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Reputation management during campus changes

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Reputation management during campus changes

Situation

As the primary source of higher ed opportunity in their northern Michigan region, Kirtland Community College has taken their responsibility of educating residents very seriously. This mission drove them to embark on massive change in a few short years, building a new campus and transitioning out of older, less effective facilities. A small but vocal group of taxpayers pushed back hard, clinging to the old campus and resisting change. Kirtland reached out to Siren for help.

Strategy

We partnered with Kirtland to launch a strategic communication effort focused on clear communication and positive news in order to improve Kirtland’s reputation with taxpayers and foster a positive environment for Kirtland’s continued growth and evolution. We got ahead of campus changes, announcing them early to avoid confusion and build trust. We published positive news about Kirtland, its students and its accomplishments, and we communicated directly with taxpayers via Facebook to mitigate any confusion or misinformation.

Results

  • Within two years Kirtland had moved through three phases of development on their new campus with little to no pushback from the community. 
  • The president of Kirtland, an innovative and people-minded leader, went from being buried in negative emails and negative social media commentary to focusing his efforts where they are needed most: forward momentum.
Client:

Kirtland Community College

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Date:

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