HobsonsU 2012 Presentation: Face the (Country) Music: Utilizing Connect to Measure ROI and Stop Wasting your Resources


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My presentation from the Hobsons University 2012 conference on Tuesday, July 17, 2012.

We all struggle with allocating limited resources for our recruitment efforts and convincing the "powers that be" that we need more. In this light, determining ROI is critical to strategic planning efforts. This session will discuss how you can leverage Connect to appropriately assess your student demographic to appropriately select lead sources, more effectively capture and track leads, and measure ROI for each of your lead sources. A comprehensive referral source process and policy will be discussed.

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HobsonsU 2012 Presentation: Face the (Country) Music: Utilizing Connect to Measure ROI and Stop Wasting your Resources

  1. 1. Face the (Country) Music:Utilizing Connect to Measure ROIand Stop Wasting your Resources Marcus HanscomAssociate Director of Graduate Recruitment and Outreach University of New Haven July 17, 2012
  2. 2. Agenda• Introduction• Assessing where we are• Building the funnel• Engaging prospective students• Measuring ROI• Q&A / Online Evaluation @MarcusHanscom
  3. 3. University of New Haven• Private, nonprofit university in West Haven, CT• 4,600 undergraduate/1,800 graduate students• Centralized graduate admissions• Grad using Connect, AY, VIP• Client since December 2007 @MarcusHanscom
  4. 4. Learning Outcome for Today• We will recruit more efficiently and deliver higher ROI if we: – Evaluate our current student base – Use student information to make educated decisions on marketing channels and relevant messaging – AND track student data throughout the funnel including activity on our website, social media @MarcusHanscom
  5. 5. The “Informed” ROI Process Assess Incoming/ Current Students Lead Tracking Generation Funnel Management /Marketing/ Recruitment @MarcusHanscom
  6. 6. “All my exes live in Texas…”THE FOUNDATIONS
  7. 7. Consider leadership…“Know thyself… and others.” @MarcusHanscom
  8. 8. Your existing funnel• Assess the demographics of prospective students – Geographic Origin? – Male/Female ratio? – Previous major? – Referral Source?• In an ideal world, assess by program – Easier for decentralized admissions @MarcusHanscom
  9. 9. Assignment #1• Create a “demographic dashboard” – Utilize a broad filter for all reports • Ie. All graduate students for fall 2012 – Potential reports • International /Domestic Breakdown • Gender Breakdown • Applicants by State (Geo-targeting) • Applicants by Source (ROI) • Applicants by program – Use dashboard attribute filtering @MarcusHanscom
  10. 10. Dashboard Filtering• Customize data reporting in real-time• Helpful attributes: – Gender – State (Geographic Origin) – International/Domestic – Referral Source – Status – Funnel Status @MarcusHanscom
  11. 11. Inaccurate Funnel Tracking
  12. 12. Accurate Funnel Tracking @MarcusHanscom
  13. 13. How we fix the funnel• Bulk edit based on current status – Populate all related options in a separate attribute: Funnel Status @MarcusHanscom
  14. 14. Helpful Bulk Edits• Funnel Status• Program name – Collect concentrations under one title if necessary• College name – Filter with related college programs• Use for dashboard filtering @MarcusHanscom
  15. 15. Food for Thought• Is there a correlation between those that apply? Enroll?• Are particular sources more productive?• Are certain groups benefitting from custom communication plans? Support? @MarcusHanscom
  16. 16. Assignment #2• Conduct a program demographic assessment – Age/Gender, state, domestic origin – Referral Source – Previous Major• Filter dashboard by program for data ease• Present to program faculty – Engage faculty in process if not already – Are faculty using Connect on your campus? – Faculty buy-in is crucial @MarcusHanscom
  17. 17. Sample: M.S.E.D. Applicants @MarcusHanscom
  18. 18. Sample Engineering Applicants @MarcusHanscom
  19. 19. “I’m proud of the house we built…”BUILDING THE FUNNEL
  20. 20. Generating Awareness• That’s so 2001… – Printed Directories – Bulk Snail Mailings – Cold Calling – Newspaper tombstone ads @MarcusHanscom
  21. 21. Generating Awareness• …but this is so 2012 – Directory Sites (Gradschools.com, Petersons.com, GraduateGuide.com…) – University Website – Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, FourSquare…) – Google/search engines – Blogs – Virtual Information Sessions/Chats – Open Houses @MarcusHanscom
  22. 22. The key question is…Is it trackable?
