The Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

The Hashtag Higher Ed podcast is a bi-weekly podcast covering all aspects of higher education marketing, from blogging to social media, email to video, and beyond, with professionals in the higher education space across admissions, marketing, career services, alumni relations, and more.

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Season 1, Episode 1

The Changing Landscape of Blogging in Higher Education

In the first episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast, Stephen App sits down with Emily Brennan, Senior Specialist, Digital Communications at the University of Pennsylvania Law School, to talk about the changing landscape of blogging in higher education, the rise (and potential fall) of Medium, and publishing on rented land.


Season 1, Episode 2

Exploring the Rise of Video Marketing in Higher Education

Gina Benigno, a Video Production Manager at Temple University, joins the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast to discuss the rise of video marketing, how Temple addresses annual events in new ways to consistently engage its audience, the key to creating authentic video content, and how schools can invest in video marketing without breaking the bank.



Season 1, Episode 3

Lessons from Princeton University's Social Media Day

Eva Kubu, Fairy Job Mother and Director of Career Services at Princeton University, joins the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast to talk about Princeton University's Social Media Day, a “campus-wide professional development conference designed to bring together the entire community.”



Season 1, Episode 4

Enrollment Management in the Digital Age

Adam Castro, Vice President of Enrollment Management at Bloomfield College, joins the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast to discuss the three biggest changes in enrollment management since he joined the profession, why and how students and parents have become much more empowered in choosing a college, the surprising new inquiry form that Bloomfield College prospective students are using, and more.


Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast Adam Castro

Season 1, Episode 5

Influencer Marketing, Ambassador Kits, and Showing Your #TigerPride

Michelle Bartonico, Director of Marketing & Communications at Trinity University, shares how Trinity University is using brand ambassador kits, online and offline, to provide brand swag, facts and figures, and digital assets to alumni, staff, faculty, and students.

Michelle shares how the idea of digital and tangible ambassador kits came to be at Trinity, the hidden benefit to Trinity’s process of requesting an ambassador kit, and how Trinity is using user-generated content and social media takeovers to extend the impact of their influencer marketing.


Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast Trinity University

Season 1, Episode 6

Lessons from Temple's Most Socially Savvy Dean

David Boardman, dean of the Lew Klein School of Media and Communication at Temple University, talks about the benefits of staying socially engaged as dean, how he’s used Twitter as a tool for recruitment, and what advice he would give other academic administrators considering incorporating social media as part of their professional lives.



Bonus Episode

Digital's New Role in Education Marketing and Outreach

In this bonus episode of the Hashtag HigherEd Podcast, marketing professionals from Temple University, The University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business, Peddie School, and Lehigh University discuss branding in higher education, the biggest shift in education marketing over the past decade, the importance of meeting students where they are, why brand ambassadors are the key to marketing authenticity, and more.



eCity Interactive Digital's New Role in Education Marketing and Outreach

Season 1, Episode 7

Bringing the Power of Social Listening to Campus

Dr. Liz Gross joins the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast to discuss the case for engaging in true social listening, how professionals on campuses can get started with social listening, what the future holds in this ever-evolving space.



Hashtag Higher Ed Social Listening Liz Gross

Season 1, Episode 8

Butler's Marketing Goes to the Dogs

Kristi Smith, Associate Director of Enrollment Marketing at Butler University, and Michael Kaltenmark, Director of External Relations at Butler, discuss their innovative approach to Yield Marketing, in which they sent care packages to the dogs and cats of their accepted students on behalf of Butler's mascot, Butler Blue III. 


Episode8 -ButlerU-LinkedIn.jpg

Season 1, Episode 9

We Takin' Over (Your Social Media Channels)

Panelists from the University of Tennessee, Wheaton College, University of Warwick, and University of Surrey join the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast to discuss the the inspiration behind implementing social media takeovers on their campus, sourcing and vetting takeover candidates, evaluating takeover success, and more.



Season 1, Episode 10

Start Storytelling like Notre Dame

Andy Fuller, Director of Strategic Content, and Liz Harter, Social Media Manager, join the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast to discuss Stories at Notre Dame, a strategic storytelling endeavor that shares long-form content through a variety of mediums, raising awareness for the lesser-known aspects of a University famous for faith and football.


