Moving from a Degree-Centric Postsecondary System to an Incremental Credentialing System: What Happens to Learners’ Financing Options?

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Building a Communications and Marketing Strategy in a State or Institution for Incremental Credentialing

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Step 3: Prioritize and Select Communications and Marketing Channels

Five-Step Approach

Step 3: Prioritize and Select Communications and Marketing Channels

Getting the word out effectively about your incremental credentialing initiatives will require both communications and marketing. Here are key channels (delivery methods) commonly used to get the word out about a state’s or an institution’s strategy on incremental credentialing:

  • Governors may promote changes in their state’s credentialing system through speeches, announcements, and face-to-face meetings
  • Speeches by state and institution leaders calling for changes are vital— particularly calls for new legislation and for specific actions that convey the scale and scope of the changes needed
  • Focused agenda items on state and institutional board and agency meetings
  • Legislative and state agency policy setting and dissemination
  • Campaign (might be an ad campaign that markets innovations in curriculum or a direct mail campaign to students — especially former students who left with some college but no credential who might benefit from a new array of incremental credentials)
  • Websites and digital platforms (state websites typically report approval of new programs). (See example below of Statewide Websites/Platforms)
  • Employers’ presentations and trade newsletters
  • Social media and traditional news media
  • State-level data systems that include incremental credentials
  • Institution-wide approaches to verifying incremental credentials on college transcripts
  • Podcasts
  • Posters/fliers/brochures featuring messages and new credentialing programs

Communications along multiple channels can garner state- and institution-wide attention and will be needed to build awareness of the changes needed—and underway—in credentialing. Remember that some channels are internal, some are external, and some channels reach both internal and external audiences.

Digital channels are becoming increasingly popular as they are typically quicker and more convenient than traditional methods. They also allow for a greater degree of flexibility, as they can be used from any location and at any time. Digital channels often provide a more personal touch than traditional methods, as they allow for the use of images, videos, and other rich media. There are nearly 20 modern digital communication channels. Some are used primarily within organizations like higher education institutions, and some enable messaging to broader, external audiences such as learners and their families.

  • Instant Messaging apps allow users to send text messages in real-time
  • Video calling apps allow users to make voice and video calls from any location
  • Voice calling apps allow users to make voice calls from any location
  • Email is a digital communication channel that allows users to send and receive messages
  • Webinars are digital events that allow a large number of people to attend remotely
  • Online courses are a type of digital communication that allows users to learn new skills from any location
  • Podcasts are a type of digital communication that allows users to listen to audio content from any location
  • Web conferencing platforms allow users to host and attend online meetings
  • Screen sharing apps allow users to share their screens with other users in real-time
  • VoIP (Voice over IP) allows users to make voice calls over the internet
  • Cloud communication platforms allow users to manage their communications from the cloud
  • Unified communications platforms allow users to manage all of their communications from one central platform
  • Collaboration tools allow users to work together on projects in real-time
  • Project management tools allow users to track and manage projects from any location
  • Online communities allow users to connect with others who share similar interests
  • Gamification uses game-like elements, such as points and badges, to engage and motivate users
  • Augmented reality (AR) overlays digital content in the real world
  • Virtual reality (VR) creates a simulated environment
  • Wearables such as smartwatches and fitness trackers allows users to access information and interact with applications from their wrists

 

Example of a Statewide Website Communicating the Availability of a Statewide Platform for Microcredentials and Marketing Microcredentials in New York

*Find a Microcredential at SUNY

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