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Winning web experience ThisIsMichigan.com powered by Widen

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Digital asset management (DAM) and content management software power the visual stories and web experiences you seek to create today. One of the best web experiences we’ve been a part of this year comes from the University of Michigan.

Digital Asset Management for Higher Education

ThisIsMichigan.com, the recruiting website for Michigan Athletics, sets the bar for the modern website, winner of two gold W3 Awards for education and user experience (UX).

I recently had the privilege of presenting this story with Kathy Wilson, Senior Business Systems Analyst at the University of Michigan Athletics department, at HighEdWeb in Milwaukee.


We talked about how DAM and content management software tools empower all departments across the organization to collectively drive marketing communications with greater agility, efficiency and effectiveness.

Powerful web experiences, like you see with ThisIsMichigan.com, do a great job of sharing the essence of your brand or, in Michigan’s case, their school spirit and campus culture. That’s an excellent reason why you and anyone should use a DAM system.

DAM not only helps to be more organized, but it can also empower all communications teams to utilize your content in a way that helps customers feel immersed in the value of your brand, anywhere and everywhere.

Michigan understood that to engage a younger recruiting audience, they need to offer a responsive, rich website that is multisensory and dynamic. ThisIsMichigan.com came together through the efforts of the MGoBlue team and partners, powered by the Widen Media Collective DAM and Wordpress. The Media Collective is much more than a digital asset management system. It’s also content management software that offers an out-of-the-box integration with WordPress, allowing web designers to search for visual content in the Media Collective, embed or add them to the WordPress media library.

Michigan also produced a lot of new video footage for each of their 29 sports. They use the Media Collective as their content marketing hub to house and serve video assets to the website. The Collective provides optimized video streaming performance, while also removing the bandwidth burden from Michigan’s web servers. Their web developer noted that the Widen video player was easy to implement, supports HTML5 video — and offered multiple video resolutions to create custom video theaters and controls. For example, the homepage displays a large ambient video streamed by Widen that seamlessly loops, an effect they were not able to achieve using YouTube.

“The marriage of WordPress and the Media Collective made the job of creating a world-class recruiting website a reality,” said Kathy Wilson. “We hope our potential recruits feel the same and take the next step to coming onsite to visit Michigan and see the opportunities we can offer them in world-class education and athletics.

How are you building world class brand experiences? Leave a comment or tweet @JakeAthey.

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