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GPRS Higher Education Marketing Agency

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Insights from the Higher Ed Experts

BY Anthony Campisi | May 31st, 2022

Reflecting on your prospects’ decision criteria

Reflecting on your prospects’ decision criteriaThe process your team uses to make decisions about marketing and recruiting involves some of the same steps your prospects use when considering a program. Thorough decision-making includes establishing goals and priorities, obtaining the information, and determining a return on your investment. Here we’ll examine decision criteria from your prospects’ perspective.

Goals and priorities

It’s important to reflect on your prospects’ objectives so you can determine what program attributes to prioritize in your messaging. One way of categorizing your messaging involves starting with the end goal in mind.

Goal: Quick career progression
Attributes: Expedited admission and enrollment decisions, speed to degree completion and immediate start dates

Goal: Expanding knowledge base
Attributes: Well-rounded curriculum, electives and specializations

Goal: Movement into leadership
Attributes: Leadership development program and faculty mentorship

Goal: Developing a network
Attributes: Diverse class profiles and distinguished alumni

Goal: Maintaining career momentum without disruption
Attributes: Program flexibility, course delivery options, waiving courses, and fewer credit hours

Return on investment

While many programs and schools focus on the value of the degree, it’s important to consider that cost does matter. Taking on a student loan or financing, regardless of what career stage your prospects are in can present a barrier. It’s important that your messaging not only focus on the ROI they will receive from the program — i.e. how soon they will recoup the cost through promotions and salary increases — but also on how you can help them shoulder the cost burden. Be sure to clearly state your tuition while outlining all of the financing and scholarship opportunities. Some schools also choose to provide guidance on obtaining employer sponsorship and how to convince your boss to invest in your education and future at the company.

Obtaining the information

Have you ever tried to make a decision with limited information? In business, this is often defined as “dealing with ambiguity.” While this is a skill your students will learn in the program, it’s not something you want them to encounter when selecting your program. As marketers and recruiters, it’s your job to deliver the whole picture so prospects can easily make decisions. You can do this with clear messaging on your website, detailed materials that outline and address their decision-making criteria, and open conversations with the recruiting team.

As you consider how to translate your prospects’ decision criteria into informative and helpful marketing communications, GPRS can help. With years of experience working in the higher education industry, we are skilled at customizing messages for your unique audience to increase enrollment. Contact us today to start the conversation.

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Insights from the Higher Ed Experts

BY Anthony Campisi | May 17th, 2022

Do you really know why students pick your program? Ask them.

Do you really know why students pick your program? Ask them.Your school’s marketing materials are made up of a carefully curated and balanced mix of messages that highlight your brand promise and program attributes. When your recruiting and marketing teams work together, they can create powerful messaging that connects with prospects on their journey and helps them make the decision to enroll in your program.

Once you’ve seated your class, you can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that your admissions process worked its magic. But before quickly moving on to recruiting for the next class, you may want to take one additional step with your brand new class. Ask why students pick your program.

Here’s why.

You might learn something new

Over the past couple of years, the higher ed industry has shifted dramatically. What prospects are seeking in a program has changed, along with their career aspirations and work and family situations. What used to be considered strengths of your program may not be anymore, and innovations you made to quickly adapt may now be the norm. It’s important to find out if your messages are still resonating with your prospect pool and if the perception of your school has changed. Start by going directly to the source — your current students!

You can use their insights in future marketing materials

When you are marketing your program, one of the most impactful strategies you can employ is helping prospects see themselves at your school. You can do this by presenting real stories of real students who chose your program. When prospects see their culture, background, aspirations, and even challenges represented in your materials, they are much more likely to feel included.

Regardless of how you collect the information — survey, email, informal interview, podcast, video, etc. — be sure to integrate as many real quotes from students in their own words for authenticity. You can use these insights on your website, in print materials, on social media, in videos, and in blogs to show diversity, inclusion, and a variety of stories.

You can build connections

The next time you’re talking with an undecided prospect, wouldn’t it be great to be able to connect them with a current student that faced the same struggles? The more you learn about your current students’ unique backgrounds and what factors went into making their decision to attend your program, the better you can match them up with prospects who need an extra boost of confidence. For example:

Is one of your prospects switching careers and wondering how your program can help in the transition? Connect them to a student that had those same questions and is currently making a shift.

Is another prospect a new mom who is wondering if this is the right time to start the program? Connect her to other parents who are navigating similar challenges.

Gleaning insights from your current students can help you shape (and reshape) your brand narrative, improve your marketing and recruiting strategy, and connect prospects to your program in an authentic way.

As you consider how to collect and utilize this invaluable information, GPRS can help. With years of experience working in the higher education industry, we are skilled at customizing your message for your unique audience to increase enrollment. Contact us today to start the conversation.

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ABOUT GPRS

For over two decades, GPRS has been a trusted higher education marketing agency, offering custom solutions to institutions of all sizes and degree types. Admissions directors, marketing directors, deans, and presidents rely on GPRS to provide a depth of services, including strategy, lead generation, digital marketing, nurture communications, recruiting, and analytics.

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