Marketing to cost UVM $1.58 million

UVM is investing millions in a marketing makeover.


UVM will spend $1.58 million in a “new enrollment management project,” in order to make UVM more appealing, according to contracts signed in October between UVM and Philadelphia design company 160over90.


The contract with the de- sign company will last through 2018.


The project began at the beginning of summer 2015, Vice President of Enrollment Management Stacey Kostell said.


“This is an effort to use use storytelling and creative design – and the metaphor of an academic ecosystem – to put UVM’s unique advantages in sharp relief, so they stand out and break through the clutter of college admissions materials,” she said.


The University is not rebranding, because it is still promoting itself, just with a different face, Interim Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences William Falls said.


“We don’t consider this to be a ‘rebranding’ campaign, since we’ve focused on many of these same points in the past,” Kostell said.


“I think that UVM is doing the right thing with this money,” junior Drew Flaherty said. “Although many students may feel indifferent toward improvements like this, I think it is good timing.”


Flaherty said it is important to recognize how the University has developed its image over the years.


“This University has been developing in just the few recent years that I have been here and it is apparent among all of the students,” he said.


While looking at possible partners for the project, the Request for Proposals explained that the contract would include a three-month research period as well as a marketing campaign.


Prospective students and parents, alumni and other university members are among those who will be tested for branding effectiveness, the proposal stated.


The choice to hire 160over90 was decided by the University’s board of trustees during the 2014-2015 school year.