Navigate Up
Sign In

One-Hour Workshops: Communications and Advancement Track

Designed for heads and trustees as well as communication and advancement practitioners, these workshops address what it takes to ensure effective communication to — and relations with — all key constituencies.​​​​​​​​​

  • Block 1 (Thursday, February 26, 8:00 - 9:00 AM)
    • Creating Whole School Marketing Buy-in at Your School

      108

      Do you listen to presentations about amazing faculty blogs, web pages or whole-school marketing campaigns and find yourself wishing your faculty colleagues would join the movement? We did! Discover our successes and failures on this journey, swap ideas, and share your own stories of success and frustration. ​​​​​​​​​
      Presented BySarah McDonough and Kate Prahlad, Wakefield School (VA)
      -
      Level Intermediate
      -
      ExploreWhat strategies can you employ to bring faculty on board with your school's marketing efforts? What marketing efforts are most successful: blog, webpages, direct mail, or others? What are other schools doing that works and what doesn't work?
      -
    • Hashtag Viewbook

      109

      Randolph School found the best storytelling team for our viewbook — students. The communications office collaborated with faculty to help our students demonstrate the value of a Randolph education through their own words, crowd-sourced photographs, and design. The result is a book that captures the authenticity and energy of the student voice. (Added bonus: Our school saved a bundle on design fees.)
      Presented ByRebecca Moore, Jennifer Rossuck, and Peter Townsend, Randolph School (AL)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can students, parents, and teachers help authentically promote your school? How can you effectively leverage your community's social media content in your marketing efforts? How can the advancement office collaborate with teachers to create project-based learning opportunities for the benefit of all involved?
      -
    • Relational Fund-Raising: Major Gift and Mid-Level Donor Strategies

      110

      The most successful fund-raising organizations develop strategies not just to acquire donors but also grow them seamlessly through the organization. Major gift fund-raising is the single most effective way to increase revenue without increasing expenses. Join us for a fast-paced workshop packed with practical and immediately actionable tools, handouts, and tips on developing, managing, and growing a major and mid-level gifts strategy.
      Presented ByDaniel Neel, The Fundraising Resource Group (FL); Joseph Therber, Scecina Memorial High School (IN)
      -
      LevelAdvanced
      -
      Explore How deep into the donor pool can I effectively go? How do I create and implement an effective portfolio management process? How do I effectively measure the success of my efforts?
      -
    • Why Should More Parents Value Your School? No, Really—Why?

      206

      What do prospective and current parents value about your school?  Through numerous school examples and, in particular, one case study, the presenters explain how targeted market research and a planning process focused on the question “What value do we bring?” can lead to unforeseen and important shifts in admissions, communications, program, and even school culture.
      Presented ByBen Edwards, Art & Science Group, Inc. (MA); Richard Hardy, Concord Academy (MA)
      -
      LevelIntroductory
      -
      Explore How do program distinctions and innovation, marketing, school culture, changing competitors, changing demographics, and other factors affect a school’s value proposition? How do price and financial aid relate to perceived value? How is strategic positioning different from strategic planning?    
      -
  • Block 2 (Thursday, February 26, 12:00 - 1:00 PM)
    • Branding: Discovering and Communicating Your School's Identity

      107

      The brand journey for a school starts with extensive external research, resulting in a vivid expression of identity. Come share the data we gathered. Explore the implications for all schools, as well as how the data specifically influenced decisions regarding the ultimate brand identity for Oregon Episcopal School.
      Presented ByMartin Jones and Mo Copeland, Oregon Episcopal School (OR); Lisa Jordan, Mindpower Inc. (GA); Mark Kemball, Oregon Health & Sciences University Foundation (OR); Dana Edwards, SimpsonScarborough (VA)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can you lead the discovery of your school's identity and brand essence in 24 months or fewer?  How do you develop effective and illuminating quantitative research instruments to guide your branding process?  How do you include your community of stakeholders, budget, and roll out branding work in an exciting and compelling way?
      -
    • Building the Plane While Flying: Five Strategies to Launch a Campaign with Ever-Evolving Plans

