Webinar – Building Student Profiles: 3 Steps to Meeting The Demands Of Today’s Students

I’ve been presenting on the topic of student profiles at several education industry events, including the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC) 2010 Annual Conference, as well as the New York Association of Proprietary Colleges (APC) Annual Conference. The audiences have shown quite a bit of interest in the topic, as has the trade press. It occurred to me that a number of our blog readers may be interested in the topic, therefore, I’m hosting a webinar next week.

The purpose of the webinar is to help schools embrace the power of student profiles in order to drive increased recruitment and retention. “The Increasing Power of the Student Consumer: Building Student Profiles to Meet The Demands Of Today’s Students” will be held on Thursday, September 23, 2010 from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

Colleges are continually evaluating efforts to: recruit the types of students who will be most successful in a program, quickly launch new programs, and tailor offerings and delivery modes. How can colleges successfully meet these challenges in order to attract and retain students in an increasingly consumer-driven market?

I’ll share three critical ways that colleges can best leverage information to meet the demands of today’s students:

1) Deliver education where and when students want it.
2) Monitor student inflection points.
3) Report on student activity from prospect to placement in order to support decisions.

Attendees will gain insight into the process of not only building student profiles, but also effectively using them. Profiles help schools better understand students so you can target the right students for the right programs, as well as support them throughout the education process, making sure that someone who is likely to succeed actually does.

To register for the free event, click here. Feel free to download the corresponding whitepaper and eBook as well.

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Student Profiles: Part I

Student profiles continue to come up in my daily conversations with college administrators. There seems to be such a huge opportunity here – it is just a matter of a school wrapping its arms around the data they have and embracing the concept of student profiles as a powerful tool to better understand and support their students.

Student profiles enable your college to better determine the programs, delivery models and educational structure that will attract and retain students. Today, I’d like to address student profiles from a college prospecting and marketing perspective.

Colleges and universities are in a sea of noise – in order to increase student enrollment, they need to find a way to stand out in the crowd, and also make sure they are targeting
the right students for the right programs.

Traditionally, colleges and universities address student recruitment by increasing marketing efforts – utilizing additional marketing channels, allocating additional budget for traditional and social media, and more. However, additional outreach doesn’t always equate to more leads. Rather, colleges need to know more about the students they are targeting.

When building successful student profiles, you should look at the available demographic, behavioristic/psychographic, and educational information on a student prospect. You then need to assign a risk factor to each characteristic. For example, a prospect with established career goals would most likely pose a “low” risk, yet that same prospect could be transitional and not stay in one place for long periods of time, posing a “high” risk. You’ll want to establish an average overall risk level based on a comprehensive list of his or her characteristics.

Next, you should assign a complete profile to a student prospect and determine whether to actively pursue that person as a prospective student, and if so, develop action plans as necessary. For example, if a prospect has an overall risk factor rating of “high” due to the fact that he or she is a single parent who is working part time, your action plan can address child care.

Student profiles help colleges better target students who will likely succeed in your programs. But they serve another purpose beyond getting students in the door. Student profiles can drive retention too, so you can make sure that someone who is likely to succeed actually does. I plan to talk about student profiles from a retention perspective in my next blog…so stay tuned.

In the meantime, feel free to check out my eBook, “How to Make Informed Decisions Based on Successful Student Profiles: Seven Steps to Increase Recruitment and Retention.”

I will also be hosting a webinar to discuss Student Profiles in depth on September 23rd. If you are interested, you can click here to register.