UW Brand

Communicating to students

The UW brand is the foundation for all campaign communications, including communicating to students. The “what you care about” framework intends to inspire society, unite our region and the world, and ultimately move people to support the UW in ways meaningful to them.

UW students receive hundreds of messages each day. E-mails, texts, social media posts and other forms of communications bombard them. How do we break through the noise?

We’ve learned that students will rarely read any emails that aren’t from friends or people they know or recognize. So when creating emails, tweets, etc., try to send them from accounts that are familiar to them. Ideally this would be one of the better-known students on campus, like those involved with ASUW, athletes, Husky 100 students etc.

Be Engaging
Engage students by communicating the campaign in relatable ways, emphasizing the UW’s compassionate spirit, our drive to innovate, our bold vision and our belief in what’s possible. Use “you” when speaking to students directly, helping them to see themselves in the messaging.

Be Brief
Keep in mind that students will most likely see your communications on their phone or mobile device, and they prefer messages that are short for easy skimming and scanning. No walls of text. In fact, they won’t even read content that they have to scroll through. When we say brief, we truly mean BRIEF. Keep the most important information near the top with links to additional content. If you’re trying to get them to attend an event, keep it simple with only the most basic information, along with when and where.

Be Authentic
“What you care about” is an expression of our brand, not a departure from it. As always, our tone of voice is true as well as personal, engaged and clear.

Be Beneficial
It’s imperative that students understand how the campaign and how your messages impact them. Communications should illustrate how their philanthropy affects the student experience. It should provide clear ways for them to participate.

In Summary
Communicating about the campaign with students is about being different, engaging and exciting. Students are ready to be part of something bigger than themselves, but in today’s always-connected world, we have to find a way to reach them. Don’t be afraid to make your content short, eye-catching, presented in new and creative ways, and in new and creative places.