Higher Education

Inseparable: College Recruitment and Retention

Photo Credit: Nimble Photography

Admissions marketing needs to promote retention initiatives early and often. And, that’s true for initiatives that support students’ overall well-being, not just academic success. A trifecta of recent surveys got me thinking about this.

Students thinking about withdrawal. The College Confidence Index from Allianz surveyed current and prospective college students. More than half of prospective students (55 percent) are already wondering if they’ll need to temporarily withdraw once in college. Meanwhile, 43 percent of current students say that they’ve thought about withdrawing. Why? Family emergency (69 percent), stress (66 percent) or mental health condition (66 percent) were the top reasons.

Existing retention initiatives on campus. Inside Higher Ed conducted its annual survey of chief business officers. Most respondents’ institutions have invested in retention initiatives. Of those who’ve invested, 86 percent did so with “the clear expectation that higher student retention and degree completion would improve financial stability.” The types of initiatives cited were primarily academic: clearly designed pathways for degrees (83 percent), academic coaching (78 percent), training for faculty (74 percent), peer mentoring (66 percent) and technology-enabled advising (58 percent).

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Employee Engagement

Two Interns’ Views on Getting Engaged… No, We’re Not Talking About Marriage

Note: This post was co-authored by Padilla interns Kayla McMahon and Megan Finkbeiner

We’re Kayla and Megan, two interns in Padilla’s Richmond office. We joined Padilla in the beginning of June as newbies to the working world, and recently attended an employee engagement briefing, presented by Gallup, called: “The Competitive Advantage of Engaging Your Employees.” We learned the importance of employee engagement and found that our own workplace expectations aligned with several of Gallup’s findings.

Below, we’ve listed our thoughts on four key takeaways from the briefing to give you a peek into the mind of a job-hunting millennial.

1) Workplace expectations are changing from valuing a paycheck to feeling a sense of purpose.

Source: gethppy.com

Megan: The seminar began with a simple question: “What makes a good job?” The responses were as expected — communication, room for growth, transparency, stability, etc. After sharing our answers, one attendee made a point that ultimately set the stage for the rest of the briefing: not one person mentioned salary or benefits. According to the Gallup rep who led the briefing, this isn’t a rare finding among…

PR Industry Trends

How to Become a Smarter Consumer of Nutrition Information

We are constantly being inundated with information about what we should or shouldn’t be eating to look and feel our best. It seems that every time I am on the playground I pick up on a conversation discussing the latest program that requires complete elimination of entire food groups for a month. And, just last night, I counted 11 documentaries on Netflix related to food, nutrition and health. How do you know what to believe?

The International Food Information Council Foundation (IFIC) recently conducted its 12th Annual Food and Health survey. The survey revealed that eight in 10 (78 percent) of respondents say that they encounter a lot of conflicting information about what to eat/avoid. More than half of those respondents (56 percent) say the conflicting information makes them doubt the choices they make. About one in four consumers (28 percent) say they rely on friends and family for nutrition and food safety information, which tops other sources including conversations with registered dietitians, health-focused websites, and the news.

I conducted an informal survey of my co-workers in the New York office and across the Food + Beverage Practice here at…

Investor Relations

M&A Communications – The Risk-Management Role of Corporate Communications

According to Pitchbook, 2017 is shaping up to be a record year in terms of capital invested in mergers and acquisitions – the events that recast companies, industries, employee and customer and investor expectations, – even brand identities. Mergers, acquisitions and divestitures are quintessential change-management events and some of the most challenging communications scenarios in the corporate lifecycle.

The moment a transaction is announced, risk is created (a lot of it), uncertainty is introduced, strategic rationale is scrutinized, first impressions are cemented and corporate culture and brand identity get ambiguous. To be clear, I am talking about strategic deals – transactions that fundamentally reshape the character of a company, rather than smaller “bolt-on” transactions. If you work for a public company, the sheer visibility of a major transaction makes all of this more intense. Ask a Whole Foods employee, vendor partner or investor how they felt when they learned about Amazon’s takeover bid. “Did that just actually happen?” might have been a first reaction.

Through our investor and corporate relations work, we’ve led many clients through many transformative transactions and the role corporate communications plays is always an intriguing variable. M&A transactions are devised by top management, a…

Digital Marketing

Everything You Need to Know About Snapchat TV

Gone are the days of only using Snapchat to send embarrassing photos/videos to friends (that you hope disappear faster than they can screenshot them.) Now the platform is stepping up to prove its relevancy and expand capabilities in hopes of keeping users entertained and engaged in an increasingly competitive landscape.

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Snapchat’s “shows” have existed on the platform for just over a year and allow TV networks and news outlets to condense long-form broadcast/print news into short-form videos streamed directly in the app. According to a Snap Inc. spokeswoman, “shows are an extension of traditional TV, not a replacement for it. Shows can help TV networks reach a new audience who many not be watching their linear programs. Building a core, loyal audience for our TV partners is critical to building their brand equity and a long-term, sustainable model for producing mobile TV.”

If you aren’t a Snapchat user, or haven’t yet discovered these “shows”, listen up, because this is where you can get up to speed on the latest innovations with this not-just-social network.

  • Snapchat shows are meant to be short-form videos that cater to smaller attention spans