      108

       In today's fast-paced educational environment, schools often need to start campaigns to seize opportunities as they arise. When your plans are still evolving, you must engage your community and make them comfortable with flexibility while you finalize the ultimate vision. Discuss five key strategies to build comfort and buy-in from your constituencies and review a case study of a school that navigated issues.
      Presented ByBart Baldwin, St. Luke's School (NY); Eric Javier, CCS Fundraising (NY)
      -
      LevelIntroductory
      -
      Explore What is the value of a feasibility study when the strategic vision may not be fully established? How do you position your case statement? How do you instill ownership through your volunteer leadership structure?
      -
  • Block 3 (Thursday, February 26, 1:30 - 2:30 PM)
    • Adding Oomph to Advancement in Small Schools

      107

      Making small school advancement make sense requires vision, confidence, collaboration, creativity, and action plans that are both meaningful and practical. Take home a bag of tricks, including approaches to constructing a realistic, sustainable, big picture context for what you do and where you're headed and ways to work on balancing ambitious goals with realistic, manageable practices.
      Presented ByStarr Snead, Advancement Connections (SC); Shelley Reese, The Learning Center for the Deaf (MA)
      -
      LevelIntroductory
      -
      Explore What are the key tools needed to build and run a successful advancement program?  What are the essential elements to building a short-term and long-term plan for your advancement efforts?  What measurement tools and benchmarks can be used to measure success??
      -
    • From Grand Plans to Grand Openings: Realizing the Institutional Strategic Plan

      210

      "Reengineering education" is the phrase The Episcopal School of Dallas (ESD) used to describe its ambitious and far-reaching strategic plan completed in 2012. Find out how ESD transitioned from the strategic plan to creating a campus master plan based on its principles to constructing a comprehensive campaign to support and fund the people, programs, and facilities needed to realize the school's vision.
      Presented ByRuth Burke, The Episcopal School of Dallas (TX); John Prokos, Gund Partnership (MA)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can a stratrgic plan be translated into visionary yet fundable campus planning solutions?  How can an independent school engage the broad cross section of its community to create buy-in and consensus, particularly in the face of difficult and sometimes sensitive decisions? Once the campus master plan is complete, how can the institution then build a successful campaign to realize its strategic, endowment, and physical plant goals?
      -
    • How Do You Measure Up? Strategies for Engaging Users Online

      310

      From learning management systems and mobile apps to parallax scrolling and responsive design, independent schools are shifting web strategies to engage an increasingly tech-savvy and mobile community. Uncover tips to organize your school’s web strategy, make data-driven decisions, provide a great brand experience, and get the best return on your techology investments.
      Presented ByJon Moser, finalsite (CT)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can I organize and execute a web strategy at my school?   How can my school obtain the best return on investment for our web presence?   What are other independent schools doing--and how can I learn from them?
      -
    • What You Learn May/Will Shock You: Parents and Students Weigh in on the School Admission Process

      203

      Two surveys: What do students want in a school?  What about mom and dad? SSATB separately surveyed students and parents seeking insight into the critical elements of school marketing, the application process, and more. Learn the truth about school fairs, campus tours, common apps, and what you need to focus on in your marketing.
      Presented ByAimee Gruber, Secondary School Admission Test Board (NJ); Kevin Plummer, Tampa Preparatory School (FL)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore What are the most valuable marketing messages parents and students are seeking when creating their school selection list? What are the key marketing tactics every admission office should focus on during the year? What student-to-student and parent-to-admission office experiences are most effective in the admission decision process and how can they be enriched to enhance the prospective family’s understanding of your school’s value propositions?
      -
  • Block 4 (Friday, February 27, 8:00 - 9:00 AM)
    • Practical Tools to Make Your Messages Sing

