Branding is For Retention, Not Just Recruitment

Wednesday, April 10, 2019, 1:30 PM EST

Sean Williams

#HigherEd Marketing Advisor
Dashboard Marketing Inc.

Sean Williams has over 20 years of experience in marketing and communications. His marketing shop – Dashboard Marketing – specializes in the area of #HigherEd, and works with institutions across Canada and the US in areas such as institutional branding, recruitment marketing, retention, social media, digital engagement and research.


Sean worked for a time at StFX University as their Director of Communications and Marketing, and was a marketing consultant with US based SEM Works and Ruffalo Noel Levitz. He’s a frequent guest speaker at post-secondary institutions, and offers his time as a mentor for student based startup and entrepreneurial courses and organizations (i.e. Enactus).

Webinar Summary:

Today, institutions are more focused on branding than ever before. It can be extremely challenging managing a brand in the higher education sector, especially when potential and current students live in a world driven by snaps, stories, VR and emojis.

It's impressive and exciting when an academic brand breaks through, makes a connection, and wins the heart of a student. Some would say that once the new student has registered, and shows up for class, the branding job is done... but it's only just begun. What many forget is that strong branding is more important to those already connected to the institution versus those being recruited to join it.

In this session, Sean Williams will speak to the importance of branding, the impact it has on retention, how good institutional branding powers student success, and how a strong brand keeps students coming back year after year. He will highlight and speak to how key areas across campus support the institution's brand, and ensures students stay engaged, successful and loyal.

This session will speak to the undergraduate and graduate years, as well as highlight how best to transition students into active Alumni that are vocal brand advocates. Advocates that will help recruit new students, give back to the institution or simply stay involved.

Comments From Previous Presentation Attendees 


(Gathered anonymously from SEMM Forum 2018 app feedback)

"Great presentation because it gave me insight into why my PSI is making their current changes to student success & student service processes!"

"Great content, good questions and conversation. Engaging presenter."

"Best session I attended!"

"Great insights! All helpful."

"Excellent presentation, good information and vibrant speaker."

"Great presentation, good conversation. Relevant."

"Really good content and presentation. Lots of good take always."

"Happy to hear that we’re moving in the right direction with brand and student experience."

"Thank you for a great session!"


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