Stretch Your Enrollment Budget

Three Tools to Stretch Your Enrollment Marketing Dollars

Enrollment marketing is a critical part of recruiting students. But as marketing costs keep going up, competition increases and budgets shrink, it becomes increasingly important that institutions find ways to maximize their spend. The good news is that data analytics can easily help stretch your enrollment budget by showing you where to find your target audience and what they are looking for in a university. Better news is that these three digital tools work together to give a robust snapshot of your audience and complement marketing efforts. Want even better news? Most of the data reporting is free.

Google Analytics – this free tool provides a treasure of data, such as how people navigate your website, how they arrived at your site and what pages they visit most. Use this information to allocate your marketing budget. For example, if GA reports a high number of referrals from Facebook, invest in that platform. Take it a step further and A/B test Facebook ads based on most visited website pages. The ads with the most engagement further defines if you are reaching the right audience with the right message.

Google Analytics can identify trends, or time periods, when the website has more traffic. Naturally, major milestones such as test dates and application deadlines will drive more traffic to your website, but there may be other spikes that indicate a marketing opportunity. Recognizing these patterns help devise a smart, strategic budget allocation for digital advertising.

Digital Advertising – digital advertising is a great way to reach potential students and Google Analytics can help.

Use the trend information on Google Analytics to determine when to allocate more of your budget to digital advertising. For example, if you see spikes in organic referral (people using a “search” tool) then increase your digital ad reach on a search engine for that time.

More than 90% of website visitors don’t act on the first visit so use retargeting advertising to remind visitors about your college or university. Retargeting advertisement places your ad in front of someone who has visited your website (even a specific page) for a determined amount of time. For example, if a someone visited the biology curriculum page than it is a good guess that they are interested in the field. Set up a retargeting ad with information about your excellent biology program and a call to action to bring the visitor back to your site for a second look.

Segmented Lists – Are you sending out digital cards or newsletters? Use the analytics gathered from the newsletters to customize your reach. For example, in the newsletter, create several calls to action, such as schedule a campus tour, talk to a representative or request an application. Set up the email program to segment the email list based on which call to action the person clicked. Depending on the email program, you can send a follow up ad or email with information based on their selection. Use the electronic newsletter to send readers to the website, or a specific page. Place a retargeting pixel on the webpage to keep your institution top of mind. Use Google Analytics to track your success and to hone your continued enrollment strategy.

Digital analytics can be daunting, but they provide critical insight on your marketing audience. Contact Enroll-U to help apply digital analytics to your marketing plan.

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