Showing Off is Part of Marketing

Modesty. It’s a quality our parents ingrain in us, right from the start. “Don’t brag about beating your brother in the game!” “Don’t gloat about your new tennis shoes!” “Don’t show off—it’s not nice!”

Break modesty down a bit more and you get: “Limited” “Unassuming” “Plainness”. Surely our brand seeks to be bolder than modest.

Why is Bragging Vital?

Michigan Tech is ready to take the next step. We knowing who we are and it’s time we speak confidently about it. No excuses.  If we want to be a national brand, we have to talk that way.

We’ve earned our brags.

The average American takes in 100,000 words every day. Want them to remember your 140-character tweet? We’ve got to be memorable (for good things). Pick your best stories—real and human—and tell them. Keep telling them. You may tire of them, but your audience will not.

How does your brag impact their brand? Consumers want to align themselves with brands that say something about their brand. Here at Michigan Tech, our students want to show their 400+ friends on Instagram that they’re tough (trudging through 218 inches of snow) and crazy smart (late nights in the lab working on paid research as an undergrad).

So, How Do We Brag?

First off, avoid the #humblebrag. Be clear about what you’re touting. Speak boldy, but briefly. Confident, but not cocky.  

Consider brag bites. Don’t share all of our achievements at once. An example: These data points all center on the same topic, student loans. Each are very braggable, but combined are TMI and become forgettable.

Michigan Tech grads can repay their students loans. Compare the student loan default rate among Huskies (2 percent) to the national average (11.3 percent) and the state of Michigan average (11.8 percent). It’s the second lowest among public universities in the state. 95 percent of Michigan Tech undergraduates are able to repay their students loans on time—and with money to spare.

Break them up and sprinkle them on, like this:

Brag bite 1
Michigan Tech grads can repay their students loans. Compare the student loan default rate among Huskies (2 percent) to the national average (11.3 percent) and the state of Michigan average (11.8 percent).

Brag bite 2
Michigan Tech’s student loan default rate is the second lowest among public universities in Michigan.

Brag bite 3
Michigan Tech undergraduates are able to repay their students loans on time—and with money to spare.

It’s been said that if you’re that good, they’ll tell you. So share what’s already being said. Share positive testimonials and quotes. Place them on your website, social media, publications, and emails. And it’s okay to seek these out—ask for them. It’s also okay to edit for length, style, and grammar (just be sure to get approval before publishing others’ words).

Celebrate milestones, awards, rankings, achievements, and accreditations that are already happening. Use data points, facts, and figures to back it up (our STEM-minded audience craves this!). And of course, just like our parents taught us, be honest—we have to live up to the hype.

–Shannon Rinkinen
Brand Manager