It’s December, that time of year where we spend copious hours reflecting on the past 12 months and preparing for the next 12. In this industry, it’s more important than ever to anticipate change and be prepared to either jump on trends or avoid at all costs.
Now that you know my alter egos, let’s get to the down and dirty. What is it really like working with Millennials when you’re just in Gen Z? Well, it’s not always easy. Unfortunately, your age is attached to everything you do.
We get it. When you’re recruiting prospective students, it’s difficult to break out of your comfort zone. Your college or university has a system, a protocol, or a communications cycle that’s been used for years. But it’s a new era in higher education, at least if you’re trying to understand students from Generation Z. Here are a few tips from our proprietary Student Union research to help you reach and retain the right students for you.
Ah, School Dakota: the socially aware, awe-inspiring, picture perfect candidate of a great college student. If only that were true. In reality, School Dakota has had some growing up to do too. From passing classes to talking to people who are actually my age (crazy, right?), it’s a whole different world outside the office.
Born between 1996 and 2010, the members of Generation Z have a very different mindset, thanks to the world they’ve grown up in. And because of this, they’re actually changing the world. Let’s just say they’re anything but typical.
I have a few different faces I put on (we all do, it’s okay). There’s Work Dakota, who can somehow manage his ADHD long enough to get something done in one sitting, there’s School Dakota, whose ADHD magically reappears just in time for class, and then there’s the third Dakota who’s just generally a messy combination of the two.
When we start a new engagement with a college or university, we love our initial discussions about project goals and measuring success. It’s a step full of vision and ambition, tempered with an eye toward focus and standards.
My name is Dakota Story and I’m a college student and intern writer at Ologie. Like their website says, I’m the resident member of Gen Z. What that means is, I have a lot of different views on things that happen within these walls. I’m also in a very unique place in life.
One of the most effective ways for a brand to expand its reach is to partner with another like-minded brand in a different industry. By combining their powers, these brands (and their agencies) often find incredibly creative ways to cross-promote and, in doing so, can win over new fans and create serious buzz.
Queens University of Charlotte is a small, private institution that offers a range of undergraduate, graduate, and pre-professional programs, all grounded in a liberal arts core. But despite many enviable features, the university was struggling to stand out in the region and had little reputation outside the state.
Where: APLU Strategic Communicators Conference in Seattle, Washington
When: July 16-18, 2017
Who: William Faust, Managing Partner
Presentation: Understanding Gen Z
Where: 2017 AMA Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education in Atlanta, Georgia
When: November 12-15, 2017
Who: William Faust, Managing Partner with:
- Dave Sonntag, Associate Vice President Marketing and Communications at Gonzaga University
- Tracy Vosburgh, Senior Associate Vice President at Virginia Tech
- Christie Harper, Assistant Vice President of University Communications at California Lutheran University
Presentation: Athletic Brands vs. Academic Brands panel
Where: 43rd Annual Case V conference in Chicago, Illinois
When: December 10-12, 2017
Who: Doug Edwards, Ologie senior strategist with:
- Susan Abel, Associate Vice President and Campaign Coordinator at Xavier University
- Peter Owendoff, Assistant Vice President University Relations at Xavier University
Presentation: Market to Audience Mindset, Not Demographics