Colleges should boost their online marketing and recruitment efforts to reach prospective students who are increasingly exploring schools via a variety of online platforms, advises a new white paper by EAB titled “Recruiting in an Era of Channel Overload."
Warning that the population of college-bound students is projected to fall by as much as 11% over the next decade, the paper recommends institutions use a "sophisticated mix" of digital recruiting channels in order to meet enrollment targets. Those channels include college search sites, social platforms and self-directed virtual tours — all of which students and families are using to find schools, says EAB.
“Today’s enrollment professionals need to understand how and when students and their families interact with these disparate channels and what opportunities those interaction points present to them,” said Chris Marett, president of EAB marketing and enrollment solutions. “And they need to master an increasingly complex mix of recruitment tactics now, before they are forced to feel the full effects of declining college enrollments."
In strengthening their digital presence, colleges can also reach student populations they may not normally interact with, especially those who live in distant or remote geographic areas, says the paper. A best practices firm, EAB offers strategies for assembling "a comprehensive portfolio of digital channels" to better "identify and engage students who are increasingly hard to reach via conventional recruiting processes" in the paper.