      103

      Making your mission and vision statements more unique and compelling? Getting everyone in your school delivering the same key messages? Impossible? Not at all! Focusing on both the high-level mission and vision and the practical day-to-day work of describing the school, learn practical tools you can use in your school immediately. Bring your questions to discuss with the group.
      Presented BySkip Kotkins, Carney, Sandoe & Associates (WA); Amanda Darling, Lakeside School (WA)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can you make your mission and vision statements truly unique and still have an inclusive process?  How can you have an inclusive process in which everyone contributes to and then adopts a few vital key messages that they use to talk about the school?  What is the role of messaging in today's competitive, demanding independent school world?
      -
    • Rock Your School’s Website: Lessons from 3,000+ Independent Schools

      206

      The results are in! Learn the outcomes from an industrywide website navigation and usability survey of 3,000+ private school websites. See how schools position themselves for success. Explore how many schools are building responsive websites and how they utilize navigation and content. Use the survey results as a brand new tool to evaluate your website navigation against industry standard practices.
      Presented ByPeter Baron, Blackbaud (NH); Stacy Jagodowski, Cheshire Academy (CT)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How do you use analytics, SEO, and survey data to drive your site’s navigation and usability? What is information architecture and why is it critical to your site’s success? How can you use the results from the Independent School Website Navigation study to improve your school’s website?
      -
    • Solicitation Savvy = Fearless Fund-Raising

      305

      A little experience is all you need to learn the positive language and mindset for enjoying gift solicitation and doing it well. Design a successful solicitation strategy, identify tips and techniques for training volunteer fund-raisers, learn how to address donor objections, and work through a case study that provides an opportunity to put theory into practice.
      Presented ByStarr Snead, Advancement Connections (SC); Shelley Reese, The Learning Center for the Deaf (MA)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore What (subtle or not-so-subtle) signals do donors give that help us know how and when and why to ask them for a gift?  How do we get to a yes and what happens when we geta no when we ask for a gift?  What role should volunteers, heads, trustees, and advancement professionals play in the process?
      -
    • What Keeps You up at Night? Prepare for What Could be Your School's Worst Event

      210

      Even the strongest, best prepared leaders fear crises, which can feel very unsettling. There are ways you can prepare in advance in addition to policies and procedures. Discuss crises ranging from sexual misconduct to the death of a student and many others. Gain proven strategies that will help manage the unimaginable. Analyze the current crisis landscape and best practices.
      Presented ByJane Hulbert, The Jane Group (IL); Myra McGovern, NAIS (DC)
      -
      LevelIntroductory
      -
      Explore What can I do in advance to prepare for a crisis? What a crisis team is, who is on it and how should they train as a team? What are the first steps in a crisis?
      -
  • Block 5 (Friday, February 27, 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM)
    • Are You Ready for a Capital Campaign?

      308

      Are you ready for a capital campaign? You may need a new science building, more scholarships, or a larger endowment, but are you – and your donors – really ready for a capital campaign? Gain insight so your school can evaluate its donor and institutional readiness.
      Presented ByJeff Muddell, Winkler Group (SC); Christopher Hayes, Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy (FL)
      -
      LevelAdvanced
      -
      Explore Are our needs compelling enough and is our board's sphere of influence strong enough for a capital campaign? How do we set a realistic campaign goal? How many qualified prospects do we need to reach our goal?
      -
    • Consumer Education About Independent Education in a Changing Market

      101

      How do schools communicate their value proposition to a changing demographic of parent consumers? Learn about varying models of independent education that preserve the community and traditions of independent education while diversifying programs to meet the needs of each student, thereby communicating return on investment to parents.
      Presented ByKelley Waldron, Sara Rubinstein and Peter Smith, St. Andrew's School (GA)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How do schools communicate their value proposition to a changing demographic of parent consumers? How do independent schools promote customer service while maintaining the best interest of the student as their highest goal? What models of independent education are available for schools looking to differentiate instruction to meet individual student needs?
      -
    • Measuring Online Engagement: 10 Things Every School Should Do

      110

      Competition among independent schools in some markets is fierce. That competition is driving schools to invest more in marketing and an improved online presence. Knowing how to leverage digital media to tell your school’s story is more important than ever. If you don’t know what is working, how can you get better? Learn how to measure your digital successes and gather empirical data around your digital communications.
      Presented ByJaime Lassman and Elizabeth Pride, The Lexington School (KY); Kelley Jarrett, blackbaud (SC)
      -
      LevelIntroductory
      -
      Explore What ways are independent schools connecting with their constituents over digital pathways? How can my school become better at digital communication (emails, website, social media, videos) and make informed decisions about how to allocate time and resources? Once my school starts to measure our digital success, how can we become an organization that learns from that assessment?
      -
    • Special Project? Crowd Fund It!

