When it comes to making the decision about where to attend college, high school seniors are influenced by many factors, including,but not limited to: campus life, athletics, financial aid, and the college’s reputation. Students often feel the pressure of selecting a “good” college not only from their families and friends, but also from society as a whole. Unfortunately, there are sometimes negative perceptions associated with choosing community colleges, as if students at these colleges miss out on campus life or college athletics.
To combat these misperceptions, Monroe Community College (MCC) in Rochester, N.Y., enlisted the help of Martino Flynn to develop a series of brochures to educate and inform prospective students and parents about the college’s campus life, athletics, and financial services, among other offerings. Martino Flynn also worked with MCC to develop a direct mailer to drive these prospective students and their parents to the Fall Open House.
In order to effectively communicate with its target audience members, MCC needed to understand what makes them tick. Martino Flynn conducted online surveys and focus groups to find out what factors were most important to students when it came to selecting a college. These key findings created a roadmap for Martino Flynn to follow for developing the strategies of the project, including: messaging for collateral, creative elements, and event details for the Fall Open House.
The series of brochures developed could stand alone, or be integrated with MCC’s viewbook and other recruitment materials. A template that contained photographs of MCC students was implemented to ensure consistency in look, feel, and tone throughout the series. Each brochure also included titles that would allow for easy identification when displayed in a brochure rack.
With MCC’s direct mailer, it was essential to design a piece that could cut through the clutter of the target audience’s mailbox, as many area colleges were hosting open house events around the same time as MCC’s Fall Open House. Instead of a traditional envelope in which to mail the open house invitation, Martino Flynn utilized a clear poly bag that showcased the design and allowed for photographs of MCC’s students to show through.
Evaluations of both of the campaign elements found that the brochure and direct mailer were very successful in improving overall perception of MCC and driving students and parents to the Fall Open House. The positive feedback from the target audience, the response rate, and our research and strategy were factors in the judges’ decision to award our work for MCC with 2012 PRism Awards.