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University Web Developers

I wrote a blog post nearly a couple of years ago about a postcard I received in the mail. Instead of rewriting the post, please take a look at it. I'm interested in seeing what others think of this.

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That is an interesting issue. In terms of the technology, you can probably type bart.simpson in the URL and get a custom page for the cartoon character. The user is encouraged to provide the information in the URL to customize the page for him/her. So this is something pretty easy to do.

I have not seen any results of marketing campaign response rates to custom URLs vs. generic URLs. If I got a card like that, I would be more apt not to type in the custom URL if I was interested, but that is just me.

Given our incoming students' propensity to join social networks of all sorts, I'm not sure this same concern would ring true among the undergraduate population. As for the graduate population, I'm not so sure. It would probably be worth the research.
Like Steve said, the important thing is how the results are compared to not having a dynamic URL.

Personally I don't like this method because someone could type in a bunch of vulgarities as the name which results in your school producing an inappropriate page.

And god forbid someone creating links to the vulgar page to try and get it ranked in the search engines - "Welcome to ABC College, F YOU!!!" or "Welcome to ABC College, We Suck".

Unless the site is doing a database read to match the URL name to a name on the marketing list then this type of page creation needs to be monitored carefully for the EDU sector.
we used to do these for our clients at my previous job. but we only sent them to students who had already expressed interest in the university. i don't see the point in sending it to those who have never contacted you. probably a waste of your marketing/direct mail budget.

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