Purdue Global Unveils ‘This Is My Comeback’ Strategy at Ad Age Event

As we approach the Ad Age’s Business of Brands event on November 8-9, Purdue Global, the online university designed for working adults, is gearing up to present its new marketing strategy. The university’s Chief Marketing Officer, Ethan Braden and Kati Pratt, executive director of brand and marketing strategy, are set to share their insights on how Purdue Global has leveraged data-driven insights to launch its latest brand and marketing platform, “This Is My Comeback.”

Purdue Global is one of the co-presenting sponsors of the event, which will feature 16 sessions led by marketing leaders from an array of industries including Major League Soccer, the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, SAP, Colgate-Palmolive, Moderna, Keurig Dr Pepper and others. These sessions will delve into how the business of brands is evolving, with a focus on the catalysts, disruptions and innovations shaping today’s brands.

The Purdue Global team has been on a remarkable journey over the past 18 months. As Pratt explains, “Purdue Global is built for working adults. We see value in what they bring to the table and how they want to take the next step for themselves. Purdue Global is about providing real opportunity and opening doors for more students.”

The university’s comeback started with conversations among Braden, Pratt and Purdue Global Chancellor Frank Dooley. This led to a collaborative effort with leadership, faculty and staff to explore what defines a Purdue Global education and experience in a crowded online market. The aim was to tap into the over 40 million Americans who have some college credit but no degree.

The “This Is My Comeback” campaign was launched in April. Purdue Marketing and Communications worked with longtime partners Ologie and BrandTrust, who were also involved in Purdue University’s rebranding in 2020. Over a 12-month period, the team conducted extensive research with Purdue Global students, prospective students, student advisors, faculty, alumni and business partners.

The current demographic at Purdue Global, with more than 35,000 students enrolled and approximately 11,000 degrees and certificates awarded each year, is diverse. It includes a significant number of mature students, a large proportion from underserved populations, and many who are juggling studies with caregiving responsibilities. Additionally, around 10,000 are military-affiliated students.

Purdue’s “What Can You Imagine at Purdue?” YouTube video has received over 29 million views since its launch in November 2022 and was recently awarded Best Motivational Video or Video Series in the 2023 Content Marketing Awards. The video showcases the educational journey of a young girl and her father as they navigate their way through Purdue’s diverse educational offerings.

In the world of online education, Purdue Global stands out. It’s not just about providing education that can be accessed anywhere, anytime. It’s about understanding the challenges faced by working adults and offering them a chance to grow their business or advance in their careers. As Pratt notes, “Our team has been constructing this brand by building relationships with students and alumni. By being empathetic, passionate and personable and meeting them where they are, we’re able to gather authentic stories to share across our various platforms.”

Purdue Global’s new marketing strategy is not just about digital marketing or generative AI. It’s about connecting with people on a personal level and inspiring them to take the next step in their educational journey. As Pratt concludes, “We look forward to sharing more comeback stories so others can be inspired to start or restart their journey.”

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