  23. 23. Lead Sources• Purchased Lists • Open Houses• Directory Sites • Webinars/Chats• Social Media • Word of Mouth• University Website • Click-thru campaigns• Search Engines • Mailings/BRC (Paid and Organic) • …and more• Graduate Fairs/Visits @MarcusHanscom
  24. 24. Purchased Lists• Importing into Connect?• Critical to prevent purchased leads from getting into communication plans for true inquiries – Unsolicited vs. solicited interest• What triggers the inquiry? – VIP pages are a great option @MarcusHanscom
  25. 25. Key Questions• What is the total budget allocated to generating leads?• Are lead generation techniques/processes customized by program?• What role do faculty members play? Administrators?• How do you manage your prospect leads versus your inquiries? @MarcusHanscom
  26. 26. Assignment #3• Do a lead generation audit – List all current lead sources and costs – Identify financial goals: spend more or less? – Are you doing some things because “that is what we always do?” – Just the basics: How many students are applying or enrolling from each source? (Dashboard) @MarcusHanscom
  27. 27. Where are you sending prospective students?• Generic page on your site?• An inquiry form?• A specific landing page for just the leads from a particular source?• A specific inquiry form? @MarcusHanscom
  28. 28. https://newhavengrad.askadmissions.net/emtinterestpage.aspx?ip=interest&src=152& program=EMGMT @MarcusHanscom
  29. 29. Assignment #4• Set up Unique Source Pages – Set up landing pages or inquiry forms unique to each lead source – Create vanity urls (ie. www.newhaven.edu/nytimes) for print advertising – Create pages for your generic lead generation and for event advertising management – Pursue potential custom options with Hobsons @MarcusHanscom
  30. 30. A Referral Source Policy• Define your data captures – Created source, how did you hear?, Referral Source, Lead source (custom pages)• Create attributes to centrally collect data• Identify means of collecting: – Specific sources – Broad source categories @MarcusHanscom
  31. 31. Bulk Edits• Move each data set from source attributes into one attribute (ie. Referral Source)• Use new attribute to help further “funnel” sources into broad attribute (Referral Source Category)• Use broad attribute to get a pulse on what channels work or need improvement @MarcusHanscom
  32. 32. Referral Source CollectionCreated SourceHow did you hearof us? Referral Referral Source Source CategoryLead Source (HobsonsCustom) @MarcusHanscom
  33. 33. Referral Source Category Collection International GRE Search Search Names Names International GMAT Search Hobsons Names Leads Purchased Lists @MarcusHanscom
  34. 34. Assignment #5• Create a referral source policy – How do you accurately report where students came from? – Identify how the created source versus a “How did you hear about us?” question will vary in your data• Create one data set/attribute to collect this data – Greatly reduces reporting headaches @MarcusHanscom
  35. 35. Would your VP like this… @MarcusHanscom
  36. 36. …or this? @MarcusHanscom
  37. 37. “I’m here for the party…”ENGAGING PROSPECTS
  38. 38. Keys to Success• Automated Communication Plan• Relevant Messaging• Cross-channel messaging with common brand message• Regular social media participation• Personalization whenever and wherever possible @MarcusHanscom
  39. 39. Communication Plan• Automation = efficiency – Particularly for small offices – Does not necessarily mean impersonal• Integrated marketing opportunities – Letters, emails, VIP pages – Phone call management• Ensure communication consistency to all audiences @MarcusHanscom
  40. 40. Relevant Messaging• Students want personalization• Avoid the fluff communications• Provide program information as soon as possible – Preferably through multiple channels – mail, email, phone• Clear, succinct, “What’s in it for me?” communications Initial Email Communication Interaction Rates General 4% Program-Specific 20% @MarcusHanscom
