Episode 50: Marketing Higher Education with Dave Murphy

On Episode 50 of Brandstorm, Hosts Dan Trzinski and Nancy Christopher discuss the role of marketing in higher education with Dave Murphy, vice president of marketing and communication at a prominent Jesuit School, Marquette University, in Milwaukee.

Getting to Marquette University

Dave Murphy discusses how his initial interest in a media career led him to the world of marketing and advertising. After completing a degree in Mass Communication, Dave worked at a local radio and TV station. When the opportunity arose to join a small, boutique ad agency, Dave hopped onboard. During his 25 years at the agency, Dave held many positions, eventually attaining the role of Creative Director and later, Partner.

Dave’s extensive agency experience led him to an opportunity to work in education as the Senior Brand Marketing Director at Marquette. Five years later, Dave was promoted to Vice President of Marketing and Communications, where he currently oversees the university’s branding, marketing, and communication initiatives that impact academic reputation, enrollment, fundraising and alumni relations.

Finding Marquette’s Audience

Dave tells us the intricacies of marketing to students. We learn how both digital and traditional marketing materials need to be used to reach prospective students, as well as the importance of providing a positive experience to prospective students while touring the Marquette campus. Dave says his department must adapt to the changing landscape of higher-education, while understanding and using technology as a delivery mechanism.

Competition in Higher Education

How does Marquette’s status as a premiere Jesuit School attract students? Dave describes how Marquette’s brand identity is carefully curated to appeal to students in the region as well as across the nation. Dave also says Marquette’s athletic reputation creates a unique advantage when marketing to prospective students.

Client Side vs. Agency Side Differences

Dave describes how professional life inside Marquette University differs from that of the advertising agency side. We learn how Marquette’s news presence is managed and promoted and how to make the best use of marketing university events. Dave also “grades” advertising agencies a “grade,” describing what they do well and what needs improvement.

Connect with Dave Murphy

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dave-murphy-521a535/

Email: david.murphy@marquette.edu

Phone: (414) 288-4810