The team’s new remit has also brought on a change in their working patterns. With lots of demand for internal comms, Emily’s team have had to think more about how to use messaging efficiently. They find themselves “operating in a more optimal way. We’re looking for ways to repurpose content in different contexts across the organisation for multiple audiences…It’s quite hard to deal with the pace of things. There are so many messages going out to so many cohorts.”
Despite the rush of demand, Emily’s team has still found room to innovate on traditional models of communication; “we’re leveraging more across audiences but we’re also doing more tailored and bespoke stuff.” Much of that innovation has been powered by new technologies that can enable brand compliance across smaller messaging platforms.
“The traditional thing of having people on campus to produce high-quality video to broad audiences – now it’s much more about how you capture lo-fi content for smaller segments.”
The use of instant, lo-fi content is a trend we’re likely to see more of over the coming years. Emily explains that her team has been exploring new platforms that allow them to quickly submit requests for content with built-in scripts and brand requirements.
“I can request you, as a Dean, might record a short message to a group of students. Whereas in the past it would have been up to the marketing department to bring people together and produce some sort of high-quality film.”
This, says Emily, is the future of communications in her team. Technology is enabling new ways of closing the gap between mass broadcasting and one-to-one communication. Emily believes that “the way in which we’re doing communications also is much more agile. We’re leveraging more across audiences, but we’re also doing more tailored and bespoke comms.”
Students are constantly looking for a more authentic experience and that’s something the University of Wollongong excels at because it is at the heart of their brand. It seems that, with a bigger remit and greater access to spontaneous, lo-fi engagement platforms, the role of the communications function is expanding further than ever before.