With the level of student debt in the US nearing 1.6 trillion dollars, the College Money Matters organization was formed to take on a unique mission: educating today’s high school seniors and their families on how to pay for college without incurring more debt than they can handle.The non-profit organization had spent three years conducting research to learn what today’s college-bound students not only needed to know about financing college, but also how they’d like to learn about it. They then turned to Create & Associates to develop a new website and accompanying digital marketing and social media program. The goal: to drive the target audience of students, families and high school counselors to the site, keep them interested, and continuously increase reach and awareness.
Starting from scratch, and working in close collaboration with the client, the Create & Associates team planned the content strategy, mapped out the navigation, designed the brand look and identity, and created a host of branded illustrations, animated videos, informative articles, interactive games, fun quizzes and entertaining presentations to deliver the important messages and vital information that College Money Matters knew its audience needed to learn.The resulting site, collegemoneymatters.org, is a comprehensive, easy-to-understand and engaging experience. It was built in Wordpress™ to allow for easy growth and hands-on management by the client or creative team whenever new content needs to be developed and implemented. In addition, Create & Associates is responsible for the social media campaign designed to support the site. The team plans, develop, illustrates and posts an ongoing series of messages, videos and advertising on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, along with e-mail marketing to school administrators, college counselors and potential donors and supporters.
Within the first three weeks of its launch, the site had welcomed 1,075 visitors and achieved over 3,000 views on social media. It has generated a great number of positive comments and reviews from students, and is quickly gaining traction among high school guidance counselors in several local test markets. The site’s value has also been recognized by notable influencers in the public service sector, as shown by this comment from Rachel Estroff, the Chief of Staff for the Office of New York State Senator, Shelly Mayer
I am reaching out from YWCA Spokane to let you know that our team has been in awh of your annual report. It is beautiful and powerful and engaging! Can you share with me what tool you used to create such a dynamic presentation?
The way the website organized is simple but effective. It’s very easy to navigate; I found no problems while looking through it. Also, the videos are super helpful. I also greatly appreciate how accessible the site is. The accessibility widget doesn’t impact me personally, but I’m sure those who need it greatly appreciate it. Overall, I think this is a really useful resource to have. I’ll definitely show it to my friends and spread it as much as I can. Thank you for showing it to me!
“If only I had access to something like this when I was in high school, I wouldn’t be in the debt situation I’m in now. All my guidance counselor told me was I wouldn't get into the school I ended up at instead of offering resources to not only help get into college but make sure we had all the information we need to pay for it. My parents did their best, but they really didn’t know either.”
What a fabulous resource the website is and how exciting that it is launched now! Thank you for sharing. In my financial planning practice, I talk with parents about college funding for their children, so the website link is being saved just for that purpose. Can’t wait to check it out in greater detail.
Your site hits the mark for us in so many ways -- it helps people achieve financial wellness, its's philanthropic and it was created by you???? And mostly, it's a really terrific site. I mentioned that I really enjoyed reading and watching your videos, and I plan to spend even more time on it as I move through the next couple of years.
...this is amazing!!! So user friendly and engaging and informative!!! Congratulations!!
I looked at the website and it looks fantastic! Really easy interface to use and loaded with great information. I was looking at the leadership team and its looks like a really talented group. Congratulations on the launch, all those meetings and hours of work have paid off! I will certainly be using this with some of my clients in the future.
What an amazing website! It's really helpful to have all of the financial information for college organized on one website. It's been such a headache to browse the dozens of sources on the internet for information on scholarships, FAFSA, etc. Now, I can find all of that information in one place. I read the scholarship information and the loans information and took the quizzes for both. It was so interesting to read and really easy to understand. I'll send this to my brother (who knows a lot more kids in the high school than I do), and I'm sure that it'll be a great tool for many of my peers during their college search.