Q&A with Yael Branscom: LeBow's Words I Live By Campaign

Yael Branscom

The LeBow College of Business has enjoyed serious momentum in the last decade, including the current construction of the new academic center on Market Street, and earning top rankings in publications such as U.S. News, Financial Times and Princeton Review. LeBow is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business-- an honor bestowed upon only one-fourth of U.S. business schools. DrexelNow spoke with Yael Branscom, assistant director of marketing at LeBow, to discuss the college’s Words I Live By advertising campaign, which captures the dynamic, entrepreneurial spirit of LeBow—and won a 2012 Silver CUPPIE award from CUPRAP, an association of communicators in higher education.

How was the campaign developed?

The campaign started in March of 2011. What initially inspired a new advertising tactic was that the MBA curriculum was revised. We thought a new ad campaign would draw attention to that. We also wanted to embody the Drexel personality. Education is an experience, so what we use to promote ourselves should be about the experiential—just like everything else at Drexel.

What inspired the specific messaging—Words I Live By—in this campaign?

 We knew we wanted it to be real—real stories, real people.  Drexel’s brand is all about “pragmatic sophistication” and we wanted to convey the personality traits of LeBow alumni: by telling our graduates’ stories. Readers can identify with these personalities. We also wanted to tie in the Drexel LIVE IT tagline, so Words I Live By brought it all together. It clicked.

Who developed the campaign?

Most of it was done in-house by a LeBow writer, designer, videographer and web developer.

Is it working?

We think so. During the campaign’s first year we saw a 20 percent increase in inquiries, and we enrolled the largest intake of new graduate students since 2003.

Do you have a favorite Words I Live By advertisement?

Yes, one of the featured alumni is Josh Batushansky. I know him personally and his words to live by truly embody who he is. But really, all of the people appearing in the campaign have interesting stories of how they are successful and how their Drexel LeBow MBA has helped shape them and their career.

Interested in crafting your own Words I Live By advertisement? Visit www.lebow.drexel.edu/Landings/words/1 to create your own ad and have a chance to be featured on a real LeBow advertisement. Need some inspiration? Visit www.lebow.drexel.edu/Prospects/MBA/index.php?bio=chuck to read the stories of alumni currently featured on LeBow ads.