1) Higher Education Marketing is a business of "recruiting successful alumni." We sometimes say that we help convert recruits into applicants, applicants into students, students into raving fans, and alumni into lifelong brand ambassadors.
2) Higher Ed institutions are in the business of creating a "total educational experience." What happens in the classroom is just one aspect. Community building, personal growth, leadership development, life skills development, and career readiness are all components of the "product" higher ed marketers are delivering. That's why all departments are involved in marketing in some capacity, because they all have the ability to impact student satisfaction. You name a department at a college/university, we've worked with it!
3) In that vein, marketing tactics can be used successfully to achieve goals institution-wide. Great example of Marketing supporting Financial Aid: One school engaged their Marketing department to produce eye-catching lawn signs and to geofence campus with digital ads reminding students of FAFSA form filing deadlines. This led to significantly higher open rates on emails relating to filing, and virtually no late filers!
4) Brand Alignment institution-wide is vital. One AMA presenter used a great example: If I throw six golf balls at you at once, how many will you be able to catch? The same goes for brand messaging. One set of overarching core values, brand promises and unique value propositions (and brand standards!) university-wide. Each individual school (and department) within the university can have their own focus within those confines. This principle was the impetus for our “Doubletake Defenders” mascot and “Defending Your Brand” tagline for our “Doubletake University” moniker!
5) Are you prepared for the 2026 "Demographic Cliff?" The 2008 financial downturn caused a decline in birth rates in subsequent years, which will result in fewer 18-year-olds in the applicant pool starting in 2026. This is hugely important. Marketing strategy will be as important as ever to capture market share, and schools must be planning accordingly NOW. We've seen some of our clients already addressing this approach and tapping into expanding student markets (1st generation college students, adult students, transfer programs, Hispanic and other growing population groups, and more). How can we help you with this strategic planning?
6) Digital Marketing of Higher Ed should reflect an e-commerce experience. When consumers shop online they are accustomed to the speed and simplicity of the typical e-commerce customer journey. The same is true of prospective students and parents who research educational institutions online. Focus on creating this experience in your online content, and on the navigation of your website.