight into how an independent school has adapted to the challenges and embraced the opportunities. We offer thoughts on how we will look to take this learning forward into developing a post COVID-19 programme.
    Keywords: alumni engagement, alumni relations, events programme, virtual events

  • Practice papers:
    A process for developing effective gift documentation: Considerations in working with donors and gift officers
    Debbie Meyers, Assistant Vice President for Advancement Operations, Chautauqua Institution

    Gift documentation often requires a special blend of talents: negotiating skills, legal acumen and a bit of clairvoyance. The author of a gift agreement has to balance the mission of the institution with the donor’s wishes — two variables that do not always align. Drafting a solid gift agreement also requires a good working knowledge of what an organisation can do within the letter of the law, against a backdrop of a legal landscape that changes almost daily. And finally, an effective gift agreement has to take into account what the future holds for the terms of the agreement, particularly for endowed funds that are meant to last forever. Documenting a gift sets the foundation for an organisation’s relationship with its donors. An effective gift agreement clearly outlines the donor’s intent, managing expectations and setting the terms of the gift’s administration. A badly constructed gift agreement can erode trust and irreparably damage the donor’s relationship with the organisation. In drafting gift documentation, it is crucial to get things right at the very beginning to avoid bad publicity, legal battles and disgruntled donors. This paper describes how to document funds that meet three basic but critical attributes: funds must be legal, possible and practical. This paper also looks at donors’ motivation and offers suggestions on how to guide them into creating funds that will benefit the institution and meet their philanthropic goals. It also lists elements that effective gift agreements must contain to function well.
    Keywords: Gift documentation, donor intent, legal restrictions, scholarships, fund administration

  • Diversifying donor bases for higher education institutions
    Milagro ‘Misa’ Lobato, Director of Prospect Management and Analytics, Rhode Island School of Design, Kristal Enter, Assistant Director of Prospect Management and Research, Massachusetts General Hospital and Kimberly Walz, Senior Director of Advancement, Prospect Development at the University of Central Florida Foundation

    In 2020, institutions of higher education grappled with a new urgency around addressing diversity and inclusion on their campuses as the US processed the murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, and the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted profound inequities both on campus and off. Much of this work has focused on diversity of the student and faculty populations, as well as the content of curriculum. In this paper, we argue that addressing the diversification of the donor base to these institutions is just as critical and urgent, though has perhaps not been as central a focus as other aspects of diversity on campus. This paper will touch on the biased systems and fundraising infrastructure that have perpetuated the cultivation of homogenous groups of donors to colleges and universities. We will also provide potential next steps available to colleges and universities that would support the diversification of a donor base. This includes collecting demographic information about donors, building cultural competence among fundraisers and developing quantitative measures around this work.
    Keywords: diversity, equity, inclusion, alumni engagement, donor pipeline, fundraising data, bias

  • Building relationships with audience-centric communications
    Allison Turcio, Director of Enrollment Marketing and Digital Strategy, Siena College

    Colleges are not just competing with each other for prospective students’ attention, they are competing with Netflix, Snapchat, TikTok, funny memes and all the brands they already love. Audience-centric communication is the way to stand out, build relationships and become a brand that matters. This paper discusses how to focus your mind-set on the audience first, as well as better understand and connect with them. If you are already doing this, this paper will remind you why and reinspire (and maybe even level-up!) your audience centricity. If you are not, the examples shared from higher ed and beyond will help you to get started. It is worth the effort — Siena College found that students who received personal, one-to-one communication from the admissions office were 2.8 times more likely to enrol.
    Keywords: higher education, marketing, enrollment, student recruitment

Volume 6 Number 1 (Summer 2021)

  • Editorial
    Simon Beckett, Publisher
  • Case studies:
    Why students don’t read e-mail: A critical look at how university email communications guide or confuse students through the student experience, and the COVID-19 pandemic
    Jenny McMahon, Director of Marketing and Communications, Enrollment Management, New York University

    This paper examines the perception that ‘students don’t read e-mail’ through the execution and analysis of a comprehensive e-mail audit conducted by New York University’s Enrollment Management Marketing division from May 2019 through May 2020. By looking at the volume, content and quality of e-mail received from the university, we see how institutional messaging can either support or complicate the student experience. This research includes a human-processed dataset of all incoming e-mail communications received during the audit period, quantitative and qualitative analyses of the communications and focus group testimony from undergraduate students. We examine e-mail communications through both the everyday business of being a student and through high-stakes events like the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. This paper illustrates that while volume should not be dismissed as an area of concern among university communicators, the underlying practices that cause e-mail to be ignored are more complex and demand a more strategic approach to student-facing communications.
    Keywords: e-mail communications, communications strategy, student experience, content, brand management, organisational culture

  • Marketing in the time of coronavirus: Lessons learned from the University of Glasgow
    Rachel Sandison, Vice-Principal for External Relations, University of Glasgow

    This paper provides an overview of the core tenets that drive successful organisational marcomms activity in this peri-COVID-19 environment. The reader will gain an understanding of the marketing theory that underpins these responses, and why marketing and communications has a strategic role to play in driving institutional plans during a crisis. The paper also provides a case study on the specific initiatives undertaken by the University of Glasgow since the start of the pandemic, and the lessons that have been learnt. In particular, the case study focuses on the importance of brand and reputation in the delivery of responsive strategies and the significance of market orientation and innovation during times of crisis.
    Keywords: crisis communications, higher education marketing, market orientation, marketing innovation, responsive strategy, stakeholder engagement

