Published on 2014/11/17
Marketing CE: Making Office Calendars Stick
It’s critical for continuing education leaders to create marketing collateral that appeals to their core audience.

As we approach the change to a new year, the typical wall calendars are beginning to show up in the mail. Wall calendars come from businesses of all descriptions; real estate agencies, Chinese food restaurants, the dairy farmers and, of course, your local university or alma mater.

Some universities have wall calendars produced with images of campus buildings. We decided to take a slightly different approach. For our continuing education program, we’ve produced smaller magnet calendars that show the year in a grid format, and also include a list of upcoming classes with start dates.

Our student population is, of course, different from that of the main campus. For one, the vast majority of our students are working professionals. The big, glossy images of campus and memories of the football team don’t necessarily speak to their experiences with us. Secondly, they’re very functional, providing potential students and employers with actionable information that could impact their own interactions with us. It goes to treating the student like a customer, and providing them the information they need to make purchasing decisions.

We’ve found feedback from our student population of professional, office-based employees to these calendars to be positive for a few reasons:

U of A Calendar
The magnetic calendar gives professionals an opportunity to see, at a glance, when classes are being offered
1. Allows a smaller (4″x6″) calendar that fits within most office cubicle areas as compared to a big wall foldout calendar.

2. The magnetic back allows the calendar to stick to typical office furniture (file cabinets, cubical walls, break room fridge, etc.)

3. Class schedule is printed on the bottom, saving students from having to continuously check the website.

4. The university logo is across the top. While it’s not a picture of the stadium, fans of our athletics programs have been known to cut the logo out and use it for other purposes around their office.

5. The price for a small magnet calendar is much lower than a full color printed glossy calendar.

Calendars are handed out in classes, at the front desk and at community and marketing events. The classes listed on the calendar are all public, open-enrollment classes, color coded by topic and for visual pop. In addition, the website and other contact information is included on the calendar.

These calendars are not timeless, but for the small cost, it’s a great marketing item that stays in front of prospective students all year.

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Readers Comments

Rebecca Muir 2014/11/17 at 11:32 am

I’ve had to come around to the fact that our professional students don’t care about the football team, but I myself have always been partial to the big glossy calendars 

Alice H. 2014/11/17 at 4:01 pm

This is a great idea for a little marketing tidbit. Much better to have something small and practical people will actually use to get them to look at it, rather than trying to make something that’s pretty enough that people will want to look at it all the time.

Elissa Henderson 2014/11/19 at 10:06 am

Agree this is a great idea for a marketing promotional handout – esp if targeted to a category of program (IT training) Won’t work as nicely for large diverse offerings.

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