Visuals are key to Furman’s marketing materials. Prospective students want to be able to envision themselves living and learning on campus. The communications team uses photography in the majority of their initiatives, whether digitally on their beautifully designed website, news releases, or social, or in printed materials, such as viewbooks and brochures, that prospective students receive in the mail.
“With The Furman Advantage, we focus strongly on engaged learning opportunities, but also on the campus experience and mentorship. We try to capture this in our photography,” says Kaylee.
The university communications team needed to access imagery to tell stories that would inspire prospective students, engage with the Furman community – current students, faculty, staff, alumni, donors, and friends – and further the university’s reputation and awareness, without wasting precious time. As the communications team’s strategic initiatives grew, along with their usage of digital assets to complement their storytelling, it became too time-consuming to find assets in a scattered system of local servers, external hard drives, Box folders, and discs containing thousands of unorganized photos.
The team chose Canto because the platform scored top marks in meeting the team’s checklist of requirements and struck a perfect balance between functionality and ease of use. While Canto’s search and metadata features meant the team could organize and sort through their thousands of photos easily, the creative team would have no problem navigating the user-friendly platform.
“Canto rose to the top of our list of candidates for its intuitive interface, tagging and searchability, functionality, and price point,” says Kaylee.
A central hub for photography
Since the team uses photography for the majority of their print and digital projects, having a central library helps the team stay organized and in sync. Canto is Furman University’s go-to place to store and access photography, containing all new photos taken since Canto’s implementation as well as useful older assets migrated from their previous systems.
“The visual assets work hand-in-hand with the stories we tell. The majority of our current materials – both print and digital – utilize photography that was pulled from Canto,” says Kaylee.
Full campus collaboration
Each member of the communications team has a seat in Canto so that they can access photos themselves, and the team sends collection links to other departments on campus and community and media partners. This streamlined process helps photo selection flow more smoothly.
“Across campus, we all have the same goals. Canto helps to bring us all together and work as a team,” says Kaylee.
The communications team works closely with admissions throughout the year, with one of the biggest projects being the annual viewbook. The admissions department sends the viewbook to prospective students to showcase the university’s offerings. The heavily-visual viewbook requires a lot of photography that the team pulls directly from Canto and shares with the admissions team in a matter of minutes, rather than digging through endless folders.
The team organizes their content by category or event, and it’s easy for their in-house photographers to upload images to the right place with Canto’s folder and album structure. Thoroughly adding keywords and tags and enabling facial recognition also helps the team quickly find the right assets.