Fontys: ‘Content is more important than traditional marketing’
In Fontys Hogescholen’s communications strategy, the role of content is growing at a steady pace. The transition to a new newsroom enabled the broad-based college to reach a larger audience.
The largest educational organization in the southern part of the Netherlands derived its name from the word ‘Fons’, which is Latin for source. Fontys Hogescholen likes to position itself as the source of knowledge for its more than 44,000 students. The organization has an active communication policy, wanting to reach not only the students but also employees, potential students and regional professionals. “Of course we publish news articles about education, but we also write a lot about research and innovation”, says Erwin Hoeks, Press and PR consultant. In addition, student projects and activities receive regular attention.
Fontys likes to interact with its readers and maintains an active presence on social media via LinkedIn (100,000 followers), Twitter (11,000) and Facebook (10,000). “We use our online newsroom as the main source of content for both LinkedIn and Twitter”, Hoeks explains. “On Facebook we publish more light and playful news with fun videos et cetera, specifically aimed at our students.”
Within the online newsroom, developed by PressPage, about 25 to 30 articles are published per month, enriched with visual materials and other downloadable files. Before the transition to PressPage, this level of frequency was not possible. Hoeks: ”We worked with two different systems for the intranet and Internet. Articles which were meant for both, had to be published twice. Now we are able to control both our platforms from one system, and distribute the articles directly through social media. Our activity within these channels has increased enormously.”
Fontys has used the efficiency gains to publish more articles, which has since been resulting in more followers on the social channels and more visits to the newsroom. “We now think differently about how and what we want to publish”, says Hoeks. “Publishing an article used to be a burden, but with the ease of PressPage we are looking at this differently. The newsroom now plays a more important role within our communications strategy.”
Hoeks acknowledges that his team could do more to reach the full potential of the PressPage platform. “We can do a lot more with it, and we do want to make better use of these functionalities in the coming year. For example, we currently make little use of custom pages, which make it real easy to create separate environments within the newsroom. And at the moment our media library is mostly just used as storage, so there’s room for a better structure there. We don’t always make use of the automated texts our sharing buttons are able to generate, and we’re just starting to look into the calendar function.”
Content is becoming an increasingly important part of Fontys’ communications strategy. “It’s clear our approach is successful and contributes in engaging our target audiences. The newsroom plays a big part in this. Nowadays, content may be more important than traditional marketing tools like advertising and commercials; people tend to see right through those. It’s about sharing your organization’s stories, and using the right tools to do so.”
Publishing an article used to be a burden, but with the ease of PressPage we are looking at this differently. The newsroom now plays a more important role within our communications strategy.
PressPage provides a SaaS PR platform with additional services for creation of advanced social newsrooms, virtual press centers and online media hubs. It enables brands to publish and distribute rich content, and provides direct insights into the results. PressPage empowers PR professionals by adding efficiency and effectiveness to their daily work routine.