Time for a digital reformation?

“Why we need a 21st-century Martin Luther to challenge the church of tech,” by John Naughton (image: The Guardian).

This Tuesday, Oct. 31, marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s publication of his 95 Theses, an action that sparked the Protestant Reformation. To commemorate that event, and in hope of igniting a different type of reformation, Guardian columnist John Naughton plans to post his own 95 theses. Continue reading “Time for a digital reformation?”

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‘Bite Size Horror’: a frighteningly successful ad campaign

Screen capture from “Floor 9.5,” one of Mars’ scary short films for Halloween.

Pop over to the Skittles website, and you’ll find all the happy, colorful “taste the rainbow” imagery you’d expect from this candy brand. Viewers of some Fox network programming, however, recently saw a different, darker side of Skittles: a two-minute commercial in the form of a haunting horror flick.

Continue reading “‘Bite Size Horror’: a frighteningly successful ad campaign”

#highered’s perception problem

Let’s take a deeper dive into one of the findings from that Inside Higher Ed survey of admissions officers that I blogged about last week. The finding has to do with what Inside Higher Ed called our sector’s “image problems,” which I prefer to think of as problems of public perception.* Continue reading “#highered’s perception problem”

The end of #highered as a public good

Students take their seats for the diploma ceremony at the John F. Kennedy School of Government during the 361st Commencement Exercises at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts May 24, 2012. REUTERS/Brian Snyder

Nearly a decade has passed since the start of the Great Recession, and higher education has yet to fully recover. Continue reading “The end of #highered as a public good”

Moving away from interruption #marketing

It’s time for brands to get back to “creating the thing” instead of “the thing that interrupts the thing,” writes Andrew Essex in “The End of Advertising.”

When I was a kid in the ’60s, one of my favorite television shows was Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom. It was a wonderful, weekly view of wild animals and their wilderness habitats, narrated by zoologist Marlin Perkins and aided by his fearless sidekick Jim Fowler. The program introduced me to all manner of wild animals and environs while subtly embedding in my brain messages about conservation and respect for all living creatures (even though Perkins and Fowler often resorted to tranquilizer darts to take down and sedate various creatures for study and tagging). Continue reading “Moving away from interruption #marketing”

What does Level 5 Leadership look like in #highered marketing?

One of the many intriguing sessions I attended during last month’s CASE Summit for Leaders in Advancement was a session titled “Lessons from Advancement’s Level 5 Leaders.” Presented by Daniel P. Saftig, senior consultant and principal at Marts&Lundy, the talk focused on leaders in fundraising so it wasn’t really in my bailiwick. (To the chagrin of communicators, marketers and alumni relations people, fundraising is still what many people, even in the business, think of when they hear the word advancement.) But Saftig’s big question — “What does Level 5 Leadership look like in fundraising?” — intrigued me enough that I’ve been thinking about a similar question: Continue reading “What does Level 5 Leadership look like in #highered marketing?”