While costly to produce, the printed Alumni Magazine may be worth the investment. Geile/Leon and Stakeholder Insights co-authored this blog post to review the reasons to preserve the college and university alumni magazine as a 3-D communications product and reflect on cost-effective alternatives. https://geileon.com/blog/god-save-the-zine-are-alumni-magazines-a-thing-of-the-past/
(1) Reinforce brand awareness to strengthen brand connections. This can support enrollment marketing, boost volunteer recruitment and increase internship creation at alumni employers
(2) Update alumni on how their alma mater is remaining relevant today with stories about curriculum innovation, internship and study abroad opportunities as well as awards and call outs of notable accomplishments by current students and alumni
(3) Deliver annual giving reminders and serve as a recognition vehicle for donors at all levels
(4) Encourage recent graduates’ financial support and plant the seeds for bigger gifts and bequests in the future
Can these benefits be delivered through a more cost-effective vehicle and/or process?
Consider asking your alumni what most matters to them in terms of alma mater news content and format. Most alumni are not professional graphic designers or content specialists, but they do know what they most like to learn about, why they want to stay connected to you, what activities reinforce their desire to stay connected and how they want to digest this information.
Designing communications market research involves thinking about:
- Alumni segments (defined by date of graduation, major or professional school, where they live now, level of annual giving support now, etc.)
- Alumni contact information (for what percentage do you have email addresses? Do the rest need to be sampled by phone or mail? Would local or multi-city focus groups over breakfast or lunch help assess sentiments?)
- Alternative design formats and communication vehicles to preview that you might consider in place of the current magazine
Interested in discussing the present and future of your marketing communications? Ready to gain some valuable insight from your alumni? We’ve got the experience and the research you need – give us a call or drop us an email.