By Carlos Silva/The Guardsman
City College is preparing a massive advertising campaign to alert current and future students that the school remains open and accredited, and to encourage students to enroll for the spring 2014 semester.
Peter Anning, City College’s director of Marketing and Communications as of Nov. 1, said the city has already prepared its marketing strategy to reach all students.
“We have spent $78,494 to date on a robust advertising campaign that includes ads in community newspapers, foreign language newspapers, English and Spanish broadcast and Internet radio, billboards, Facebook and cable television,” Anning said.
Anning said although the budget for next semester will be a little less than last semester’s, the college will use all the of money available to deliver the message to all current and potential students.
“More funds than these were earmarked for advertising for the spring 2014 semester,” Anning said. “But budget overruns from the past semester’s advertising campaign reduced our available funds somewhat.”
Additionally, City College’s Marketing and Public Information office understood in order to reach a large number of potential students they needed to spread the message over the Internet.
Anning said that City College has hired a firm that will help them send the message to the students.
“The state chancellor’s office has supported our efforts by hiring a very well-known and respected national community college research and marketing firm, Interact Communications, to do focus groups and surveys to help tailor and refine our messaging to appeal to a greater number of potential students,” Anning said. “They will also be producing one or more video advertisements that we can use however we would like, and assisting with messages going out to students who have registered, but not yet enrolled.”
Despite City College’s ongoing accreditation crisis, which could force the college to close next July, Anning believes that if strategies work well the marketing office will invest money in other areas to bring back more students.
“If funding holds up and our advertising/outreach campaigns continue to increase enrollment, my hope is that I will be given funding to assist specific programs that have lost students, with marketing materials and public relations assistance,” Anning said.