      109

      Donors want to know their gifts will be applied toward needs they can personally endorse. Give your audience a menu of current, detailed funding needs and start seeing new results in fund-raising. With a microsite you can share specific projects that would attract funding so donors can visualize what their gifts will support.
      Presented ByMimi McMann and Suzanne Connors, Graland Country Day School (CO)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can your campaigns reach Gen Xers and Millennials? Can dynamic communications elevate your fundraising objectives? Is crowd funding a viable approach for your special projects, and what critical features should be considered?
      -
    • The Ugly Truth About Branding and Marketing Communications RFPs: They Are Hurting You

      111

      Your marketing and branding request for proposal is an essential ingredient in identifying the right strategic partner to help with market research, position analysis, message development, specialized creative and production services, and ad planning. But most school RFPs fail to provide the essential information needed to make the best choice. Learn the right way to get the big results you need.
      Presented ByCarol Cheney, Cheney & Company (CT); David Thiel, Deerfield Academy (MA)
      -
      LevelAdvanced
      -
      Explore What is the anatomy of a Request for Proposal(RFP) and how do you write one after  you do your homework on the scope of the project, budget and timetable?  How can making the right choice of a strategic partner help support your branding and marketing efforts and give you the competitive edge?  How can you nderstand the roles of staff, volunteer marketing committees, and outside professionals in determining the best fit for the job?
      -
  • Block 6 (Friday, February 27, 1:30 - 2:30 PM)
    • Kaboom! Launching Your Next Campaign with a Bang

      107

      Excited about your new strategic plan? Bringing a vision to fruition is rewarding but daunting work and therein lies a design challenge: How can schools maintain the high levels of engagement that lead to effective implementation? Find out how one school used design thinking as a leadership strategy to reimagine the whole concept of strategic plan and in the process launch the loudest quiet phase in fund-raising history.
      Presented ByMatt Glendinning, Moses Brown School (RI)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can design thinking be applied as a leadership strategy? After a rousing period of strategic planning, how can we avoid the feeling of dormancy that often accompanies the quiet phase of a capital campaign? What is a strategic plan anyway?
      -
    • Personalized Storytelling to Drive Word-of-Mouth Brand Attention for Your School

      108

      Word of mouth is the most trusted form of advertising and in the Digital Age those testimonials have moved online. Worcester Academy and Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall have both implemented a personalized storytelling strategy to encourage, facilitate, and scale marketing efforts that maximize the number of people talking about positive outcomes at their institutions.
      Presented ByGreg Abel and Matt Soule, Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall School (MA); Neil Isakson, Worcester Academy (MA); Amy Mengel, Merit Pages, Inc. (NY)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore How can independent schools leverage parents and students to become brand ambassadors and share positive stories about their school experience? What are strategies for efficiently creating a lot of marketing content that showcases student outcomes and experiences, and then deploying that content to the highest-impact channels? How are schools blending traditional, offline marketing tactics with online strategies like social media to encourage word-of-mouth testimonials and track or measure results?
      -
    • The Board's Role in Development

      109

      Every trustee must play a clearly defined role in development! Following the new fourth edition of The Handbook of Philanthropy at Independent Schools, focus on key trustee roles as fiduciaries, philanthropic leaders, donors, and fund-raisers. Cover themes including assembling the right board, assuring readiness for a successful development program, and working with your head, development director, and volunteers.
      Presented ByHelen Colson, Helen Colson Development Associates (MD)
      -
      LevelIntermediate
      -
      Explore Why is the trustee’s role in development so critical today? How can trustees support the development program as fiduciaries?What are the trustees’ responsibilities as fundraisers and donors?
      -
 

 Highlighted Sponsor

 
 

 From Twitter...