KU seeks new marketing strategy

By Taylor Delehanty

As KU enrollment continues to decline in the 2015-16 academic year, the University Relations team is trying to change local residents’ unfamiliarity with the university.

John Green, associate vice president of communications, marketing and external affairs, is ready to take action in order to

John Green in his office | Photo courtesy of University Relations

John Green in his office
| Photo courtesy of University Relations

reach as many people as possible to tell KU’s story and increase enrollment.

He said, “Our new marketing process is still in the works. We currently have 30 potential companies that want to do the university’s image research.” He also added that 10 of these companies are among the best in the country.

The current plan, which Green has been working on with KU President Kenneth Hawkinson, is an intricate process requiring an esteemed team of marketers to answer one simple question: “Why Kutztown University?”

In order to properly market and ultimately “sell” the idea of attending KU, students, staff and faculty have to be able to answer this question and know what aspects of the university to promote to arouse interest in prospective KU students.

Once a company is chosen, its marketing experts will come to campus and ask students, staff and faculty what made them choose KU.

The company’s research is not confined to campus. Their marketers will also travel outside the university and question alumni, high school students, parents and anyone interested in enrolling in higher education what they look for while choosing a school.

After this period of research is finished, which is expected to take approximately five months, the chosen marketing company will return to campus during the Spring 2016 semester to report its findings.

With these results, the marketing department will devise a new marketing plan and work closely with an ad agency to launch a new campaign. Green noted that the majority of this new marketing will be found in an online setting, as students spend most of their time on the Web and various social media forums. The budget for this campaign is said to come from a state operations fund.

“There is a small pool of people that want to attend a four-year school. We need to be aggressive to get them here,” Green said. With 40 years of experience in the field, Green is confident that this new campaign will attract new students and put KU on the map.



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