In an effort to connect with the greater Marlborough community and articulate clearly the School’s culture and vision, the Development Office recently hired Doing Good Marketing, an organization that helps nonprofits, foundations and schools accurately convey their intentions and the importance of their work through the way they present themselves to the public. The marketing firm is in the process of hearing feedback from a variety of different groups, including students, alumnae, employees, parents and trustees, about how they perceive Marlborough, its strengths and its areas in need of improvement. The marketing team will work with the school to improve the way it portrays itself in all media, including presentations, online, brochures and more.
On Monday, Nov. 2, Head of School Priscilla Sands attended a meeting called Los Angeles School Heads (LASH) and heard the marketing firm’s president, Romayne Levee, give a presentation about her team and its work. This talk inspired Sands to hire her marketing team in order to fulfill her goal of investigating a possible new approach towards communicating about Marlborough to the public.
“I’ve worked with a lot of communication firms in my years, and I liked her because I felt that it [the company’s work] was ethical communications—that they weren’t trying to just come in and slap on a slogan and tell us how to market ourselves,” Sands said.
In addition to open-ended focus groups and roundtable discussions with students, the marketing team will begin conducting stakeholder interviews with alumnae, parents, employees and trustees, as well as an online survey for these stakeholders, to determine how the School can better represent its authentic culture. Sands and Levee said they are interested in learning about how students and faculty, as well as those outside of the School, perceive life at Marlborough and the school community.
“What are the highlights? Is there a difference between what we think we do and what the world thinks we do?” Sands mused.
After analyzing the results of these interviews, Sands and individuals she brought together as a team for this project will participate in workshops with the marketing team to work through the findings from those discussions and discuss how this new information can translate into the way Marlborough’s representatives portray the school and accurately reflect its goals and culture. This approach will include making appropriate changes to the School’s website, other publications, admissions presentations and any other material deemed necessary.
Associate Director of Communications Carly Rodriguez, who is leading the initiative internally, expressed a positive outlook on the future of the project.
“We have a pretty strong sense of what that culture is all about internally, but I think it’s really valuable periodically to talk to our community and hear what they have to say about how they see the School to make sure that we’re on target with the way that we’re talking about the School, visually and in writing,” Rodriguez said.
Levee added that her marketing team has worked with many schools and has high hopes for Marlborough.
“It’s good practice to make sure you are aware of how you’re being perceived… I think it’s great that your Head of School is trying to learn about Marlborough, and this is a great way for her to really truly understand what really makes Marlborough special,” Levee said.