Bob Johnson's Blog on Higher Education Marketing

Your Higher Education Marketing Newsletter... March 2014

| No Comments | No TrackBacks
March greetings to everyone. And best wishes for success to everyone who is heading into the deposit collection recruitment stretch for your new freshman class in March and April. 

Today I expect to finish the new recruitment focused edition of my two-day conference on Writing Right for the Web, set for March 27-28 in Denver. Check the agenda at bitly.com/19tJcaL 

The Call for Papers for eduWeb14 is extended until March 21. Visit bitly.com/11EvfhY to submit your session for review.

How effective is your online marketing? My April 1 Master Class will help you answer that question. From the first impression you create on your website to your ongoing electronic communications will impact conversion success at each stage of the recruitment cycle. Register to join us atbitly.com/1aFpDim 

And now here are your marketing news and notes for March.
_____________________________
Net Price Calculators: How Results Differ Among 16 Schools

Inspired by an inquiring mind, an enterprising VP for enrollment completed 16 Net Price Calculators to see how his school compared to both private and public sector competitors. Four different financial and academic profiles were used.

The experience and the results, as you might expect, varied greatly. Check the results and the reasons and plan a similar competitive intelligence study of your own. Visit bitly.com/MGOTsW 
________________________________
Email Subject Lines: The Best and the Worst in the 2013-2014 Recruitment Cycle

Everyone in higher education marketing should read the report by Jens Larson about his secret shopping experiences during the current recruitment cycle.

Jens gives plaudits to Bates College, Oklahoma State University and the universities of Chicago and Oregon for doing an excellent job. He has reviewed hundreds of emails to bring you a selection of what he thinks works well and what does not work nearly so well at bit.ly/NuwH6n 
________________________________
"Honest University Commercial": 3 Million+ People Have Watched This

You will lose track of how many things in this nearly 3 minute video parody of higher education advertising will drive you mad. But 3 million people and climbing have at least clicked on the YouTube link since it was first posted. Add 125,000 likes and 9,374 comments as I type this.

This is another piece in the negative PR world that has a lesson for higher education marketing efforts. Watch the video at bit.ly/1kgzHhZ 
________________________________
MBA Marketing: New Approaches to Product, Price, and Place

Repeat the four Ps of marketing as often as you want but attention to Product, Price, and Place often ranks much lower than attention to Promotion. And that is why it is good to see three MBA programs at three very different types of universities adopting innovative approaches to better fit the interests (and schedules) of potential students.

Changes at Benedictine, Cornell, and Villanova universities are reviewed in an in-depth article by Inside Higher Education at bitly.com/1eGj1eP
________________________________
Pew Research Center: Yes, Attending College is Worthwhile

This new survey report from the Pew Research Center will give heart to anyone who can use statistical reinforcement of the value of a higher education degree, particularly from the perspective of recently graduated Millennials. 

A key variable: graduates in some majors are more convinced of the value of their time and money than are others. Engineering and science majors are the most satisfied.

See a summary of 6 key findings at bit.ly/1bT4ku3 and move from there to a copy of the full report.
________________________________
2014 Mobile Behavior Report: Smartphones vs. Tablets and More

Strengthen your online communication strategy with an in-depth knowledge of how and when people actually use their mobile devices.

The top activity on both phones and tables: accessing email. People are much more likely to visit Twitter from a tablet than a smartphone. The reverse is true for Pinterest. On mobile, people prefer to use Facebook on a mobile app. The reverse is true for Twitter. Overall, mobile apps are popular in comparison to mobile-ready websites.

For more, including age, gender, and income information download the 35-page report atwww.exacttarget.com/2014-mobile-behavior-report 
________________________________
Text Messaging and Student Recruitment: New Approach at Drexel Online

Drexel Online, a place with strong marketing savvy, has recently adopted an approach to text messaging that I have not seen elsewhere: in order to submit an online inquiry form, you must agree to receive text messages along with phone contacts.

Drexel tells me people can opt out after receiving the first message. This is a new effort and results on how many people are opting out are not available. See the inquiry form at bit.ly/1eXCyXQ 
________________________________
Simplifying Financial Aid: New College Board Reports Recommends Process Changes

The College Board has just published a "Back to Basics" report that focuses on reducing or changing the data needed to complete the FAFSA and still arrive at a reasonable measure for need-based aid. One key point in the recommendations: get realistic information on college costs in the hands of first-generation families, especially likely Pell Grant recipients, as soon as possible.

Will these recommendations find favor at your school? Answer that question after reading the Chronicle article at bit.ly/1bYJn0L 
________________________________
Website Readability Test Tool: Check Your Site Today

On the web, simple is most often better. The University of Cambridge university research site home page is written at a 10th grade level.

Will your site do as well? Use the free Readability Test Tool and find out at read-able.com/ 
________________________________
Viral Marketing: Examples from Oberlin College and McMaster University

Can you make viral marketing a fruitful part of your marketing toolkit?

Cameron Pegg thinks you can and writes about that in a CASE article that includes examples of successful Oberlin College and McMaster University efforts. Pay special attention to the infographic on how to create a "viral marketing culture" when you visit bit.ly/Ne14OF 
________________________________
LinkedIn for Student Recruitment

Graham Edwards has written an interesting piece on how to use LinkedIn for student recruitment. Not advertising, but how to best take advantage of the new LinkedIn university page feature as you build your presence there.

My personal best bet: use this to show parents of traditional age students how your alumni are doing out and about the world after graduation. Graham has more ideas at bit.ly/1gzw3xa 
_________________________________
For-Profit Sector: 22 State Suits Focus on Improper Marketing

Suits are in progress in 22 states against 10 for-profit schools. Four Federal Government divisions have also filed suits. Just four schools are attracting most of the attention, often based on loan practices and claims about employability and earnings after graduation. 

Even marketers who do not work in the for-profit sector should pay attention. Will anyone ask universities to prove their claims to "academic excellence" anytime soon? The winds on what is acceptable and what is not are changing.

See who is attracting the most attention when you scan the chart at bit.ly/1bYJn0L 
_________________________________
Most Popular Topic in February Newsletter: 8 Web Design Elements You No Longer Need

The runaway top topic last month from UX magazine discusses website features you can safely dispense with starts with drop-down menus and carousels and adds six more elements to review at bit.ly/1cDQ9r2 
_________________________________ 
Conference and Master Class Presentations in March and April

March 27-28, Denver: "Writing Right for the Web: Focusing on Student Recruitment" sponsored by Academic Impressions. Agenda and registration at bit.ly/19tJcaL 

April 1, Philadelphia: "Critical Online Steps to Boost Enrollment: Speed, Simplicity, and Top Task Completion," an eduWeb Master Class. Review the program and register at bit.ly/1aFpDim 

Plan a custom presentation on your campus. Host a workshop on any of my conference topics. Review the 2013 list at bit.ly/NVQR8c and contact me at bob@bobjohnsonconsulting.com or 248.766.6425.
________________________________
Be a marketing champion on your campus.

Bob Johnson, Ph.D. 
President
Bob Johnson Consulting, LLC
__________________________________________

No TrackBacks

TrackBack URL: http://www.bobjohnsonblog.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-t.cgi/306

Leave a comment





Bob Johnson
Blog Contents
Recent Entries Categories Monthly Archives