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Assessment & Benchmarking

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Management Checklist for Communications and Marketing
The CASE Management Checklist for Communications and Marketing was created in 2007 by the CASE Commission on Communications and Marketing and modeled after a development checklist created by the Commission on Philanthropy. It is intended to help managers conduct internal self-assessments of information and programs and is not intended for use by external regulators or auditors. The checklist may be useful to both new and experienced managers as they assess their programs and may also be helpful in staff training and orientation. The checklist is intended to be inclusive but not exhaustive, and not all items may apply to every institution.

Findings from the 2015 CASE Educational Communications and Marketing Trends Survey
White Paper The second, biennial survey of C&M trends benchmarks the investments and staffing in communications and marketing at independent schools, colleges and universities around the world. This white paper reports on the study's results, gathered in 2015 from 458 responses, by institution type and public/private status, enrollment size and geographic region. It also reports on the strategies and tactics used across key audiences, as well as key findings on C&M management and structures, budgetary support and the challenges and opportunities faced by C&M professionals.

From Evolution to Revolution: Findings from the Inaugural CASE Educational Communications and Marketing Trends Survey
White Paper The inaugural C&M trends survey benchmarked investments and staffing in communications and marketing at independent schools, colleges and universities around the world. This white paper reports on the study’s results, gathered in 2013 from 318 responses, by institution type, enrollment size and geographic region. It also reports on the strategies and tactics used across audiences, as well as key findings on C&M management and structures, and the challenges and opportunities faced by C&M professionals.

Social Standing
CURRENTS Article Highlights from the fifth annual CASE/Huron Education/mStoner social media survey of nearly 2,000 CASE members, conducted in January 2014

The Power of Print
CURRENTS Article Institutional magazines are expensive to produce and many colleges and universities are exploring producing an online-only product. This article explores how Virginia Tech faced this issue.

Proving Your Success
CURRENTS Article This article looks at how communications and marketing professionals are measuring the effectiveness of their work, their efforts to track outcomes and tie them to the institution's strategic goals, and the challenges of demonstrating and communicating return on investment in communications and marketing. It includes a discussion of how some communications professionals are beginning to apply the Barcelona Principles, a set of seven guidelines established in 2010 by a partnership of five major international public relations industry associations to establish unified benchmarks for PR measurement.

Measuring the Impact of Social Media
Podcast Listen to Patrick Powers from Webster University explain why measurements—such as the number of "likes" a Facebook page has—don't mean very much on their own without other statistics. Also, hear why he believes every institution should perform a regular analysis of the content being promoted via its social media outlets.

Benchmarking Investments in Advancement: Results of the Inaugural CASE Advancement Investment Metrics Study
White Paper The Advancement Investment Metrics Study, or AIMS, benchmarked investments and staffing in each of the advancement disciplines (advancement services, alumni relations, communications and marketing, fundraising, and advancement management) as well as the return on the investment in fundraising specifically. This CASE white paper reports on the study's results by institution type, campaign status and other factors. The formulas and definitions used in the study are also included.

Benchmarking Campus Communications and Marketing Programs: A Look at Policies, Structures, Tools and Audiences
White Paper The University of Florida established a Strategic Communications Planning Committee in May 2009 to coordinate a campuswide effort to promote strategic communications planning, strengthen the university's brand, unify key themes and messages, maximize use of available research and resources, and identify and propagate best practices and cost-effective communications strategies. As part of the effort, UF partnered with CASE to promote and distribute a benchmarking survey. This CASE white paper reports on the high-level findings of the UF/CASE survey.

Marketing Spending at Colleges and Universities 2010
White Paper This white paper reports the 2010 results of a recurring survey on trends in communications and marketing spending at colleges and universities. Conducted by Lipman Hearne in collaboration with CASE, the paper looks at the percentage of the communications and marketing budget spent on various tactics, the perceived effectiveness of tactics, trends in spending, and the impact of the economic downturn on the investment in institutional communications and marketing.

A Snapshot of K-12 Marketing Spending
Report This one-page snapshot reports the results of a 2010 survey of communications and marketing spending by independent schools. The survey of 74 institutions was conducted by Lipman Hearne in collaboration with CASE.

How to Make Your Online Magazine Click
Article,  BriefCASE Article In a December CASE Online Speaker Series titled “100 College Online Magazines,” Brenda Foster and Katie Pugh of GCF Marketing Communications for Education reported on the results of a survey of digital editions of university and alumni magazines. Their survey looked at 100 different online magazines to find common trends and formats.

CASE Benchmarking Toolkit
The CASE Benchmarking Toolkit is a state-of-the-art survey tool that helps advancement professionals benchmark activities, staffing, budgets and other aspects of their programs with peer institutions. The toolkit allows peer communities of practice to design and conduct their own surveys, review results and instantly download charts directly into reports. The toolkit is available to advancement services, alumni relations, communications, fundraising, marketing or related professionals at CASE member institutions.

Study Explores Communications Characteristics of Top Institutions
Article,  BriefCASE Article Communications and marketing offices at the world’s top universities employ integrated strategies to reach stakeholders.

PR's Dirty Secret
CURRENTS Article As budgets get tighter and the "accountability" word gets tossed around more freely, campus PR shops are reminded that they need to find better ways to stay relevant. And so the age-old conversation of measurement bubbles up again. In this article, the author addresses the measurement conversation and argues that what PR/media pros do is indeed measurable. He posits that if campus PR pros are to be meaningful contributors to the strategic direction of their campuses and are to demonstrate how PR done right can impact the bottom line, they need to embrace a set of metrics. Big clip books and ad values are impressive in girth, he says, but don't help make the case that what PR pros do is either measurable or strategic. He offers advice and strategies for measuring what matters and includes examples from his campus.

Data to Benchmark By
CURRENTS Article A survey of more than 400 campus news departments reveals that many suffer from low staffing levels, outdated mailing-list technology, and a mismatch between budget priorities and mission statements.

The Accountability Game
CURRENTS Article Mahoney describes a model by which public relations officers can determine quantitative measures for evaluating PR activities. The model blends evaluation with strategic planning by measuring public relations activities against larger program goals. It follows four basic steps: 1) Identify your office's programs, components, and activities. 2) Categorize activities according to standard PR tasks. 3) Select a goal and measurement tools for evaluating each type of task. 4) Measure the activities and analyze the results. Accompanying charts show how Mahoney has applied this model at Australian National University.

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