  41. 41. Tips for Email• Toss out the “HTML graphic email” is king mentality – Keep in mind personalization, smart phones – Perception of your message Counselor Email Interaction Rates HTML 0.25% Plain text 6%• Send one-time emails to targeted audiences with program-related news @MarcusHanscom
  42. 42. Social Media• Engaging students on SM means exactly that – Regular interactions – Go beyond the “press release” posts• Remember the audiences for each platform• Create opportunities to request information, learn more, “see” your experience• Hobsons can create interest form for iframes (Facebook) @MarcusHanscom
  43. 43. “You got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em…”MEASURING ANDUTILIZING RESULTS
  44. 44. Measuring Results• Results in Connect – Email Results (Open rate, interactions) Email Interaction Rates General 4% Program-Specific 20% – VIP page results• Source Coding (Referrals)• Unique Landing Pages w/tracking• Google Analytics (or other software) @MarcusHanscom
  45. 45. VIP results• 8% of all visitors clicked an “Apply Now” link • 59% of those completed and submitted an application• Average visits per user: 5.7• Average login time: 27 minutes• 6,245 active visitors in last 12 months• 1,267 engaged visitors (20%) @MarcusHanscom
  46. 46. Google Analytics• Hobsons can put university code on interest pages• Request to have redirect to your site• Use goal gauges to determine percentage of traffic completing form @MarcusHanscom
  47. 47. Assignment #6• Become a user on Google Analytics – Learn how to find your specific site content – Evaluate metrics as a whole – No single metric on its own is helpful• Use metrics to make educated decisions about page content – Do you need to adjust content on your admissions pages? Program pages? – Would new landing pages help? @MarcusHanscom
  48. 48. Tips on Tracking• Minimize options on how students get to your website – Tracking does little good if you have too much to track• Use vanity URL’s for ease of use or hidden tracking URL’s• Use short inquiry forms if directing students there first• K.I.S.S.• All tracking involves a grain of salt @MarcusHanscom
  49. 49. Utilizing Results• Allocation of financial and human resources• Development of new channels/expansion of current ones• Strategic advertising timing• Strategic planning for links/awareness• Restructure/rewrite existing content @MarcusHanscom
  50. 50. A Starting ROI Argument• Avg. Rev/Student x # enrolled from source = Estimated Total Revenue/Source – Can simplify numbers by funnel status – Determine the “value” of a given inquiry or applicant• Compare revenue to annual spend per source – Is your return worth the investment? @MarcusHanscom
  51. 51. ROI ExampleDirectory Listing College Fairs• Avg. Total Revenue/student = $25,000 • Avg. Total Revenue/student =• Students enrolled = 10 $25,000• Total revenue from source= $250,000 • Students enrolled = 2• Annual Directory spend: $32,000 • Total revenue from source=• ROI: 681% $50,000 • Annual Travel Spend: $30,000 • ROI: 67%**Remember this is using a gross revenue figure. @MarcusHanscom
  52. 52. Assignment #7• Assign revenue to lead sources and determine estimated ROI – Gross revenue is a start – Determine average revenue/student • Can be most helpful at program level – Can compare to other sources by percentage return on the dollar @MarcusHanscom
  53. 53. Assignment Review1. Create a “Demographic Dashboard”2. Conduct a program demographic assessment3. Do a lead generation audit4. Set up unique source pages5. Create a referral source policy6. Become a user on Google Analytics (and use it)7. Assign revenue to lead sources for ROI @MarcusHanscom
  54. 54. Final Thoughts• None of this happens overnight• Need commitment of human (and in some cases, financial) resources• Involve faculty if not already doing so• Be adaptable @MarcusHanscom
  55. 55. Breakout Session #4: Face the (Country) Marcus HanscomMusic: Utilizing Connect to Measure ROI MHanscom@newhaven.eduand Stop Wasting your Resources 203.932.7277 Twitter: @MarcusHanscomhttp://www.eventmobi.com/HU2012(Evaluations Tab, Session Evaluations)http://www.hobsonsuniversity.com/surveys(Breakout Session Evaluations Section) Questions? THANK YOU.