July 26–28 • Boston University



Few roles require as much dexterity as boarding school marketing and communications professionals. Effective messaging in various media ranging from print to email to social media to video requires skills ranging from research to data analytics to effective storytelling and insights about how to best engage and inspire a wide variety of audiences.


Participants will dive into a skills-based comprehensive curriculum in large and small-group sessions, utilizing best practices, case studies and authentic assets straight from the boarding school ecosystem in conversations with mentors and colleagues.


July 26–28


Boston University


Marketing and communication professionals, regardless of years of experience.


Understand the latest data about why families choose boarding schools for their children--and how those insights can inform effective messaging strategies.

Examine the messaging of your school’s unique value proposition and how to cascade a strong brand throughout a marketing portfolio.

Enhance your skills in digital marketing, including building your search engine marketing toolkit, content creation chops, campaign-creation skills, and ROI assessment.

Translate strategies for effective storytelling into the boarding school environment to inspire your listeners to connect, feel and act.

Shore up your crisis communications plans and communications assets, utilizing case studies to water-test yoru plans.

Unpack generational insights and strategic approaches customized to domestic and international audiences.

Dive into the tools and resources you’ll need for effective research and learn to utilize data analytics to allocate your time.

Develop the habits of mind and daily practices that position marketing leads to effectively manage internal partnerships and projects.

Brainstorm, strategize and problem-solve with a personal network of marketing and communications mentors and colleagues throughout the boarding school industry.



Director of Communications and Marketing, Western Reserve Academy OH

Meg joined WRA with more than 20 years of experience as a strategic communicator, marketing executive and government affairs specialist with experience building brands, guiding corporate social responsibility initiatives, and driving awareness and action around the arts, economic development and political initiatives.

Prior to WRA, Meg was the Associate Director of Corporate and Government Affairs for Kraft Heinz, where she helped usher in a new era for the company when Heinz was acquired by 3G Capital and Berkshire Hathaway in 2013. She lives in Hudson OH with her husband, Doug, and three sons.


Founder and CEO, SchneiderB Media PA

Brendan Schneider leads SchneiderB Media, a digital marketing agency for schools that focuses on increasing inquiries. He is one of the leaders in the field for teaching on and knowledge about inbound marketing for schools. Brendan presents and consults on inbound marketing, social media, SEO, and marketing technology at the regional and national levels. With his workshops, the SchneiderB Media blog, his podcast, his SchneiderB VirCons, and his SEO Coach software, he continues to advance the abilities of the independent school admission, communication, and marketing professional. Brendan is also the founder of The MarCom Society, a community created exclusively for Marketing and Communication (MarCom) Professionals at schools.

Marketing & Communication Agenda

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Monday, July 26 • Noon–4pm ET

Understanding your Audiences


Kickoff: Welcome to the TABS Marketing & Communication Institute!

Get to know your program mentor, fellow attendees, and lead facilitators for the program. 

Why Do Families Choose Boarding?

Join TABS leadership to unpack the data, both quantitative and qualitative, about what leads students and families to choose the boarding school experience and explore the unique ways you can leverage those insights for your school’s development strategy.


Habits of Mind and Daily Practice for Successful Strategic Communications

With a finite budget of time, energy and financial resources, explore ways to develop a strategic framework that positions you to approach each day and project through a lens focused on return on investment. From daily conversations in the dining hall, to visiting classes, to making your team members shine, discover the key strategic frameworks, habits of mind and daily behaviors you’ll want to incorporate into your routine to support your team and convey narratives of impact.


Know Your Audience: Understanding Gen X, Millennials and the Alphas

Generationally speaking, what drives decisions and engagement for teenagers? Their parents? Their grandparents? Your alumni? Unpack insights about generational values and strategic approaches customized to inspire each of your stakeholder groups.

We’ll introduce you to the elevator pitch exercise during this session.


Bridging Cultures: Effective International Marketing Strategies

When it comes to brand and narrative, how might you translate and customize your storytelling for greatest impact in each culture you reach? Explore the complexities of conveying messaging to the wide variety of international cultures seeking to discover your school and examine practices to help you tailor your efforts for international audiences.

We’ll introduce you to the elevator pitch exercise during this session.

Tuesday, July 27 • Noon–4pm ET

Creatively Convey your Value Proposition


Cascading the Brand: Articulating your Unique Story across Programs and Channels

A community of supportive adult mentors, a safe environment to explore new experiences and skills, the opportunity to develop a global network–these are just a few of the communication pillars for articulating the value of the boarding schools experience. Examine your school’s unique value proposition in relation to surrounding institutions and identify new ways to cascade that key message across myriad programs and channels. 


Finding and Leveraging the Story

Hundreds of stories with potential impact unfold on your campus each day–on the field, in the dorm, around the dining hall tables. Discuss strategies for seeking out these potential narratives and finding the best way to capture them. Then, explore ways to translate the narrative for a wide mix of stakeholder groups and leveraging a variety of communication channels.


Innovative Marketing Strategies for the TikTok Generation

We are seeing incredibly creative communications in the boarding school world and in higher education. Inspiration is everywhere and you don’t want to have your school left behind-tap into your creative side!  During this session we will see the top 5 most innovative ideas emerging in the market that are helping educational organizations gain attention and get ahead of the competition.

We’ll introduce you to the elevator pitch exercise during this session.

Wednesday, July 28 • Noon–4pm ET

Building and Assessing your Digital Marketing Toolkit


Strengthen your Search Engine Marketing (SEM) Toolkit

Effective search engine marketing and optimization has only become more critical in the past year as visiting campus become more complex for families. In this session, you’ll identify and examine the top channels  and tools for SEM based on your goals and institutional budget and have a chance to practice and implement a simple SEM strategy. 


Assessing ROI: How Do You Know If It’s Working?

When it comes to digital marketing, effective communication officers constantly assess analytics and determine where to maintain and where to make strategic pivots. In this session, you’ll identify your current key performance indicators and live-time value of your stakeholders and learn strategies for evaluating results against your KPIs.


Writing and Launching Ad Campaigns that Engage

To best leverage your time and resources, you need to garner new strategies and tools for identifying and incorporating keywords you should be targeting. Explore the latest intel behind AdWords and the value of custom landing pages and unleash the value of working with a Content Mapping template.


Finding and Telling the Story: Keys to Daily Social Media Engagement

Explore ways that you can leverage your school’s many social media channels for impact with both student and parent audiences. In this session, you’ll unpack ways to launch strategic content across specific channels for distinct audiences and how to use organic and digital marketing to amplify your content’s reach.

Thursday, July 29 • Noon–4pm ET

Keys to Strategic Communication


Crisis Communication Planning … Before the Crisis

When a crisis occurs on campus, you’ll likely be in close collaboration with other key leaders at your school. In this session, you’ll use case studies to understand the basics of strong crisis communication strategy in a variety of scenarios so that you are positioned to most effectively support your students, families and team when challenges arise in your community.


Strong Internal Partnerships

Effective communication officers collaborate with colleagues from a wide range of departments each day, and rely on strong relationships with key departments for success. Hear from leaders in boarding schools who have cracked the code in establishing strong cross-team partnerships and understand the processes they’ve put in place for smooth and cohesive collaboration.


Wrap Up and Send Off

Bring your Marketing and Communication Institute experience to a close with a celebratory send-off into the academic year and the affirmation of your colleagues.

Schedule is subject to change.

Institute Schedule Overview






Morning Sessions




Afternoon Sessions


Welcome Reception




Morning Sessions




Afternoon Sessions


Wrap Up




Morning Sessions




Afternoon Sessions


Wrap Up