Stories at Notre Dame Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 1, Episode 11

Five Key Takeaways from Purdue University's Day of Giving

Purdue University's Day of Giving is widely considered the gold standard in social media fundraising within the higher education space. In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Kate Jolly, Director of Digital Fundraising, and Amber Turner, Senior Director of Annual Giving and Stewardship, take a break from planning for their fifth Day of Giving to share five key takeaways from their 24-hour online-driven social media fundraising event.


Purdue University Day of Giving

Season 1, Episode 12

Lessons from George Washington University's $1 Billion Campaign

Matt Lindsay, Executive Director of Digital Strategy and Engagement, and Jen Riordan, Executive Director of Donor Relations, join the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast to share lessons from George Washington University's "Making History" campaign, the largest comprehensive fundraising campaign in school history.


George Washington University Making History Campaign

Season 1, Episode 13

X Marks the Spot: Understanding Student Journey Mapping in Higher Education

JP Rains, Director of Digital Strategy at Laurentian University, joins the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast and explains why your institution needs a student journey map. Plus, JP offers a step-by-step guide to creating journey maps that lead to tangible improvements in the customer experience.


Student Journey Mapping

Season 1, Episode 14

Exploring Skidmore College's Podcast Series,
"This is Skidmore"

Jackie Vetrano, Social Media Coordinator at Skidmore College, joins the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast to discuss the story behind Skidmore College's podcast series, "This is Skidmore."

Jackie shares insights into how she develops topics for the show, the logistics of recording audio, and what she's learned after three seasons and 34 podcast episodes.


This is Skidmore Podcast

Season 1, Episode 15

Rebranding From Within: How Cabrini College Became Cabrini University

Shortly after joining Cabrini University, Vice President for Marketing and Communications Celia Cameron was given a clear directive: lead a school rebrand in 11 months with a small internal team and minimal budget.

In the season one finale of the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast, Celia Cameron details her organizational priorities for the rebrand, how her team gathered stakeholder buy-in throughout the process, and the challenges of maintaining a new brand post-launch.



Season 2, Episode 1

Stop Proposing on the First Date

When University of Wyoming Director of Enrollment Marketing Jenny Petty arrived on campus, she realized that UW's website functioned more like an internal tool than a marketing machine. Admissions pages were hard to find, the site was not mobile friendly, and the only call-to-action on the entire site was "apply."

In the season two premiere of Hashtag Higher Ed, Petty shares how the University of Wyoming transformed its website, adopted the inbound marketing methodology, and began generating prospective student leads via blogging, landing pages, and improved campaign measurement.


Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast University of Wyoming

Season 2, Episode 2

This is Fierce - Sweet Briar College

In 2015, Sweet Briar College was on the brink. In March, its board of directors announced that the school would close its doors in August, citing overarching and insurmountable challenges.

But the college's alumnae famously saved the school, and in the time since, Sweet Briar has roared back to life. In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast, Vice President for Communications and Enrollment Management Melissa Richards and Assistant Director for Content Strategy Janika Carey join the show to discuss Sweet Briar's new brand, the benefits and challenges of communicating with a female-only audience, and the role their admissions blog plays in attracting prospective students.



Season 2, Episode 3

The Internet is Iterative

If you work on the web for your institution, you've undoubtedly fielded a request to "put this on the website" or been asked "when the website will be done."

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Amanda Costello, Lead Content Strategist and Editor at the University of Minnesota College of Education and Human Development, stops by to share how she views the role of a content strategist, reveals her best advice for working with stakeholders on publishing requests, and discusses why the perception of the website as a product is so rampant in higher education.



Season 2, Episode 4

Bringing Levity to the College Search Process

What does airport security have to do with application requirements? What can prospective college students and their parents learn from head lice? For Georgia Tech’s Director of Undergraduate Admissions, Rick Clark, blogging has been a consistent part of his job since 2015, and each week is a new opportunity to use personal anecdotes to share valuable insights into the college admissions process.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Clark joins the show to share stories behind some of his best posts, the surprising activity that helps him conjure up fresh topic ideas, and the altruistic nature of blogging.


Rick Clark Georgia Tech

Season 2, Episode 5

Rethinking What Matters in a Website Redesign

Is your next website redesign project about new features and functionality? Or is it more about an internal culture shift in how and why you create content? In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast, Harvard University Director of Content Strategy Mike Petroff shares insights behind the decision to redesign Harvard’s digital newsroom, the Harvard Gazette.

