The sheer volume of information that prospective students review during the college admission process can make it hard to distinguish one university from the next. To compensate, many prospects focus on data, numbers and charts to tell a story.
Because DePaul has such a vibrant narrative beyond the facts and figures, the Office of Undergraduate Admission, with support from EMM’s Web Communications, launched a microsite
in April 2016 to illustrate what daily life is like at DePaul. The site, aptly named Stories
, shows students, families and counselors things not normally found in traditional admission materials.
By surfacing under-the-radar content, the site addresses another recruitment challenge: How do you personalize information for your audience when you have over 20,000 undergraduate applicants each year? The wide-ranging content allows users to find stories that address their specific interests—something that cannot be done with more static communication vehicles.
Admission has been collecting content from all around campus to introduce audiences to the different and interesting people that add to the rich and diverse identity of DePaul. New stories are added each week to ensure the content stays fresh and encourage users to return for future visits.
In its first two months, the site had 7,147 pageviews from 2,133 users. Nearly 25 percent of the audience returned for multiple sessions. Users read an average of 2.5 stories per session.
Due to the size and complexity of the university, it can be challenging to filter through all the DePaul-related information to unearth unique stories. As Admission continues to populate the site, they invite members of the university community to provide their own stories to share. Examples of appropriate content include (but are certainly not limited to):
- Sharing pictures from a recent event.
- Introducing a student group.
- Describing an innovative service offered to incoming students.
- Highlighting the interesting careers or activities of alumni.