Bob Johnson's Blog on Higher Education Marketing

Student recruitment email... starting to summarize our secret shopper results

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Inquiry response emails... after application deadlines, only one active recruiter

If you've been following this secret shopper campaign, you know that I've been collecting email responses from 6 colleges and universities in New York and New England since late last June. If you're new to these reports, you can start with the first entry, "Enrollment Inquiries... do colleges and universities really want them?"

Now that January application deadlines have passed, only the "private college in update NY" has continued contact with a last push to get my "Fast-Forward" application. We'll get back to that end game next week after we see if the final deadline of February 15 is more final than the earlier ones.

And so it is time to begin sorting out what's been received. That will happen in a new series of blog posts over the next few weeks. Today, here is a first note on the great variation in email sent from our 6 schools.

Overall, our high school student received 89 email. How were those distributed among the colleges and universities?

  • "Private college in upstate NY" is the clear winner.... 42 emails
  • "Private university in Massachusetts" was next at 16 emails
  • "Private university in Rhode Island" sent 11 emails
  • "Most selective university" followed with 10 emails
  • "Private university in Connecticut" sent 3 emails
  • "Public honors college in New York" sent just 2 emails
First conclusions:

  • Email marketing was a key recruitment communication element for two of our schools and a significant one for two others.
  • And for two of our schools, email marketing to an online inquiry was a very minor part of their communication plan.
Case study: how to not do integrated marketing

Note that the "Fast-Forward" application campaign from the "private college in upstate NY" added to the total received from that school. 

Not long into the recruitment season it was obvious that neither the timing nor the messaging nor the style of these emails was integrated with the other email contacts being received. That effort could be a case study in how not to do integrated marketing communications. We'll report more about that soon.

That's all for now.

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