It’s been a little over a year since SFU’s 50th anniversary, marking an important milestone for the university and its students. Since the festivities came to an end, there have been some exciting ventures to improve the university’s digital presence. The Peak spoke to a few members of the University Communications department about SFU’s 50th anniversary and digital strategy.
“We certainly saw a lot of students sharing their SFU and SFU50 experience[s] online during the year,” said Adam Brayford, assistant director of digital strategy. “The campaign generated approximately 700 conversations related to SFU50,” he said, referring to the campaign’s official hashtag.
Students and various SFU clubs have also been asked to take over the Snapchat account
Brayford also mentioned that the goal of the anniversary was “communication around the student’s experience and to help build campus pride during the year.” His team has worked with student ambassadors on an initiative to inspire online conversations around SFU, and this has continued through social media after the campaign was over.
The outcome of the anniversary was a series of collaborations between SFU and current students. Brayford noted that the stories shared as a result of the campaign were “really authentic,” adding that these stories could be a positive introduction to the university for prospective students.
Another step in SFU’s new digital strategy is an update of their official website. Many of the new elements are designed to be “user-centred,” according Denise Leech, director of digital engagement for the school’s University Communications. The updates are meant to increase ease of navigation, including interactive videos and bold infographics.
SFU also launched its own Snapchat account, to record many more student stories and events throughout the year. Leech noted how “social media communities have grown” at SFU, and that the university has seen a steady growth in traffic on many social media platforms since the launch. She added, “it’s a great opportunity for us to hand the keys over to students to let them tell their own stories.”
Students and various SFU clubs have also been asked to take over the Snapchat account where students may curate “a day in the life of a co-op student,” or places to look out for on campus.
Brayford explaining that his team plans to work with different faculties to feature various programs through SFU’s Snapchat in the near future.