Thursday, 7 August 2014

What is #mychesterstory?

I recently wrote some blogs discussing the importance and value of student referrals for enabling prospective students to gain an authentic view of the real student experience at Chester. It's these student experiences that enable our prospects to identify with the University in such a way that it allows them to envisage what it is really like to live and study at Chester. And it's our students' stories that help tell the story of our brand and consequently differentiate what we have to offer.

It was with this in mind that my digital marketing friends (Shai Vure; Sarah Markillie) and I recently set about thinking about how we can harbour all the great feedback we frequently get via our social media networks at the same time as encouraging more of our prospects, students and alumni to share their experiences with us. With some deliberation with the wider marketing team, including Deputy Director, Ric Bengree, a new social media hashtag was born: #mychesterstory

So with the concept now conceived, what will happen next? Well, you might have already noticed that the hashtag was featured in our latest student recruitment video, recorded with these very objectives in mind. The next step now is to target those momentous university events, in particular Freshers' Week and our Graduation ceremonies, where our students are more than likely going to be proudly sharing their experiences via their social networks. And, in the 175th anniversary of the University, it's a campaign that can also be stretched out to our network of alumni contacts, enabling graduates from years gone by to reflect on their memories at Chester.

However, this campaign isn't just about harnessing all these great experiences under one umbrella. It's also a means for allowing these stakeholders to engage with the University community, something we value very highly in MRA in order to help us attract and convert our applicants into enrolled students at the University of Chester.

By including #mychesterstory postcards in the Induction Pack, sent out to all our freshers in advance of Induction Week, we are hoping that these students will start to engage with this concept right from day one. Of course, we don't yet know what these students will be sharing with us, but whatever it is, it will be a piece of content that genuinely reflects the Chester student experience.

Until the next communication,


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