On Monday, April 16, there was a meeting in the BTC auditorium to discuss the new motto and marketing campaign for Hudson Valley. The meeting was started with words from Dr. Andrew Matonak, President of Hudson Valley: “ You guys have heard over the past couple months about how important enrollment is.v Today you will hear about our marketing plan going forward.” “We asked Smith and Jones to understand the priorities and the challenges we deal with at Hudson Valley, particularly the different public that we are engaged with. To take a fresh look at our image and our advertising and marketing strategy,” said Matonak.
He went on the say that the old motto was, “We are the community’s college,” but “We are so much more than that.” President and Creative Director for Smith and Jones, Christine Tieri was the key speaker for the presentation. She explained the thought process of the group and the direction they went.“We were so excited when we sat down with senior staff and felt the energy here at Hudson Valley, we learned so much from you guys, from the moment we stepped foot on campus we were so impressed how proud people are to work here and just the passion that people feel for the school. It made our job pretty easy,” said Tieri. She continued to discuss about what a brand should mean to an organization. Using the company examples of Target, Apple and Harley Davidson, she spoke about adding to the brand experience and consistency of the attitude.
“We started with a brand discovery report using the objectives that you guys gave us and then adding research that you provided us and research we did on our own. Funneled into the brand positioning report, this was hundreds and hundreds of hours went into this,” said Tieri. Tieri also talked about the mission to incorporate the many faces of the school and the spirit of the college to increase enrollment. Talking about current students that will continue to take classes as well as the 65,000 or so alumni that are from HVCC, many are looking to encourage others to attend. “We want a simple but bold message,” she said, discussing the marketing strategy they used, looking to capitalize on a personal connection. “A few years back, it might not have been sexy to go to a community college, but [with] the economy the way it’s been, and the price of higher education sky rocketing, people are taking a closer look at community colleges and seeing what they offer. It’s a smart choice because of all the options here. So this is your time.”
The brand statement they came up with to guide them while working on the creative side that describes the college and the attitude they wanted to project, Tieri stated, is, “Hudson Valley Community College cultivates successful futures through personal connections and a progressive approach to learning.” So, our new tagline is, “Be Bold. Be a Viking.” She explained that “To be a Viking, it doesn’t mean you have to join the football team, although it would be great if you would. Viking is going to become a culture… it’s going to penetrate everywhere here and people are going to have that feeling of pride… We’re going to redefine what it means to be a Viking. A Viking is bold, it’s giving you permission to forge your own path.” “You can go anywhere from here,” Tieri explained.