Why Your Campus Map is Critical to Aligning Online and Offline Marketing

A little while back our friend Georgy Cohen wrote a thoughtful post about aligning offline and online content.  The new world of marketing requires a seamless transition between offline content and the growing world of online content. These two marketing strategies must mesh seamlessly to provide one continuous experience for people interacting with your campus. An interactive campus map is a powerful tool to align these two marketing strategies and bridge the gap between the physical experience of visiting a campus and the collaborative online experience.

Immersed in Your Story
In a recent “Wired” article, author Frank Rose (“The Art of Immersion”) says that people want to get involved in the story around them and find their place within that story. On your campus, you want to provide opportunities for people to immerse themselves with your story. And, it’s imperative the online and offline stories match up. If they don’t, you have essentially betrayed your audience.

An interactive campus map provides several opportunities for students, faculty and more to get involved with campus life and with the university story. Before visiting, prospective students and their parents can tour the facilities and read comments from other visitors or watch video tours of buildings. They could also pull up event calendars to see what’s coming up next on campus or link directly to Twitter feeds related to events, faculty members or buildings.

Once on campus, those same prospective students can access the mobile version of your interactive map and continue to interact with your university online while  exploring the offline content at the sites themselves, which could include QR codes or the ability to check in to sites. By allowing these students to become part of your university’s story, you help invest them in your institution.

Making the Stories Match
An interactive campus map can help your online and offline stories match up. When it comes to any kind of marketing, the message must be consistent. If the online experience doesn’t match up to the in person experience, your marketing message won’t have the integrity it needs to be effective. An interactive campus map can provide the bridge between the two marketing messages and become the anchor for a content strategy.

By maintaining an up to date interactive campus map that ties in to events, activities and the latest campus news, you match the physical experience of campus to the online experience and allow them to play off of each other.

Building Trust
Making sure your online message and offline experience enhance your community’s experience is vital to building trust with your campus visitors. An interactive campus map can bridge the two experiences and connect people to your school in an entirely new way.

Photo Credit: Balancing Act by Digitalnative

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