We also discuss the challenges of scaling 1:1 communication in light of Facebook’s recent algorithm adjustment, choosing the right metrics for reporting and analytics, and the surprising new way Harvard is planning to make their content discoverable.


Mike Petroff Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 6

Becoming a Content Counselor

On campuses across the country, content strategists and creators are sharing new and exciting ways to communicate with key online constituents. And yet, those ideas often fall on deaf ears when working with internal campus stakeholders, who just want to do the same thing they've done for the past 10 years. Why won't they listen to you?

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Michael Powers, Executive Director of Marketing and Communications at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, shares the value in moving from a conformance mindset to a collaboration mindset, turning client relationships into real collaborations.


Michael Powers Indiana University of Pennsylvania Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 7

The Business of Social Platforms

You know your way around Facebook, Linkedin, and Google. But are you using their business platforms to their full potential? In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed podcast, higher ed marketer extraordinaire Matt Hames joins the show to talk about the business platforms offered by Google, Facebook, and Linkedin and why your institution should be using them. We also discuss Google’s new product announcement, and why it’s a game changer for higher education searches.


Matt Hames Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 8

Iterative Web Design Like a Maverick

Ahh, the website. At once an essential element of your marketing strategy and a massive resource hog. Jason Buzzell, Director of Digital Communications at the University of Nebraska Omaha, knows the conundrum well. Five years ago, he was tasked with updating a website that desperately needed an upgrade. But at an organization that prides itself on lean operations, devoting resources to a full-blown redesign wasn’t an option. His solution: iterative web design.

In this episode, Buzzell shares how the University of Nebraska Omaha redesigned their website using a phased approach, how his team prioritizes projects, the key to avoiding a Frankenstein website, and the “next big thing” that might require a change in their approach.



Season 2, Episode 9

Read the Comments

Have you ever heard someone say “don’t read the comments”? Across the web, the comments section is often affiliated with trolls, who incite others through polarizing opinions and offensive language. But on the University of Georgia’s Undergraduate Admissions blog, the comments section is a treasure trove of prospective student insight, with blog posts that occasionally receive more than 300 comments from interested UGA students.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, David Graves, UGA’s Senior Associate Director of Admissions Operations and Evaluation, joins the show to talk about the blog he has run since 2009. We discuss the challenge of keeping content fresh in a cyclical environment, the pros and cons of blending the personal and professional on Twitter, and how one person keeps up with so many prospective student questions.


David Graves University of Georgia Undergraduate Admissions Blog

Season 2, Episode 10

Get the (Ice Cream) Scoop

You undoubtedly deal with myths about your institution. From assumptions about student loans, tuition, and acceptance rates, your audience can easily take rumor as gospel, to the detriment of your admissions and marketing efforts. But how you are addressing those myths? In Wisconsin, one support foundation is dishing out facts and ice cream, one scoop at a time.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Tod Pritchard, Director of Media and Public Relations for the Wisconsin Foundation and Alumni Association, describes how his team came up with the idea of touring the state of Wisconsin in a refurbished 1957 International Harvester Metro van, the impact of their #getthescoop campaign for UW-Madison, and the surprising medium that’s helping them spread the word about this unique marketing campaign.


Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast Tod Pritchard

Season 2, Episode 11

Podcasting for the President, the Provost, and the People

For most marketing professionals, producing an institutional podcast is something that has recently become a professional goal. Tim Cigelske is not like most marketing professionals.

On this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Tim Cigelske shares the ins and outs of his years-long run of producing three podcasts for three distinct audiences at Marquette University. We chat about the various levels of planning and formality that encompass Marquette’s podcasts, why podcasting is ripe for experimentation, and Tim’s lost opportunity to team up with NBA superstar Dwayne Wade.


Tim Cigelske Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 12

Is List Buying the Best We Can Do?

Back in the 1980s, higher education institutions discovered a new way to reach student households at a fraction of the cost of television ads: name buys. Since then, name buys have morphed into a multi-million dollar industry, with colleges and universities across the country investing in the practice.

But are name buys really the best we can do? In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Jens Larson, Director of Student Communications at Eastern Washington University, shares his legal, ethical, and ROI concerns about list buying and identifies alternative marketing tactics he has used to build a more sustainable prospective student pipeline.


