Involvement Content Strategy

Campus Involvement Content Strategy

Each semester new students step onto campus craving connection – to their peers, upperclassmen, and mentors that can bring them into the fold. The first step is always the hardest, and no one understood that better than the current student body president whose entire college trajectory branched from the first club meeting he showed up to. That’s why we focused on his story as the center of our student organization involvement campaign.

We utilized print, social media, web banners, ads, and email, adapting our message for each channel.

Instagram Story & Print Handout (front)

Ian’s story was captured for a news story earlier this fall, so I reached out to him again to ask him to gather a few friends for a photo shoot. We knew that his personality would shine through best if he was surrounded by close friends. Once we had great photos, it was a matter of drilling down into the elements of his story that would resonate with new college students most.

Print Handout (backside)

Instructional print pieces can feel obnoxious to a web savvy audience, but this particular sign up required multiple steps and a wait time. You can be in love with every word, but I never use eight words if seven will do; meaning that instructions should be concise and essential. We also brought over some basic content from the themed front side in order to carry the personal story through the whole piece.

Ads, Headers & Web Banners

Our hope was to echo our primary channel messages through secondary channels – student newspaper ads, email, and website images. When it comes to these mediums, less text is always better, so our focus was the call to action. These clickable ads took students to a landing page with more information about how to sign up.

Visual Style Guide

Great content and quality art direction sent this campaign to the next level. After the initial concept was developed, it was important to give future designers and content developers direction to carry the theme through other pieces.

Adapting Over Time

The mark of a great concept is when it lives beyond the subject, writer or designer. Humans want to see themselves in the stories of others. While this campaign centered on Ian, it is a concept that can be recycled and utilized again and again, because his story represents the return of connection on that engagement students crave.

Role call: Content strategy, writing and concept development by Hailee Tavoian. Design and art direction by Erika Clusman. Photography by Akira Jakkson. Strategy deployment by Chloe Ruffenach and Alexandria Polanosky. Ohio University brand developed by Truth & Consequences.


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Social Media Engagement

#OHIO6Words Social Media Campaign

Alumni engagement is measured through sustained interest, involvement and/or investment in alma mater. Social media presents an opportunity to engage with alumni with low stakes and establish cross-generational connections through shared experience.

Early submissions were printed and displayed in the student center during Homecoming Week.

The association’s goal was simple: increase engagement on Instagram. This idea was successful because we focused on the why – why would an OHIO alum care to post about us, tag us, or engage with our content? The answer for me was Homecoming. The annual celebration at OHIO is like nothing else I’ve ever seen. Bobcats show up by the thousands, a little bit for football, but mostly because of the way they feel when they are back on campus. The energy is palpable, the memories are visceral, and of course, the drinks are flowing.

I knew that if we could find a way to translate that experience even slightly to our online audiences, they would be ecstatic to go back into a Bobcat state of mind and feel part of the party.

Inspired by Ernest Hemmingway’s six-word story, the #OHIO6Words instagram campaign called for participants to share their own six-word story on Instagram, coupled with an image that represented their OHIO experience. Winners were selected each day of Homecoming Week to be featured on the main @OHIOAlumni Instagram channel and were mailed various Bobcat swag for their engagement.

The outcomes far exceeded engagement goals, and received international recognition from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE). It received the Silver Award in the category ‘Best Uses of Social Media for Alumni Relations,’ which recognizes innovative uses of new media by educational institutions across the globe.

Alumni Submissions

Role call: Concept development by Katrina Heilmeier, Kate Erlewine and Hailee Tavoian. Campaign writing by Hailee Tavoian. Social media deployment by Kate Erlewine. In-person displays by Katrina Heilmeier.


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Feature Video

Betty Bounces Back

Screen shot of the cover of Ohio Today magazine, which features Amy Meeks.
© Ohio Today magazine | Summer 2018 issue

The first lesson during a roller derby “fresh meat clinic” is how to fall.

“As a kid I remember thinking that if you fell, you were a dork,” says Amy Meeks, BSJ ’13, MA ’16. “In derby, everybody falls—it’s part of the game. How fast you get back up is what matters.”

Meeks grew up mastering roller skating in Hocking County, Ohio. The skill came in handy when she joined the region’s Appalachian Hell Betties Roller Derby Team more than 30 years later.

As a blocker, Meeks helps the scorer get past the opposition’s defense. “You need to be willing to risk going down if it means your teammate gets through,” says Meeks.

When her sister Connie showed symptoms of Polycystic Kidney Disease (PKD)—a disorder that took the lives of her mother and grandmother at young ages—it wasn’t a question of if Connie would need a kidney transplant, but when.

Without hesitation, Meeks was ready to “take the fall.” “Test me,” she said. And she was a match. “I didn’t ever really stop to think about it.”

Meeks had to make peace with the risks: the donation surgery could end her career as a Hell Betty. Yet, in the end, the sport was Meeks’ saving grace. Her “derby-fit” body provided a healthy kidney to her ailing sister and made for a productive and motivated recovery.

Meeks was back on the track just 12 weeks post-op, with a few cool scars to add to the team’s collection.

Screen shot of story above as it appears in print magazine.
© Ohio Today magazine | Summer 2018 issue

My greatest challenge with this assignment was getting Amy to come out of her shell. It was fascinating to watch her have more nerves about an interview than she had before a roller derby match – and I must admit I could not relate to that at all.

Derby was a sport I knew nothing about aside from an impression that it was quite brutal. It did not disappoint in that department, but during this project I also learned about the high bar for athleticism and grace required to be a savvy competitor. Developing an understanding of the rules was critical to my team’s ability to shoot good video, and trim it together with cohesion.

All things considered, this is a sport unlike any other when it comes to capturing quality video. It moves really quickly, there is no perfect vantage point, and try as you might to line up a pretty shot, wipe outs are frequent and you need to be able to get out of the way fast. It was a fun challenge to take on.

Role call: Written story by Hailee Tavoian. Written story edited by Kelee Riesbeck. Video storyboard, production and editing by Evann Figueroa and Hailee Tavoian. Photography by Ellee Achten.


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Narrative Video

Slam Poetry Video

This project was such a pleasure to produce. Our goal was to work with a student poet to fuse together their experience with words from iconic OHIO songs in a message of gratitude for alumni support. What resulted was beyond my expectations, thanks in large part to the tremendous talent of our subject and writer Yaphet Jackman.

Through audio challenges, script drafting, equipment limitations and a tight timeline, my small team was able to achieve our mission under budget without compromising quality. The piece was received with high praise by alumni across the globe, which prompted a screening during the Ohio University Board of Trustees meeting by special request from the University President Roderick McDavis.

Role call: Words and performance by Yaphet Jackman. Storyboard, production, and art direction by Hailee Tavoian. Editing and assistant production by Jarrett Lehman. Concept development by Jennifer Bowie and Hailee Tavoian.

“Hailee is a multifaceted titan with a humble heart of gold. My time with her has shown me her great attention to detail, reservoir of patience and her ability to remain calm and focused in high stress situations. Her kind spirit is an asset as a team player and leader.”

Yaphet Jackman, featured slam poet

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