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Ohio State Board of Trustees discuss marketing changes, tactics

The Board of Trustees met Thursday and discussed relevant marketing campaigns to target students and donors. Credit: Ris Twigg | Assistant Photo Editor

The Ohio State Board of Trustees Advancement Committee discussed modern marketing tactics to “enhance reputation” and “drive choice of the Ohio State University” on Thursday at the Longaberger Alumni House.

The Board discussed ways to engage with Ohio State’s target audience — especially alumni, students and prospective students. This includes knowing its audience’s needs and behaviors, the ability to connect through multiple social media channels and creating appealing experiences through multimedia.

At the meeting, Adrienne Nazon, Ohio State’s vice president of marketing and chief marketing officer, said technological advancements have created a demand for modern techniques in marketing.

“Technology has not just changed everything in our lives as we see it today and as we live them today, but has also changed the world of marketing significantly,” Nazon said.

Nazon said mass media methods, like billboards and ads, no longer reach enough people and that one-on-one interaction creates compelling experiences.

The meeting focused on using social media outlets — such as Twitter — as a tool to directly speak with the university’s audience.

Nazon also discussed the depth to which the university uses Google analytics. The data tracker is used by about 80 percent of Ohio State websites to provide insight into beneficial marketing strategies.

However, Nazon said being able to use both traditional and modern marketing techniques is integral in making appealing content to everyone in Ohio State’s target areas.

“None of this means we will not use any traditional media or should not be. It depends on the audience and what we’re trying to accomplish with them,” Nazon said. “But one way is no longer an option and all of it needs to work together to create a cohesive one-brand experience.”

After doing research on the Alumni Magazine audience, Nazon found that having a tangible print was favored over a web version by readers.

Nazon said after the research, 93 percent of readers rated the magazine “good” or “excellent,” which is up from 84 percent from the previous year. Readership from ages 22 to 44 has increased by 20 percent.

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