Crafting the Homecoming Spirit
So now that orientation is over and rush weeks/weekends are coming to a close, you may be asking yourself what is next on campus? Well for those of you that don’t know campuses across the country are gearing up for their homecoming weekends! A time like no other on campus where students, faculty, staff, alumni, and families gather all together to celebrate the pride and spirit of their respected schools! Homecoming is a big deal for many campuses and it is a time where those in charge want it to be truly special, but some struggle to do so. Over recent years we have seen this struggle increase and grow among many campuses for many different reasons. It was with this realization we wanted to share some advice we have heard and seen from campuses whose homecoming is truly iconic! To begin the transformation into a memorable and iconic homecoming weekend, the first thing we have noticed about the campuses with high success is the branding of their weekends theme or campaign. Schools with a very vibrant weekend don’t just host a regular homecoming weekend they host a “Throwback Homecoming” or a “Bleed Purple Homecoming.” From this they then host the events in coordination with their theme. What this does is cultivate another aspect of unity among the different populations attending the weekends events. Another reoccurring aspect of successful homecomings is the unity we see among campuses with large crowds and vibrant spirits! Schools that host these successful weekends have done and amazing job of crafting unity among not just the students, but the faculty, staff, and Alumni as well. These schools, just like you will need too, recognize just hosting a homecoming weekend doesn’t generate high unity. It’s about focusing on something that everyone can relate to and incorporating that in your marketing, events, and conversations. For many it is about the opposing team your football team will be facing and you can plaster the school with marketing that emphasizes the importance of the game. It gives everyone a common goal and in this case enemy to defeat. The last successful common aspect we have seen among the successful is that these schools recognize the importance of marketing in various formats and doing so early. These schools not just post about homecoming or hang flyers, but will send out street crews to talk about it, release their campaign theme early, and spread the homecoming vibes throughout the campus with different marketing tactics to reach every population. Some say doing less does more, but that is certainly not the case with homecoming. The schools that do more clearly have the greater turnout, the greater spirit, and the greater unity among all populations. So we encourage you to use our advice and learn from those with successful weekends and do more!