Why a .PDF Campus Map Doesn’t Cut It in 2012

In order to stay on the competitive edge of college recruitment, you also have to stay on the cutting edge of the ever-changing developments in technology and social media.

That means moving on from the old .pdf versions of your campus map. Prospective students are going to be looking for and demanding more from your online features in 2012.

Tell your entire story

Think of the great touch-screen technology out now. People expect to be able to simply touch or click and see movement on their screens. Because of this, your campus map design needs to go beyond what an old, flat map on paper used to do. Utilize your campus map design to tell stories that a regular map could never tell. You can draw the prospective student into your world by using features in your interactive campus map like:

  • Photos of the inside of classrooms, the library, and recreational areas
  • Allow for ‘exploring’ your campus by zooming in and out of certain areas like dorms, lecture halls, etc.
  • Embedding links to take you to other pages with more information about a location
  • Putting in videos of current students and their activities, even peer-to-peer guided tours
  • Live-stream, so they can have a look at real classes and student life happening in the moment
  • Add interesting stories, facts, or even teacher biographies
  • A live chat box where visitors can ask questions as they ‘tour’ your campus
  • And much more…

Benefit all your audiences

It is true that we are always blogging about the benefits of an interactive map for recruitment purposes, but when done right it can be a valuable resource for all of your markets.

  • Current students can learn more about the history of locations that they might not visit every day.
  • New students can use it to help them find where their new classes are located or where the cafe is.
  • Alumni can keep up with the changes of campus as new buildings are added and older buildings are modified.
  • Visitors can easily find the stadium, a venue for an event, or the location of points of interest on campus.

The idea is to really leverage the content and media that you have or are creating, and use them to make your campus map design vibrant and real. Your .pdf map of campus will still have value as a print piece but the modern web visitors want and expect more. A flat image can’t tell the history, show the beauty, or share the active stories of your campus ecosystem. The word ‘map’ is taking on a whole new meaning, and you will want to be a part of creating that new meaning! So don’t be afraid to put your school out there by using new marketing strategies. It will pay off.

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