Update on strategic positioning for April 2022 | Hockey championship, record-breaking media placements and launching new tools
The recent weeks have been filled with excitement and high energy, as the hockey team brought home a national victory and the University launched our new portal, MyDU. The growth and energy in our campus community matches that of the scenery outside my window–with buds and tulips finally coming to bloom in Denver. Spring is bringing plenty to celebrate–including breaking, once again, our media placement record! I could not be more energized for the weeks and months to come.
We were all thrilled to watch the hockey team win against the University of Michigan in the Frozen Four and then take the championship in the third period of a nail-biting game against Minnesota State! MarComm supported the celebration with social media posts, a website banner announcement, takeover edition of The Bridge, on-campus game-night support, and much more. Together with our partners in Athletics & Recreation, Student Affairs & Inclusive Excellence, and Campus Safety, we ensured stakeholders knew what was happening and how to cheer on our team safely and respectfully.
For the most part, the celebrations were held responsibly and with respect shown to neighbors around DU. A highlight of the night was when hundreds of students took to the courtyard after the game, singing “Take Me Home, Country Roads.” It was a singular moment of unity and school spirit that will not soon be forgotten.
Our social media engagement around the hockey team broke records! One of the LinkedIn posts from the victory saw 8,600 reactions, 312 comments, and 333 shares. Another post currently stands as our top performing Facebook post to date, receiving more than 100 comments. The same is true for Instagram where one of our hockey posts stands at #1 with a 20.5% engagement rate. In addition, we had great visibility and interactions with key Denver institutions like the Broncos, Avalanche, and many others.
I want to give a special shout-out to the Athletics & Recreation team and their collaborators as well. The social media on the Denver Pioneers channel as well as the hockey team’s feeds were constantly updated with exciting new videos and content. They also did a great job pulling together a celebration for our campus community and updating their website so we could all get memorabilia and tickets for next year. Congratulations, Athletics & Recreation team!
The Bridge Refresh
Consider The Bridge refreshed! On April 5, The Bridge moved to a once-a-week newsletter that contains all the news and announcements you value plus unique content created exclusively for The Bridge readers. We will be featuring department and program profiles, staff and faculty profiles, professional development resources, welcomes for new employees, games, trivia contests, and more. But we cannot do it alone. Please send news and story ideas to email@example.com to help keep our faculty and staff community informed on the latest happenings in your area.
Record-Breaking Media Placements Again
Records are made to be broken, and in March, we shattered our February record for media hits once again. The 143 total media hits in a single month as well as the 104 of those appearing in local outlets means two new records for our media. The 39 appearances in national and elite media outlets in March fell just short of surpassing the record set in January 2020. While no one story on its own contributed to the record month, the passing of Secretary Madeline Albright, DU’s Prison Arts Initiative launching the first statewide prison radio station in U.S. history, and the hockey team’s journey to the Frozen Four to emerge as national champions were the three biggest events that contributed to a record month in March.
MyDU, our new portal system that will replace PioneerWeb, is now available for staff. As the first members of our community to interact with MyDU during this critical soft launch phase, we hope you will take the time to visit the platform and see all that it has to offer. We also encourage you to provide feedback using this survey link so we can better prepare for the full campus-wide launch of MyDU in June. PioneerWeb will be fully replaced and inaccessible beginning September 1, so be sure to change your bookmarks and favorite links accordingly. Please share this information with your colleagues, so everyone is prepared for this change.
Crisis Communications and Issues Management
MarComm and Campus Safety have partnered to adopt the National Incident Management System (NIMS). NIMS is a comprehensive, national approach to incident management and provides a consistent framework to enable organizations to prepare for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate the effects of any incident. One of the hallmarks of the system is a clear structure for role assignment and decision-making while planning for and reacting to crises. Campus Safety is meeting with the individuals on campus who have been tagged for a specific ICS role. Next steps will include training later this spring and summer followed by tabletop exercises to pressure test our processes and find areas of improvement. In addition to forming the teams, MarComm and Campus Safety are developing a comprehensive Emergency Operations and After Care Guide for the University.
The progress we have seen in such a brief period around internal and crisis communication is invigorating. It puts new wind under our sails, propelling us into the heavy work that is to come in both areas.
Thank you for your continued partnership in all of our communications activities–we could not do this work without you! As always, please feel free to reach out to me, Shira Good (Shira.Good@du.edu), or Johanna Blickenstaff (Johanna.Blickenstaff@du.edu) with any questions you might have regarding our communications, marketing, or strategic positioning efforts.