ARE YOU IN OR ARE YOU OUT: Persistence, when combined with possibility, is admirable. But persistence in the face of rejection is often futile. As an enrollment marketer, you and your admissions team are working around the clock to convince your applicants that they should choose you. But at the end of the day, you want to make sure you're nurturing the right applicants.
Make sure you don't waste your time chasing applicants who have already decided to attend another school. Gain clarity on the opportunity that is still available to you by connecting with applicants who are on the fence—then, fight their indecision with information. Here are a few ideas to run with:
1) Make the ask — and do it 'in person'
- It can be nerve-wracking to be direct and ask an applicant if they've decided to attend another school, but it's the fastest way to narrow down the sea of applicants and prioritize the ones who are still unsure. Send an email with a thumbnail for a personalized video you've recorded using a site like Vidyard or Wistia. Keep the video short and sweet and ask them to let you know where they're at. Then, link the thumbnail to a landing page which houses the video and three CTAs: "I'm in," "I'm unsure," "I'm out." Build a workflow for each of these options, focusing the most on the "unsure" group. Now you know your pool and can ask questions, provide information, and clear up any confusion an applicant might have about your school.
2) When following up, constantly add value
Don't just "check in" or "follow up" in an email or a phone call with an applicant still considering your school without keeping the conversation going. Continually add value by sharing content and information that aligns with what an applicant cares about. Your goal is to keep engaging, even as you ask for status updates. If you're checking in about submitting a deposit, pair the ask with a link to a student video testimonial, or to a blog post about the thriving social organizations on campus.
Shameless plug 🔌 Podcast hosts Zach Busekrus and Mickey Baines shared their insights about engaging with applicants during this critical window of time in the latest Fanatical Fridays — Episode 32: What Admissions Counselors Can do Today to Increase Deposits.
🎁 BONUS TOPIC 🎁
STAY UP ON THE LATEST VIDEO TRENDS: Fingers crossed that you're not sick of hearing us go on and on about video. But it's such a powerful tactic, and one that is still widely underutilized, so we feel it's our job to keep pushing the necessity of a video strategy. Luckily, Vidyard recently-released a 2021 video benchmarks report. These are some takeaways we think are most interesting and actionable for our fellow enrollment marketers:
- On average, 45% of users will watch a video through to completion (regardless of length).
- User-generated content increased 128% from 2019 to 2020.
- The most common video types used by businesses include how-to videos, explainers, and webinars.
- The video types with the biggest growth were how-to videos (50% increase over 2019) and one-to-one videos (471% year-over-year growth).
Shameless plug 🔌 Looking for a step-by-step guide to get started with video marketing? Our blog post fits the bill: "How to Do Video Marketing for Student Recruitment."
Our podcast network is growing! Check out our latest show 👇
Starter Stories is a new podcast that explores the stories behind the world’s leading education technology companies and education consultancies...and the people who created them.