Jens Larson Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 13

Creating Authentic Content Through Instagram Stories

You’ve undoubtedly heard the word “authenticity” thrown around recently. Perhaps at a conference, in a webinar, or even in your own conversations. But while the word itself has become a bit of a buzzword, the meaning behind it is everything to today’s prospective college students.

In episode 29 of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Jason Boucher, Manager of Social Media at the University of New Hampshire, shares how his team at UNH is using current students to publish authentic social content, and why they’ve honed in on Instagram Stories as their method for doing so.



Season 2 Episode 14

Addressing Sexual Assault on Campus

When it comes to social media, it's easy to focus on the fun and funny. A clever .gif here, a cat meme there, rinse and repeat. But in February 2018, the social media team at BYU adopted a much more serious tone on their Instagram Story. In a series of videos and text updates, featuring students, staff, and faculty, BYU proactively talked about sexual assault on campus.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Jon McBride, Media Relations and Social Media Manager at BYU, shares the genesis of this idea, the key to earning institutional buy-in for the idea, the unanticipated Instagram feature that helped make an immediate difference for students, and the surprisingly stressful component of the project.



Jon McBride BYU Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 15

TargetX, CRMs, and Empowering Staff with Data

A CRM, or Customer Relationship Management platform, has gone from a nice to have to a need to have in higher education. But implementing this technology isn’t as simple as flipping a switch.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Jay Murray, Associate Vice President of Enrollment Services at Western Connecticut State University, discusses WCSU’s decision to adopt TargetX, the process for fully implementing a new CRM on campus, and the ways WCSU continues to use TargetX to expand, automate, and personalize its prospective and admitted student communication.


Jay Murray Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 16

Alexa, Are Voice Assistants the Next Big Thing on Campus?

Whether you personally own a voice assistant or not, you’ve certainly heard about their growing popularity. One in six US adults (or around 39 million people) now own a voice-activated smart speaker, and 50% of all searches are projected to be voice searches by 2020. But can voice assistants work on campus? Do we need them to?

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, David Hakanson, Vice President, CIO, and Chief Innovation Officer at Saint Louis University, discusses the decision to place Amazon Echo Dots at SLU’s 2,300+ residence areas, how his team implemented the deployment in just three months, how students are using these devices, and how SLU is balancing access to information with student privacy concerns.


David Hakanson Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 17

Content Repurposing on Campus

Across higher education, marketers are routinely being asked to increase their content production. And yet, in a 2018 survey by TerminalFour, the majority of marketers said their marketing team and budget had either not changed or decreased in the past 24 months. How can marketers work smarter, rather than just harder?

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Justin Laing, Senior Manager, Strategic Marketing and Communications at the University of Queensland, discusses his initiative to repurpose content, with a goal of producing ten pieces of content from one hour with a researcher on campus. We talk about where this idea came from, the logistics of repurposing content, and Justin’s advice for implementing this idea on your campus.


Justin Laing Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 18

Getting Transparent about the Cost of Attendance

According to the 2018 e-Expectations report, cost/tuition information and scholarship opportunities are the two primary reasons prospective college students visit your website. And yet, across higher education, financial aid pages are littered with insider language, fine print, and confusing instructions. But Calvin College has taken a different approach.

In this episode of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Nate Hibma, Assistant Director of Web Services at Calvin College, shares the story behind Calvin's take on college affordability, “Cutting the Price Tag.” We discuss the casual voice and tone of the content, how Hibma and his team structured the page for scannability, and why talking talking to students (and parents) about financial aid in a style they understand is more important now than ever.

See the Page:…-aid/affordability/


Nate Hibma Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast

Season 2, Episode 19

What Does it Mean to be Creative?

When was the last time you were creative? Did you take a moment to recognize your own accomplishment? Did you share that feeling with others? Creativity is a sticky subject; difficult to identify and harder to hone. And yet, we are surrounded by it, personally and professionally.

In the season 2 finale of the Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast, Amma Marfo, speaker and consultant at Fun Enterprises, joins the show for a special in-studio episode to talk about all things creativity. We discuss how to recognize your own creativity, getting comfortable with sharing your projects and accomplishments, why higher education is ripe for new ideas, and how to breed an environment that lends itself to creative thinking.


Amma Marfo Hashtag Higher Ed Podcast