Sometimes technology just gets in your way – at least it did when I sat down and tried to record an interview with mStoner’s Director of Marketing, Mallory Wood. I tried to make it work, but eventually, I tired of trying to match video and spotty audio together like puzzle pieces. Instead, here’s a post about our conversation…
Mallory Wood works as director of marketing for mStoner, a marketing and communications agency that works with higher education institutions – about 250 all told over the company’s history. Some of these institutions are large, with grand teams, but a lot of them are smaller, Mallory said, with small teams or solo practitioners in charge of various pieces of the communication puzzle.
“We do web design, content strategy, print; we’re a full service agency,” she added. “We can take a project from strategy to completion or do a part of that.”
mStoner works with a mix of small and large teams, but Mallory said those who work for the company get extra satisfaction from helping out armies of one.
“It is exactly when the army of one is overwhelmed with developing content and strategy or saying to themselves, ‘I have suddenly gotten social media thrown onto my plate… and I’m in the middle of developing content for print and the web and I don’t know what to do. I’m not trained in this; I don’t have a good strategy,” she said. “That’s when they might send me an email or pick up the phone and say, ‘Mallory, how can mStoner help us?’”
We discussed challenges that the solo practitioner faces every day – as a vendor sees them. Mallory listed a few that we can all agree with – time and knowledge.
“There are a lot of limitations – the biggest is time,” she said. “There are only so many hours in the day. Yes, we hustle and get it done. But at some point you have to maintain a work-life balance. Knowledge is another limitation. There are lots of resources out there that can help with that.”
And although the company makes its bread and butter advising clients, mStoner provides a wealth of free resources for the higher education community. Mallory helps out with a number of those resources:
EDUniverse – A hub for content and information that was launched in 2012 to serve as an open community for higher education. Of EDUniverse, Mallory said:
We saw that a lot of new bloggers coming into the higher ed space. All of a sudden, you have all these blogs and content, and they’re all great. We wanted EDUniverse to act as a hub for all the information that pulls together the best ideas on the web in higher ed. We merged last year with Higher Ed Live and hope to merge the two sites completely by the end of the year.
Webinars – mStoner has definitely rolled out the free webinar resources in the past year and a half, and the company has no plans to change that in 2013, Mallory said. Watch the company’s blog or get on its email list for more information.
mStoner has a dedication to providing free resources and thought leadership for those colleagues who work with higher education. We’ve made a commitment to truly just offering content – just information. We don’t do a hard sell or cold call after the webinar. In 2013, we’re planning on offering 20 or more webinars – some on content strategy from different angles,on responsive web design, SEO and analytics, etc.
Social Works – mStoner’s first book features case studies on social media projects in higher education. Mallory said the company plans to extend the book’s reach by offering a series of webinars on some of the case studies. Those will be available to folks who buy the book.