Assistant AD / Communications
CINCINNATI- University of Cincinnati Athletic Director John Cunningham announced on Tuesday the promotion of Ben Hofstetter to the Senior Associate Director of Sports, Digital and Strategic Engagement.
Hofstetter will join Cunningham’s executive staff, while continuing to oversee The Agency, a team of 11 full-time employees that manages the department’s digital, social, creative, brand and sports communications.
“Ben has been an indispensable member of our Athletic Department team for several years and I am delighted to have him join our leadership team while continuing to lead the Agency,” Cunningham said. “Under Ben’s leadership, our creative, digital, and communications teams produced engaging content for our fans and student-athletes, increasing the visibility of the Cincinnati Bearcats brand, and developing revenue-generating strategies. He deserved this opportunity, and I can’t wait for what bold ideas he will implement next.”
Under Hofstetter, the agency led the charge of “Sell & Story Tell,” a pillar of Cunningham’s Next Level Success strategic plan. Over the past 18 months, UC has been committed to telling its story in new and unique ways with the goal of selling tickets, increasing revenue and promoting the Bearcats brand nationally.
With Hofstetter in the lead, the Agency produced award-winning, groundbreaking content in 2021-22. The UC Athletic Department’s leading social media account, @GoBearcats, ranked #1 in the nation in Twitter interactions and Instagram growth, while GoBearcats.com traffic recorded a 193% increase in one year. The Agency-produced digital series “Let It Fly” was nominated for an Emmy, while media mentions generated more than $2.5 billion in advertising value for the 2021 football season.
Additionally, Hofstetter leads messaging and branding with universities and conference partners, including leading UC’s efforts to join the Big 12, while working with the American Athletic Conference for its championship game. football and the college football playoffs in 2021.
Hofstetter led the build-up to ESPN College GameDay’s first-ever appearance on the UC campus. More than two million viewers watched the broadcast, which essentially served as a three-hour commercial for the University of Cincinnati and the athletic department.
This summer, football also sold out season tickets for the first time in school history.
Hofstetter was promoted to lead the Agency in 2021 after excelling in his role as Associate DA, Digital from 2019-2021. He led the department’s digital, design and storytelling initiatives for all 18 programs for more than three years.
“Ben is an innovator, strategic thinker and leader in the creative and digital space,” said Anthony DiFino, Deputy AD, External. “He’s a problem solver who brings out the best in those who work with him. Over the past year, Ben has worn many hats. He was instrumental in the planning and execution of ESPN College GameDay , college football playoffs, and a successful men’s basketball game, among countless initiatives.”
Hofstetter joined the University of Cincinnati Department of Athletics in 2017 as an Associate AD, Strategic Initiatives working directly with the Director of Athletics on special projects including playing a critical role in the University of Cincinnati Renovation Project. the fifth third arena in 2018, conducting a multi-channel marketing campaign to promote new venue amenities, seating options, and sponsorship and naming opportunities. The campaign culminated in back-to-back season ticket sales for men’s basketball in 2018-19 and 2019-20, the first two seasons in the renovated arena before it reached capacity limits due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, he led the implementation of Salesforce, the department’s first customer relationship management system.
Hofstetter began his career at the University of Cincinnati in 2008. Prior to joining the athletics department, he served in the Office of the President at the University of Cincinnati from 2012 to 2017 as a Special Assistant/Digital Media. He oversaw the office’s digital communications, including university websites and social media accounts. He created then-President Santa Ono’s @PrezOno Twitter account as a leader in the higher education social media space. Hofstetter earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Electronic Media with a minor in Marketing from the University of Dayton.
The longtime Bearcats fan and his wife, Dr. Colleen, live in Cincinnati with their three children, Matthew, Mitchell and Mia.
ABOUT CINCINNATI ATHLETICS
The University of Cincinnati Department of Athletics competes at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics with a vision to achieve Next Level Success for the 18 university teams and more than 500 student-athletes. The Bearcats have a proud athletic history, winning eight national championships and 117 conference titles. Cincinnati’s men’s basketball team is among the top 15 winningest programs of all time, while the football team became the first American Athletic Conference program to make the college football playoffs in 2021 Olympic gold medalist, volleyball player Jordan Thompson, NBA Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson and Major League Baseball legend Sandy Koufax are among the personalities who have competed as the Bearcats.
UC student-athletes collectively posted an overall average of 3,369 in Spring 2021 with 77% honor roll earning spots, while six student-athletes received CoSIDA Academic All-America honors.
Under the direction of the sports director John Cunninghamand supported by more than 150 full-time employees, The mission of UC Athletics is to relate our community, to improve our university and impact the lives of student-athletes as they prepare to change the world on and off the field.
For more information, visit gobearcats.com.
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