Growing a campus and enrollment in higher education
Holly Donato was Director of Publications in the Communications and Marketing Office of Bethel University for six of the institution’s most critical years. Leading a team of editors and designers, she reduced seven constituent periodicals to five while improving their content, streamlining subscriptions, and leading redesign for brand unity.
Holly also headed media relations and constituent communication through several crises, including an LGBT discrimination challenge, a racial incident, an economic downturn, and a presidential transition. For a major $109 million capital campaign, Holly developed print, web, and video assets to make the case, report progress, and recognize donors. The two-year effort was successful, growing Bethel’s endowment, and funding construction of a new student center and seminary building.
Finally, Holly developed the university’s first cross-divisional marketing materials (including a popular State Fair promotion), and worked with three admissions offices to revamp student recruitment and retention materials—everything from creative direct mail to clearer academic catalogs.
During Holly’s tenure—a challenging time for private higher education—Bethel University saw a 20 percent increase in enrollment, while maintaining donor trust.
Need: Unify, brand, grow enrollment, raise $109 million
Solution: Integrated periodicals, web content, direct mail, and events
Results: 19% growth (over six years) and campaign goal exceeded
“I appreciated the quality of Holly's work, her excellent character, and her ability to deliver a product in a timely way.”
-Dr. Jay Barnes, President, Bethel University