  • Integrated editorial planning at the University of Georgia
    Jan Gleason, Executive Director for Strategic Marketing in the Division of Marketing & Communications and Greg Trevor, Executive Director of Media Communications, University of Georgia

    This paper provides a case study of how the University of Georgia Marketing & Communications office fine-tuned its processes and tools to integrate editorial and content calendars to expand the reach of content with key audiences to increase awareness. This process brought together teams from media communications and strategic marketing with a focus on the university’s messaging strategy and included a revision of workflows for asset creation and channel distribution planning and the implementation of Asana, a team collaboration and work management application. The results of the integration of efforts led to increased reach and increased team efficiency.
    Keywords: integrated marketing communications, editorial planning messaging strategy, integrated team workflows, integrated editorial planning

  • Alumni participation in an online COVID-19 course for first-year and transfer students
    Danny Kibble, Executive Director of Alumni Relations, Engagement and Parent Giving, Jennie Jones, Director of Volunteer Engagement, Office of Alumni Relations and Engagement and Anne M. Wilson, Chemistry Faculty Member, Butler University

    College and university responses to the exceptional challenges of COVID-19 have varied from institution to institution. Utilising alumni and their disciplinary expertise in the delivery of course content is an underexploited form of alumni engagement. This paper describes significant alumni participation in an online course delivered in the summer prior to new students, first years and transfers, arriving on campus. We have also included student perception of the alumni modules and alumni reflection on their involvement in the course.
    Keywords: alumni engagement, lifelong learning, alumni opportunities, online learning

  • Practice papers
    Data governance in the world of constituent relationship management
    Therese Callaghan, Associate Vice President of Information Technology, Analytics and Gift Processing, Rutgers University Foundation

    Constituent relationship management (CRM) systems are increasingly being adopted in higher education to manage the constituent experience and ultimately grow revenue and support. As institutions move from transaction-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems to constituent-based relationship management systems, there is a need for a uniform understanding of the data in a shared information environment. This, coupled with the growth of analytics and data-informed decision-making, requires a structured programme to effectively manage information and its consistent use throughout the institution. Data governance provides the discipline to nurture a common understanding of the data, its consumption and protection as an organisational asset. This paper defines basic CRM concepts, their benefits to advancement departments and more broadly across higher education institutions. Data governance is explained, in the context of individual constituents and the more complex corporate partnerships. Essential data governance tools and concepts, such as the data dictionary and master data management, are covered, including examples. Ways in which the benefits of data governance can be measured and quantified, especially when justifying a new effort, are explained. While the focus is on higher education and advancement, these concepts can be applied more broadly to any organisation.
    Keywords: data governance, data quality, CRM, advancement, MDM, master data management, engagement, corporate

  • Higher education: Using academic innovation and student engagement to differentiate your brand from the competition in challenging times
    Sheri Lambert, Assistant Professor and Academic Director MS-Market Research & Insights and Amy Lavin, Assistant Professor and Academic Director MS-Digital Innovation in Marketing, Temple University at Fox School of Business

    COVID-19 has changed the game in higher education. Universities and colleges across the globe are faced with staying true to their brand and delivering their coursework in a time when physical presence on campus is severely limited — if possible at all. There are ways to differentiate an Institution’s strategy and engage students so that they get a full college experience — even if they cannot set a physical foot in the classroom. Through this paper, educators and administrators will be introduced to three key strategies that can be employed to keep students engaged in content and perhaps even provide a more inclusive environment than the physical classroom. Threaded throughout the paper are theories on how to incorporate innovative strategies and communication channels to enhance brand messaging and build community in a largely virtual world.
    Keywords: engagement, experiential learning, global immersion, virtual classroom, communication

  • Stewarding major donors: Why is it important, and how to do it well
    Annarosa Muscatelli, Philanthropy Manager (Health), Office of the Vice-Provost (Advancement), University College London

    This paper explores the stewardship of major giving donors and provides guidance and examples for building an authentic relationship between institution and donor. In a world where our donor’s attention (and money) is constantly being fought over, the paper suggests how as fundraisers we might cut through this noise and keep donors engaged with our causes.
    Keywords: advancement, communications, development, engagement, fundraising, major gifts, stewardship

  • Research paper
    Why wait? Benchmarking student philanthropy programmes: A closer look at effective programmes and why we should act now
    Amy Harrell Holloway, Philanthropy Officer, UNICEF USA

    Student philanthropy efforts are meant to engage students while they are undergraduates and help them understand the importance of giving once they become alumni. We know that when students give as undergraduates it translates to positive giving patterns as alumni, but there is a need for in-depth study of existing student philanthropy programmes (SPPs) so that practitioners understand what makes them successful. This study explores effective student engagement programmes on college campuses by identifying 11 colleges with effective SPPs and gleaning insight into how these programmes are structured, implemented, managed and maintained. The findings suggest (a) that student philanthropy efforts be led primarily by students, with oversight from at least one full-time dedicated staff person, (b) that philanthropy education is integral to the success of these programmes and can be intertwined with asks as early as the undergraduate’s first year, and (c) that programming should be relevant with students interests.
    Keywords: alumni, alumni giving, development, engagement, student philanthropy, young alumni