A Secret Weapon for Universities

How a good DAM service can give a leg-up to colleges and universities.

We in Pics.io absolutely love talking to our users. It shows us a lot of insights into the way how people actually use Pics.io and gives us ideas as to how we can improve our service.

Recently we got curious to learn more about our registered users who are educational institutions. So we decided to approach them and to learn first-hand what brought them to Pics.io in the first place.

Our small survey rewarded us with some interesting revelations and exciting stories our users shared with us. One of them was a great story of success from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN.

Well, first things first.

Concordia College is a private liberal arts college with a diverse community of 2,000 students. Last year they launched a comprehensive promotional campaign RISE with an ambitious goal to raise as much as $150m in donations. This money was supposed to to finance virtually everything from student scholarships to the construction of new buildings.

Needless to say that with such an ambitious goal in mind, RISE had to be a powerful large-scale campaign with a gala event, a website, and a whole set of high-quality marketing collateral, including this high-budget video:

Emotional video made by Concordia College, MN, appealed to the hearts of quite a few donors.

Their effort was duly rewarded. RISE proved to be a tremendous success. $130m out of the expected $150m has been collected so far, and it is still bringing in donations.

The campaign also raised general public awareness of Concordia College in the area. The video above even won two regional advertising awards!

It’s high time you asked me what on earth a DAM service has to do with all this?

Well, the thing is that RISE was a brand new campaign, so the Office of Communications and Marketing in Concordia College had to produce all assets from scratch to support it. That included a logo, graphics, posters, wording, brochures, postcards, mailers, packets, video, website… you name it.

Most of those materials were made in-house. You could easily imagine the enormous number of assets the Concordia team had to process to get the job done.

It’s very doubtful that could have achieved all this within a short timeline of 6 months, if they hadn’t had a DAM system at their service.

This is how Evan Balko, Content Specialist in Concordia College, comments on that,

“We do all our own photography in-house, to maintain low-cost, high-quality, & quick turnaround. And with three designers, plus writers and social media specialists, everyone needs access to photos, and those photos need to be organized, tagged, and labeled so they can be searched. Without a well-setup DAM, we couldn’t produce the quality and quantity of work that we do, because so much time would be spent trying to find photos instead of designing brochures or other assets.

He also adds the following,

Our designers, developers, and writers can find photos quickly without having to constantly ask the photographers to find photos for them, which frees up the photographers to spend more time shooting and editing and not serving up photos. Plus, a good DAM system with a solid backup means our assets are safe, and downtime is minimal.

It’s not that we’ve been trying to jump onto the bandwagon of other people’s success :-) But still, it’s so rewarding to hear these words of appreciation for a DAM service. Because this is exactly the reason why we’ve been developing Pics.io since 2012.

In fact, if you give it a little thought, you can’t but feel sorry for marketing teams that work for colleges and universities. Just think of all those crowds of people who are part of huge and dynamic “beehives” known as universities.

Tenure teachers and visiting professors, undergraduate and post-graduate students, non-academic staff and athletic teams, donors and alumni, media and local communities… With so many stakeholders on the plate, it is quite challenging to build a 360-degree communication with a clear and consistent message.

A clever use of a DAM system, though, can help a lot here.

Like in that story with Concordia College, having a DAM system at your service means you have your entire digital library within easy reach.

You don’t have to waste your precious time looking for necessary photos or logos to send them to your designers, only to repeat the same (!) procedure several days later when you need to share them with your media partner.

A DAM service really saves you from getting bogged down with all this logistical routine. Instead, you can use this time smartly to do some more strategical thinking and generate powerful messages to the world out there.

Photo from RISE gala event. Courtesy of Concordia College.

Many other success stories from different universities prove that thoughtful, carefully planned marketing campaigns, spiced up with creativity, can do miracles to university brands.

Let that be a good inspiring example for you. Learn from best practices and avoid unfortunate blunders such as with the notorious new acronym for the Central University of Newcastle upon Tyne.

And use a smart Digital Assets Management service, of course, to keep your story clear and coherent.

If you haven’t registered yet, follow this link to create a free account.Welcome to check on the free trial version of Pics.io and explore its capabilities. We long to hear more success stories from you!

We’re always improving the Pics.io platform — and our users are the main source of insights! If you’ve got something in mind — don’t hesitate to drop us a word in the comments section below or on email. We’ll absolutely check it out and do our best to meet your needs.

Thanks to John Shpika.

Pics.io Team
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