Story Ideas to Get You Started
At NYU, the myriad stories we can tell from countless angles are limitless. However, the more the stories communicators tell differ from one another, the less we are able to present a unified and cohesive narrative to the world about what NYU represents.
The Goal of Content Strategy
The ultimate goal of the content strategy is to help communicators create engaging, value-adding, and sustainable content for our target audiences that showcases NYU in a consistent light.
It is not about controlling which stories we tell but finding the common threads that tie them to what it means to be part of NYU. The crux of a content strategy directly reflects the NYU brand essence and surfaces stories we can tell that link back to our brand pillars.
You can use the following content topics as story ideas or simply as thought starters for your own content creation. We encourage everyone to explore and develop their own thought starters that showcase stories from the unique vantage point of their division or school based on these topics.
The creation of great content not only deepens our connection with our audiences but helps us achieve higher-level brand and institutional objectives. Those objectives are:
- Increase Awareness and Engagement: Increase regional visibility and expand the awareness and recognition of and engagement with the University in new markets and among key audiences.
- Strengthen Reputation: Enhance perception of excellence, approachability, and accessibility among key audiences.
- Increase Enrollment and Retention: Support robust undergraduate and graduate program growth.
Submit Your Work and Feedback
Have you applied the NYU writing and design styles in your marketing and communications efforts? Do you have feedback regarding the brand guidelines? We’d love for you to share your work and thoughts with us.
Please send your work or feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Founded with a mission to be open to all, we imbue an unparalleled education with resources that grant opportunity and agency to a diverse, global university community.
Content Topic 1: Diverse in People and Perspectives
Content illustrating NYU’s contribution to higher education and industry, the convergence of different perspectives and experiences, the connectivity and collaboration of unique minds and ideas, the exploration of interdisciplinary innovation across a breadth of fields, and the environment NYU fosters to enable it all.
- Designed for Collaboration and Creation
Content series shedding light on NYU incubators and creative spaces that allow for cross-disciplinary collaboration on projects—particularly across seemingly unrelated disciplines such as the arts, business, and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields.
- A New Perspective on Disciplines
Spotlight on the various perspectives and facets within disciplines (e.g., the various areas of focus and concentrations within one major) and how they shape the larger field of study. This can highlight initiatives such as the Big Ideas course series and other academic programming that drives interdisciplinary research across students and faculty.
- Many Backgrounds, One NYU
Content series emphasizing personal stories from across the NYU community, from students to employees and faculty to alumni, that showcase the range of backgrounds and circumstances people come from (e.g., geographic, cultural, socioeconomic, identity, sexual orientation) and how they find their place together at NYU.
Content Topic 2: Transformative Opportunities for All
Content that shows how NYU continues to modernize its mission and demonstrates the ability for all members of the university community to have life-altering, future-defining experiences in the classroom and the lab, onstage and in the studio, throughout units and departments, and across our cities, industries, and collaborative networks.
- Our Door Is Always Open
Content that sheds light on NYU’s mission to be open to all by offering academic programming to people outside of the NYU community and providing resources to historically marginalized communities such as first-generation students and immigrants.
- Major Moments Happen Here
Content featuring stories around serendipitous connections at NYU that lead students and faculty to their big breaks or breakthroughs, whether in class or on campus. This series also follows the internship or academic journey of students who experience pivotal moments and inflection points that alter the course of their academic, career, or even life trajectory.
- Made for This
Content series capturing the first-time feeling of belonging at NYU that spotlights communities and groups supporting people of different identities. This is further complemented with stories of people who felt they could finally discover and embrace their true passions and become who they were meant to be, especially experiences that one might say could “only happen to me at NYU.”
Content Topic 3: Outcomes and Success
Content that highlights NYU as a powerful propellant for recent graduates with promising lives and careers, successful alumni who lead their fields, researchers whose discoveries change the world for the better, administrators who positively impact the community, and educators who help shape the future of academic exploration.
- NYU Thrive
Content that highlights industries where NYU has made an indelible mark, especially through the preparation of its students and contributions from alumni and faculty. Complementary stories include a spotlight on alumni who experience fulfillment from their work and anecdotes on how NYU helped them get there.
- Home to Industry’s Finest
Content spotlighting faculty members who are professionals in their industry while also teaching at NYU. This can feature faculty profiles and their journeys on how they got to where they are professionally, their research, and their impact on students.
- Chasing Fulfillment
Spotlight on NYU students, faculty, staff, and alumni who shy away from the limelight and operate without the desire to be recognized for any accomplishments, yet find deep fulfillment in their life. This series is a nod to those who simply want to live a private life as a good person and not necessarily a public-facing or famous one.
More than a global collection of places, NYU is an electric network of exceptionally smart, intensely curious people devoted to creating novel ideas and solutions in rigorous academic environments.
Content Topic 1: Fostering Exploration of What Could Be
Content that spotlights the forward-oriented personal journey and exploration grounded in what is and striving for what can and should be that occurs at NYU.
- Every Idea Is a Big Idea
Content focusing on big ideas at NYU that result in innovative endeavors and initiatives, including the sheer number of inventions and patents that originate in the NYU community. Additionally, this showcases how community members (i.e., students, faculty, and administrators) recognize and fill necessary gaps by introducing new initiatives to the University (e.g., Leslie eLab).
- NYU: My Way
Stories that follow students and their personal journeys across their time at NYU, from their beginnings to how they shaped their NYU experience and trajectory and finally their entry into their professional career.
