By Jeremy Tiers, Senior Director of Admissions Services
2 minute read
Here’s something I bring up when I lead recruiting workshops – You don’t have to tell prospective students everything all at once. You just need to say enough to create a conversation.
There’s a lot of value in aiming for responses over information.
With application deadlines upon us, I’m guessing you have a large group of senior inquiries and you want to find out why they’re hesitating on applying, coming to visit campus, or just in general why they seem to be disinterested.
Here are some direct questions you should consider asking in your upcoming emails, texts, and phone calls.
- Have you finished all your college applications or are you still putting together your list?
- What’s something that you think makes one college better than the rest?
- What is one thing you know your future college absolutely has to have?
- What do we need to talk about, or what do I need to show you before you’ll come and visit campus?
- What are the two or three biggest question marks now that you’ve seen campus and gotten more information?
- What’s the biggest thing that’s keeping you from starting your application?
- What are you still trying to figure out when you imagine yourself being a student here?
- What’s your biggest worry about going to college farther away from (or closer to) home?
- Why did you first get interested in us? What was it that made you think we could be a good fit?
- How can I make your college search easier?
If a student answers any of these with one or two words, or if they appear to be struggling to answer, follow up with a question that tells them what you think they might be thinking. Ex. Is the cost of <School Name> what’s keeping you from applying <First Name>?
Again, the primary goal should be to create engagement that leads to a conversation where they feel comfortable opening up to you…even if the result is the student telling you that your school just isn’t a good fit.
As the conversation winds down, your next step should be to ask if they’re ready to talk more about visiting campus or starting their application. Do not be afraid to bring this up after you’ve had some good back and forth dialogue.
Want to talk more about something I just said? Hit reply or connect with me here.
And if you found this article helpful, forward it to someone else in your campus community who could also benefit from reading it.