College recruitment efforts have historically involved mail and telephone communication. Prospective students were required to submit their information in order to receive admissions information, making it easy for the school to build its recruitment prospect pool. This approach alone, however, no longer produces the same results. Students expect most information to be available via a school’s website.
If the student cannot find admissions information online, it’s unlikely that he or she will submit an application. With this in mind, colleges and universities need to ensure that all information is available and is easy to find. So the big challenge is to provide relevant content while still encouraging prospective students to submit their contact details.
The following list highlights tactics that college marketers should use in their student recruitment plans:
All important information should be readily available on your website, however, additional campus life details can be provided through email, social media, and direct mail follow up. To access these additional resources, prospective students should be required to submit their contact details.
With more of your school’s information available publicly, it’s important to make the most of the contact submissions that you receive. Make sure that all email and physical mailing addresses are verified at the point of capture. While small errors appear to be insignificant, the ramifications of simple data entry mistakes can be severe. It’s important for recruitment officers to communicate with all interested prospective students. An incorrect email or mailing address will prevent that from happening.
The introduction of new media and technologies has had a significant impact on how schools reach potential students. Not long ago, direct mail was king in the student recruitment world. Then came various forms of web marketing and the predictions that it would dominate all other media, making direct mail obsolete. Instead of replacing direct mail, the internet has become a powerful partner in successful direct-response student recruitment programs. Web/mail integration is the new king, so make certain to include integrating your communication channels in your student recruitment plans.
The most effective use is to add an online inquiry submission option to your direct-mail letters and reply slips. Use a direct mail piece to tell prospective students they can receive more information by going to a unique URL address. A Personalized URL, or PURL.
The PURL directs the prospect not to your home page, but to a landing page that is coordinated in its design and messaging with the direct mail package. The page is customizable to include any data collection function needed. This is also an easy way to track the effectiveness of your message since your PURL can be set up for easy one-click reports.
To help ensure student interaction, include information that makes the prospect feel like a part of the school. Provide campus life updates, such as sporting event calendars, student life video clips, or student club opportunities. These communications tend to be more fun but still informative.
These are just a few suggestions to help you with your recruiting efforts. What works for you might not necessarily work for another institution.
Call us now at 314.492.2536 to learn how we can help improve your business to business program, or email jimeH@Allegrastl.com (email ).