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Inbound Enrollment Marketing: The New Strategy in Student Recruitment

Annie Ryland

We’ve got a thought experiment for enrollment managers.

Imagine if your university or program came to life one day as a person. Suddenly, in your office, you are chatting with a living, breathing person who embodies all the ideas, energy, and unique personality of your institution. And this person wants nothing more than to form some deep human connections.

When your living institution tells you that he wants to go out on the street corner, start yelling about how awesome he is, and how he’s looking for connection, you’re horrified. This is not the way to make friends.

Since you understand human beings and how they connect, you explain to your institution immediately that getting to know someone takes time and that usually friendships are formed over common interests, where two people can interact around something they both love or are interested in.

You also explain that you can’t force relationships, and that no two relationships will look exactly alike. Friends adapt to each other, starting with general topics and moving slowly toward more detailed or personal conversations — in a way that is natural and organic; not forced.

You should avoid yelling on a street corner...

Simple but silly so far?

Let’s bring this back down to earth. Student recruitment can seem increasingly difficult in today’s crowded and competitive education landscape. The direct, outbound marketing strategies--the equivalent of yelling at a street corner--that once worked just aren’t delivering for you anymore.

In order to meet and surpass your goals for student recruitment and in order to find students who are the right fit for your institution, you need a new way of thinking about enrollment management/marketing. You need a paradigm shift that uses advanced technology and simple principles we all understand from our human relationships.

Introducing Inbound Enrollment Marketing

For many institutions--large and small, Inbound Enrollment Marketing has been that shift. Inbound Enrollment Marketing is a holistic marketing methodology that combines and integrates educational content, conversion strategies, and marketing technology in order to attract and engage with qualified web traffic.

This holistic methodology allows your institution to develop natural relationships over time with prospects based on their individual behavior and interests, in the same way that all relationships develop.

Here's how it works:

  • Educational content promoted through your blogs, resources, and social media shares your institution’s thought leadership and attracts like-minded or interested suspects.
  • Customized conversion strategies are integrated into all your content so that prospects are nurtured toward application at their own pace.
  • Marketing technology allows you to track detailed information about how a prospect is engaging with your content and to personalize your marketing efforts based on their interests. Marketing automation tools also increase your yield rate while saving your busy team time and effort.

Inbound Enrollment Marketing is the marketing system that allows you to think about your institution as a person that you are introducing to a prospective student, hoping and working hard to ensure that the two will hit it off and get to know each other.

We understand instinctively how connection works in human relationships. It’s time to leverage that kind of gut knowledge to transform how you think about your work of student recruitment.

Need help? We've got the perfect resource for you.

At DD, we know how tough it can be to face the changing face of enrollment marketing and feel empowered.

This is why we’ve created a rich resource entirely devoted to the helping you understand Inbound Enrollment Marketing and what it can do to help you #SlayYourGiants.

Inbound Enrollment Marketing: the new strategy in student recruitment

Here’s a quick rundown of what we cover in this digital resource:

Whatever challenge you are facing, we are eager to help. If you’re interested in learning more about how to use Inbound Enrollment Marketing for your institution, reach out to us today!

Are you an enrollment manager looking for a fresh take on marketing for student recruitment? If so, we invite you to check out our free digital resource: Everything Enrollment Managers Need to Know About Inbound Enrollment Marketing.

Topics: Enrollment Marketing, Inbound Marketing

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