Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Marketing Loyola

To make Loyola become a more well-known school, Simpson Scarborough was hired to help market the school. Last Spring, prospective students, current students, faculty, and staff were interviewed to learn Loyola’s strengths and weaknesses. Loyola promotes a well rounded education; this company’s mission is to improve that idea as well as Loyola’s reputation. Through interviews, the pros and cons of Loyola defined which are then used to help improve this institution.

A logo, visual identity, and marks are reflections of a brand. Branding is the process of influencing those brands. Loyola’s brand positioning is creating a well rounded education. To achieve this goal, three questions must be asked: what is important to Loyola stakeholders, what Loyola does well, and what competing schools are not doing. The answers of these questions form a marketing strategy. Loyola’s strategy consists of academics, community service, and religious affiliation.

Hundreds of prospective students were interviewed before sending in an application to Loyola. Every person was asked what the most important aspect of Loyola is, sixty-seven percent said the variety of majors and fifty-one percent said academic advising. The least important aspect of Loyola was religious affiliation, with eight percent. They were also asked what characteristics they desired, seventy-three percent said well rounded and fifty-three percent said faculty advisor. Over a thousand current students were asked similar questions, they said the strengths were well-roundedness with sixty-five percent and fifty-one percent said the beautiful campus. When asked what are some quality indicators, people said majors, number of undergraduate programs, and number of professional programs. A couple hundred faculty and staff members were asked the strengths of the campus and fifty-five percent said well rounded, forty-seven percent said serving others, and thirty-two percent said the beautiful campus. The weakness of the school was school spirit, with a shockingly low three percent. Faculty said that community service makes Loyola unique. All of this information was compiled together and is presented with graphs. It is interesting to see the variations in the answers between these three groups. Every group mentioned Loyola providing a well rounded environment with academics, athletics, and community service, allowing everyone to be involved.

Towards the end of the discussion the group was asked about what we thought well rounded means and if it matters. There were various definitions, one person said a well rounded person is one who is involved in everything, athletics, community service, academics, and is a social person. Another person said a well rounded person is one who can relate and be involved in all different types of conversations. I think a well rounded person is one who has different experiences to learn from, these include classes, volunteering, working, and socializing with your peers.

Loyola encourages its students to become a well rounded person, through community service and academics. Part of the Jesuit identity is serving others. Hundreds of different opportunities are offered on campus to get the students involved. CCSJ is a very prominent organization on campus. Loyola is a liberal arts school; every student must take all of the required classes, including philosophy, theology, and English. In the survey, students said the most important strength is Loyola having their major, but there are many classes more classes outside a major to take, creating the well rounded person. Loyola’s brand position is a well rounded institution; according to these surveys Loyola is successful in marketing their position.

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