By Jeremy Tiers, Director of Admissions Services
Here are a few things that I believe are often overlooked and undervalued in life – Giving context, your mindset, and the importance of consistency. Successful people, leaders, and teams tend to be three for three.
In today’s article I want to focus on that last one with you. Without consistency, even the best enrollment management plans (or individual territory plans) tend to fail. And that’s without an extreme crisis like coronavirus.
Your recruiting and marketing messages (i.e. the stories you’re telling and the value points and updates you’re offering), the variety of message mediums you’re using, the consistency with which you’re communicating, and your other recruiting habits can help you successfully navigate this new normal and keep things moving forward.
I’m seeing that play out right now. Colleges and Universities that we’ve partnered with and helped maintain regular communication with prospective students and parents/families before and during this current crisis, really haven’t skipped a beat. Same thing goes for others in my newsletter community. It’s been exciting to jump on FaceTime/Zoom or get a message on Twitter and hear about the good things that are happening because of consistency.
On the flipside, many of those who haven’t been telling their story and communicating in a personal way every 6-9 days like students tell us they want, are finding added frustration, stress, and roadblocks right now. You can’t expect consistent recruiting results if your actions have been inconsistent.
The longer and more consistent your messaging and communications are, the more it creates a balance in the minds of prospective students, parents, and families. When they clearly understand things like how your college/university is different, what makes your student experience unique and better, how your professors are continuing to help/mentor current students even with online learning, and why your degree is going to be an advantage for them after they graduate, they’re less likely to second-guess themselves, even when a crisis comes along.
Besides maintaining your message, consistency also:
- Gives students, parents, and families a predictable flow of information
- Creates connections and helps build trust
- Reinforces how serious and important the student is
- Helps to prompt a response/action when you engage
When it comes to your recruiting habits, here are some fundamental things that should be a part of your daily/weekly routine both now and in the future:
- Personalization always and in all ways.
- Demonstrate empathy.
- Ask about their wants, needs, fears and concerns.
- Be prepared to lead the conversation and ask intentional questions.
- Quick, concise communication no matter the medium. Avoid all the fluff.
- Don’t sound robotic. Be less formal and have a regular conversation.
- Always remember it should be a two-way conversation. Be a good listener.
- Explain the why or the because (especially when trying to set up phone calls).
- Avoid using admissions jargon and big words.
- Be easy to talk to. That includes the text and sentence structure in your emails.
- Be a resource, not a salesperson.
- Make parents/family members an asset, not an obstacle.
With all of the extra unknowns in the recruiting landscape, trusting the process and remaining consistent with your communication and habits will be critical in the weeks and months ahead. Don’t get caught up looking for the immediate ROI.
Want to talk more about your messaging and communication, or anything else in this article? Email me and we’ll set up a quick call or schedule time to jump on FaceTime/Zoom.
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