The Internal Communications team currently oversees and distributes three campus newsletters: Monday Memo for staff and faculty, In Case You Missed It (ICYMI) for staff, faculty and subscribing members inside and outside of the campus community, and the monthly Cat Chronicle for undergraduate students. Each of these newsletters offer campus partners the opportunity to convey information of interest to campus stakeholders, however, because we receive many submissions in a given week for the limited amount of space that we have available, we cannot guarantee that all submitted content will be featured, although in these cases we do our best to find alternative options where possible. In the interest of maintaining fresh, interesting and accessible content that our audiences will want to (and be able to) continue reading, we have established the following submission guidelines below:
- Text for any one item cannot exceed 120 words. If longer content is submitted, the editors reserve the right to truncate or edit content down to fit the standard length. If you have a lot of information to convey, we recommend submitting a short summary and linking to a longer article or post on your site, which also helps drive traffic to your site.
- No more than two standard size (see below) photos or graphics per department, per Memo, regardless of how many items are submitted.
- All images and graphics must fit within space parameters for optimal mobile and desktop viewing. You have two sizing options to choose from: square (i.e. 600x600px or 1:1 aspect ratio) or horizontal rectangle (700x200px or 7:2 aspect ratio). We reserve the right to crop or reduce the size of any photo submitted and are happy to link to flyers or content on your own department webpages if you have a larger photo or graphic to share. If you need assistance designing around these size parameters, Canva is a free and easy design platform that offers the option of creating custom templates based on the size you input.
- Guidelines for infographics and flyers:
- Be mindful of mobile view. How does the text read at 2.25 inches (about 6 cm) wide? If you can't read it, don't submit it in that form. We strongly recommend reducing the amount of text used in images or graphics and instead adding context via the written content that you submit. For example, instead of putting the event details or description on a poster, use a compelling image or design to draw attention to your Monday Memo section and add the event details and links in your copy.
- Be sure there is a strong contrast between text and background colors and steer clear of hard-to-read fonts. Readability and accessibility are paramount. For more tips and info on creating accessible marketing materials, click here. We also suggest sticking to the UC Merced branded fonts when possible, which are available for download here, or use common fonts like Tahoma, Open Sans, Arial or Georgia.
- Do not add Zoom or other complex hyperlinks to your graphics for Monday Memo as they will not be clickable, and please double-check your Zoom links before submitting your content. We strongly recommend setting up a registration page for your Zoom event for optimal engagement rather than sharing the direct link to the call; that way you will have access to registrants' contact information and can communicate with them directly before and after the event.
- Posting frequency: In order to keep the Monday Memo fresh and interesting, we will only post the same content a maximum of 3 times. For example, if you have an upcoming event and want to inform the campus community, you can decide the dates you would like to have your content included in the Monday Memo, up to a maximum of 3 issues or editions. This gives other campus partners a chance to publish their content and keeps the newsletter fresh and interesting for readers. Our data show that re-posting of the same content is not more effective in garnering engagement or interest, but can actually turn readers off to the newsletter.
- Submission deadlines: We kindly ask that all content be submitted by the Thursday afternoon prior to the following Monday Memo. Though we try our best to accommodate our campus partners, due to staffing limitations and the number of requests we receive, we cannot guarantee that all content submitted later than that will make it into the next Monday Memo.
- Optimizing your communications channels: The Monday Memo is just one way of sharing information with the campus community. Many of our campus partners have their own newsletters and social media channels that allow them to engage in much more meaningful ways with their audiences. If you would like to start your own newsletter, we’re happy to provide tips on how to get started. Once you begin building your contact list, we can help promote your newsletter and your sign up page in the Monday Memo. Additionally, the Connect App is now set up to allow you to build a following and directly message your followers whenever you want. Click here for more ideas on how you can get your messages out to your teams and constituents.
To submit your content, email firstname.lastname@example.org and CC Jenn Taylor at email@example.com. For more branding and design tips, check out the Marketing team's website, which is full of downloadable templates and resources.