Campus Communications Boot Camp

Leveraging Media Relations and Social Media

Half-day or full-day interactive workshop

The campus is a community of stakeholders, and effective internal communications, media relations, and social media management are essential to ensure that faculty and staff, students, prospective students, alumni and the general public are kept informed and engaged in the mission of the institution. Most colleges and universities have dozens or even hundreds of potential spokespeople or media contacts, and thousands or tens of thousands of voices active in social media. Effective strategies and tactics can coordinate and leverage all those voices, build an institutional brand, manage a crisis, and spread the word cost-effectively. How do campus stakeholders stay informed?  Who speaks to the media in an emergency?  What makes a story newsworthy?  How does something go viral in a good way?  What does it take to manage a media crisis effectively?  This workshop will address these questions and more.

Ken is a lively and engaging presenter who brings his material to life through anecdote and compelling visuals. More than that, though, he is an evangelist for university communications and a subject matter expert.

Richard Fisher, Chief Communications Officer, Development & Alumni Engagement, UBC

Ken Steele is Canada’s leading higher education monitor and futurist. After an award-winning career in marketing, he co-founded Academica Group, created the Academica Top Ten, manages Eduvation Inc, co-authored Canada’s first book on enrolment management, and hosts a weekly webcast, Ten with Ken, that reaches thousands of subscribers on a dozen platforms. Ken brings his unique perspective and insight to a broad range of audiences, from faculty and instructors, boards and senior administration, to information technology staff, concerned parents, and Canada’s most powerful corporate CEOs.

This workshop will draw on Ken’s years of research data, hundreds of examples, and scores of consulting projects assessing optimal staffing and structure for campus marketing and communications, effective brand messaging and media relations strategies and tactics. Marketing and communications professionals will find his examples stimulating and thought-provoking, while potential spokespeople will come to appreciate the keys to effective media relations and the advantages of central coordination and support. All participants will gain insight and experience from the best practices and missteps of others. (Ken will schedule a one-hour call in advance to focus the content and objectives of the workshop for optimal impact.)

Ideal Audiences

  • Marketing Communications leadership and front-line staff
  • External Relations leadership and front-line staff
  • Communications Committees
  • Executive Teams
  • Deans & Directors

Optional Extras

  • You could schedule this as a full-day or a half-day workshop.
  • You might consider 2 or 3 presentations, possibly for a variety of audiences, drawn from Ken’s hot topics.

Related Resources:

These articles and white papers reflect some of Ken’s ideas, and could potentially be used as pre-reading for workshop participants:



Here are some relevant episodes of 10K, for a sense of Ken’s approach and as potential examples to share with participants in advance:



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