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Support Your Enrollment Strategy with CRM

Denise Groves

Strategic Consultant, Campus Management

What should you consider when implementing a CRM Strategy?

In implementing a CRM strategy, it is important that you think big, but start small. Strategic Enrollment Planning (SEP) is a necessary prerequisite to CRM deployment. So is doing your due diligence, as well as researching and identifying the unique ways schools are utilizing CRM to meet their recruitment and retention objectives.

Why is Strategic Enrollment Planning (SEP) so important?

It is important to institutions because today’s higher education marketplace is characterized by unprecedented choice for students—and new levels of competition for institutions.

Why is Strategic Enrollment Planning a “MUST”?

  • It fosters long-term enrollment and fiscal health
  • It provides realistic, quantifiable goals for student recruitment, student success, and the market position of your campus.
  • delivers clearly defined, cost-effective results by using a return-on-investment and action-item approach.
  • It aligns your institution's mission and its current state with the changing market environment

Should an institution develop and implement a strategic enrollment management plan?

Yes, develop a plan that aligns with and supports the university’s strategic plan, mission, and vision to provide sound recommendations on an optimal enrollment profile and matters influencing achievement of enrollment goals.

How can an institution prepare for Strategic Enrollment Planning and achieve a 360 degree view of student relationships?

Recruiting and Admissions Goal: Develop and implement a strategic communications flow

  • Objective: Implement CRM on campus to improve communication throughout the student lifecycle through implementation of Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) strategies

Student Success Goal: Develop and implement strategies to identify and mitigate student attrition thru strategic communications flow

  • Objectives: Identify factors that cause students to drop-out or stop-out and improve year-over-year persistence rates

Are there any guiding principles for a Strategic Communication Flow?

  • Focus your institution’s communications on real students’ needs
  • Contextualize communications to reflect a student’s place in the student lifecycle
  • Guide students proactively, not reactively

Key Takeaway: When you put students first and support them through communications, they make it possible for both students and your institution as a whole to grow.

Is there a recipe for the development of a Student-Centric Strategic Communications Flow?

  • Think through the communications at various enrollment stages—inquiry, applicant, admit, deposit, enrollment, graduation.
  • Progress students to the next enrollment stage regardless of where they enter the flow
  • Tailor communications to each student’s position in the student lifecycle
  • Focus your electronic communications wisely. It is best to invite communication in addition to delivering information. Create communication strategies that put students’ needs first.

What should be considered when implementing a Strategic Communication Flow?

  • Create communication plans that reach target groups of students with relevant and timely messaging, depending on specific needs and challenges.
  • Get parents involved in the flow. According to Ruffalo Noel Levitz E-Expectations research, 60 percent of prospective students’ parents are involved with the college research process.
  • Communicate strategically to promote student success, and ultimately to improve retention and enrollment.

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