- Cultivating Curiosity. Fostering Creativity.
Content spotlight on faculty voices and how their experiences collaborating with other faculty members and mentoring students foster creativity for everyone.
Content Topic 2: Delivering Societal Impact
NYU’s research improves people’s lives today and affects how we’ll live and understand tomorrow. The university community not only finds answers to questions but also solutions to real problems that meet real needs.
- Many Schools, Colleges, and Programs. Endless Impact.
Content focused on schools and their direct impact on society, especially in areas such as public service and social justice (e.g., The Mercy Project, accessible city planning). This series also includes coverage across global campuses and academic centers and programs to highlight how they facilitate substantive research and innovation.
- There’s No Quit in Us
Content featuring the work across NYU administrative departments (e.g., Office of Sustainability, Office of Global Inclusion, Diversity, and Strategic Innovation, Office of Community Engagement, NYU Libraries) and the impact they have on the University as a whole.
- Community Connection
Content showcasing NYU organizations, groups, and clubs that make a positive impact on their surrounding communities through activities such as mentoring and community service (e.g., NYU Prison Education Program, America Reads and Counts, Jumpstart, MindfulNYU, Skirball Center for the Performing Arts).
Content Topic 3: Go Against the Grain
NYU pursues its own idea of academic excellence. A rigorous education is about cultivating new traditions and adapting as the world continues to change while offering an academic experience and a community of faculty, staff, and alumni that prepares students for the future they have yet to define.
- Designing the Future
Interview series with alumni and university administrators who designed their jobs and careers based on their ability to explore, discover, and connect their passions while at NYU.
- Mavericks Welcome
Content that reveals how NYU advances and adapts with the world through its continually evolving offerings and adaptive academics that are born out of necessity and student needs. This content features the variety of inventive concentrations and areas of study that are offered at schools and what that means for the NYU community compared to other more “straightforward” and “traditional” academic offerings.
- Tradition Means Something Different Here
Content that breaks down the old notions of “tradition” and redefines what it means for NYU. Examples may include traditions or institutional behaviors that encourage students to study away in addition to new university rituals that are now embedded in the NYU culture (e.g., MLK Week, World Tour, Solidarity Week, Club Fest). This series also showcases the profiles of students, alumni, administrators, and faculty who influence tradition at the University from within through activism and proactive policy creation.
Founded in New York City, one of the world’s most dynamic cities, we embrace and embody the spirit, strength, and vibrancy of great cities around the world, reflecting the intellectual energy derived from engaging with a complex range of people, ideas, and disciplines.
Content Topic 1: Urban Like NYU
Tell stories that place NYU at the center of cities, culture, and life; show how NYU isn’t just in cities—it’s an essential part of them.
- Quests of Culture
Stories demonstrating how our global locations and the cities they call home impact the experiences of students from an academic, cultural, and social perspective. This content also highlights specialized classes only available at certain locations due to their dependence on specific geographical, regional, or cultural aspects.
- The City Is Our Teacher, the World Is Our Classroom
Content that shows the learning opportunities our cities provide by shedding light on faculty and staff who incorporate field trips and “real-world” learning into enriched curriculums. This series covers programs that contain a fieldwork component such as education, health, dentistry, social work, and law, and how students’ work/study impacts the lives of people in the local communities.
- A World of Experience
Content that showcases students’ professional experiences in global cities and how these cities provided opportunities for them that may not have been available elsewhere (e.g., internships, city-based research, political campaigns). This can also spotlight alumni who settled and found homes and careers in cities where they studied.
Content Topic 2: Access to Thought Leadership Across Industries
The best work together at NYU. Connecting with industry talent and teams of creative innovators is one of NYU’s greatest attractions, so share stories about those who come together at the intersection of ideas to elevate the NYU experience.
- Who’s Who at NYU
Content covering NYU’s prolific residency programs (e.g., distinguished writer-in-residence) that attract talent who can share their insights and experiences with the NYU community along with profiles of the vast array of renowned and celebrity guest lecturers who opted to teach at NYU through their connections to faculty and staff.
- A Cornerstone of Collaboration
Content spotlighting unique collaborations at NYU such as joint academic programming between schools and interdisciplinary research between leading faculty members and administrators from different disciplines or schools.
- NetWORK It
Stories featuring students who honed their career trajectory by tapping into NYU’s vast network of thought leaders, from innovators in real estate finance to change-makers in international human rights law. This content is further complemented by stories of alumni who reach out and give back to their NYU community through the mentorship of students.
Content Topic 3: A Global Network
Meaningful intellectual immersion occurs across NYU’s global network, in locations where experiences shape perspectives, challenges and opportunities combine to sharpen trajectories, and academics adapt to agilely address the needs of students who seek to learn beyond geographic borders.
- Study Away: A Retrospection
Content series that highlights the supportive and encouraging nature of the NYU study away philosophy and how it enables students to fulfill their academic curriculum in tandem with their travel aspirations. This can also feature a before-and-after assessment of students’ study away experiences and the influence it had on their academic, career, or even life trajectory.
- At Home Around the Globe
Content that expresses how faculty broaden their perspectives through global experiences, especially when teaching at various global locations. This may also entail examples of professors who ended up settling and working at a global NYU location they previously taught at.
- At NYU Anywhere in the World
Content that demonstrates the strength of the NYU network across major cities and the ideas that stem from them via collaborative efforts such as research, art, internships, and academic programming.