Advertising Plan for the University

Advertising Plan for the University of Illinois at Springfield BU 446-8: Advertising Renee A. Tesch April 18, 2010 I. Executive Summary This is the first comprehensive advertising plan for the University of Illinois at Springfield [ (UIS Strategic Plan, 2006) ] since 1992, when we were still known as Sangamon State University [ (UIS Strategic Plan, 2006) ]. The UIS has been part of the University of Illinois for 10 years, and it is time for fresh planning, new thinking and “Stretch Ideas” to move them well beyond what they have been and to lead them well into this century [ (UIS Strategic Plan, 2006) ].

This advertising plan will cover the topic of how the UIS strives for excellence in all endeavors [ (UIS Strategic Plan, 2006) ]. In this advertising plan for UIS, the following sections will be covered: A.

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Situation Analysis B. Key Planning Decisions 1. Target Audience 2. Competitive Product Advantage 3. Product Image & Personality 4.

Product Position II. Situation Analysis In order for the UIS to be recognized as one of the top five small public liberal arts universities in the United States, a SWOT analysis should be conducted. Strengths-

Locations- UIS is located on the Southeast side of Springfield, Illinois near Lake Springfield. With Springfield being the capital of Illinois, and also the home of Abraham Lincoln- our nation’s 16th president, offers a variety of activities ; opportunities for the students of UIS. To make transportation easy, there is a regular bus service provided from the UIS campus to the mall, downtown area, and to other points around the city. Class Size- UIS has small class sizes, (a student-professor ratio averages 15:1) and because of that the professors know their students-not just their ames but their strengths ; their goals.

UIS Admissions- Student enrollment in 2007-2008 was 4,855. With the competitive analysis with other public ; private UIS has some of the most prized attributes of small colleges-small class sizes, high-quality programs, for more affordable than other private institutions. Reputation-Not only does UIS have a great reputation with their students, but also with the local community as well. UIS has been known to provide students with the knowledge, skills, ; experience that lead to productive careers. Weaknesses-

Tuition- Because of the historically low tuition, accompanied by funding cuts in the past three years, UIS has not been able to develop operating reserves.

The absence of these reserves means that UIS has very little budgetary flexibility ; limited capacity to undertake new initiatives within their current limitation on resources. Opportunities- Clubs/ Activities- UIS has 75+ student organizations that the students can explore. UIS also has nine intercollegiate sports, theatre ; music departments and many more. The new rec. center, 47,000 sq. feet, houses recreation, fitness, and indoor athletic events at UIS.

Capital Scholars Honors Program- The mission of the UIS Capital Scholars Honors Program is to provide a challenging interdisciplinary, educational experience in which well-qualified, motivated students gain understanding and leadership skills to engage in the world. Threats- Competition- The major competitors for on-campus programs are: Illinois State University, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, Western Illinois University, Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, Eastern Illinois University, Illinois College, Northern Illinois University, Bradley, and McKendree.

The major competitors for online programs are: University of Phoenix Online, University of Maryland University College, SUNY Learning Network, Arizona Universities Network, UMass Online, Michigan State, Penn State World Campus, Stanford, University of Texas System, and University of Wisconsin Extension. III. Key Planning Decisions To increase enrollment at UIS, there are a few things to consider when deciding on the right advertising approach to take.

Environmental forces impacting the UIS include demographic, educational, economic/fiscal, economic development and research, and political factors and trends.

Always keep in mind that every person is different and have different goals. When advertising a college/university, you want to make sure that everyone knows about where your college is located and know how to get there. The one big issue that seems to get in the way is the tuition. There may be people who are really interested in your college, but not sure if they can afford it. To help with this situation, make sure you let them know that financial aide is available.

An ultimate goal for UIS is to let potential people know about all the benefits that UIS has to offer.

Of course, it’s every college’s wish to increase enrollment. If the advertising is successful, hopefully it will make a positive impression on future students and will want to enroll at UIS. Try not to forget about the existing students that are already enrolled at UIS, you need to make an impression on them as well so that they re-enroll the following year. With the high concern of staying healthy and exercising, it would be beneficial for UIS to advertise their new rec center.

This $16 million, 47,000 sq. ft. building is a great way to perk someone’s curiosity and that maybe they would make an appointment to check it out.

Target Audience- UIS’s main target audience is the parent’s of high school students, adults wanting to continue their education, and existing students. Targeting high schools with all the information about the university could be a positive impact on the university’s enrollment.

From there, maybe the advertising would reach other colleges/universities so that if there were students wanting a change, or want something smaller. Advertising all over the United States is sure to get a few students who may be interested in the UIS. Competitive Product Advantage UIS offers a small campus atmosphere.

The teacher/student ratio is 15:1. Because of the small class size, whenever a student needs help, a teacher is always available. The teachers at UIS are available anytime, day or night, they are always willing to help.

Product Image ; Personality One big influence that could affect potential students, either positively or negatively is the university’s image. You always want to make sure that you have control over that image. With the UIS involved with the local community and have combined activities with them, is another positive reinforcement to recruit potential students. Product Position

People know the UIS as a small private campus with lots of opportunities to grow and succeed. You want students of UIS to say nothing but positive things about the university.

Again, with the university located in the state’s capital is a very appealing characteristic of UIS. The university is located right along Lake Springfield and is easily accessible from Interstate 55, which runs in a north-south direction through Illinois.