Colleges Need to Use MMS/SMS as a Part of its Enrollment Strategy

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Find out the BEST Ways to Use Text Messaging in Your Enrollment Strategy

Our main way of communicating with friends and family is often by text. But, surprisingly, many colleges, universities, and bootcamps are not using text messages as a communication tool.

For many colleges’s their website experiences can be so fragmented. If you review your website analytics, you may see that so many people go down different paths.  Why not collect’s someone information and then put them on an email and text message drip campaign where you control the experience, the messaging, and the

Check out the videos below I created for a fake university called Ellery University. I created this video to be shared via text message through MMS. I created this as an example of what your college can send students to keep them motivated throughout the enrollment process.  Sometimes if there are enough hurdles, you can feel despondent and need a bit of encouragement to keep going. enrollment process?

Stop running campaigns and start having conversations with prospective students.

Create a Lead Nurturing Email and Text Message Sequence

 

Lead nurturing is the process of developing relationships with prospective students at every stage of their decision process. The focus should be on understanding your prospective student’s needs and putting him or her on a communication track that will help answer their questions about your college and build value for your institution.

You can put people on different tracks. You can put prospective nursing students on a different track than business students or undecided students. 

Imagine you sent communications that said it’s ok to be undecided. That’s what college is for! We are here to help you figure out what is important to you, what you excel at, and to help you find your place in this world. And, then you provide support on how you would do this for them.

Your communication sequence should include a mix of text messagesemailsphone calls, and messenger communications

You may be able to eliminate direct mail or only send a unique piece at a certain part of the enrollment cycle. Imagine the savings and benefits to the environment.

 

SMS is the most preferred way for billions to communicate. Yes, your students prefer communicating via text message than with any channel. They prefer it, so let’s discuss how to do it!

The Power of Text Marketing SMS Stats

 

Send Encouraging Videos All Along the Enrollment Cycle

 

Check out this video we created to help show you the possibilities with MMS. MMS is where you send images or videos text messages. You can include text messages along with your video to communicate why he or she should watch the video and/or what action he or she should take after watching the video.

I’ve heard from many colleges that they feel sending text messages can feel spammy. There’s some good news on that front: It’s not!

Check out this video I created for a fake university called Ellery University. I created this video to be shared via text message through MMS. I created this as an example of what your college can send students to keep them motivated throughout the enrollment process.  Sometimes if there are enough hurdles, you can feel despondent and need a bit of encouragement to keep going. 

 

Here is Another Example Video to Keep Students Motivated While Filling out their Financial Aid 

 

To dig into a specific example mentioned above, what if your college sent a 30-second video by text messages (SMS or MMS) about what makes your college special, or an introduction from a popular Professor covering some exciting material? 

Text messages are opened at a 98% text message rate. If you send something engaging and valuable by text message, it’s almost a sure thing it will be seen. 

 

 

Send Engaging Communications

 

Enrollment Management Emails

Send your prospective students a few great videos via text message called MMS or a link to a video using SMS.

Or send them a few visuals that can help differentiate your school while building value and being welcoming.

Each touchpoint you create needs to have a purpose. Ask yourself, is this communication adding value?

Here are some example text topics to inspire you:

 
  • Communications differentiating my school (what makes your school special?)
  • Building value, sharing your social proof
  • Creating an inclusive and welcoming environment
  • Helping to answer their questions and objections
  • Video introductions from Financial Aid, Student Support, Orientation, Professors, Admissions Staff, Dean, College President, etc. 

 

You can also send out text communications to communicate: 

 
  • Specials or Deals  (no application fee between these dates or if you attend a webinar) 
  • Upcoming local events (networking opportunities) 
  • Enrollment deadlines (sparingly) 
  • Financial-aid deadlines (sparingly) 
  • Webinars
  • Brand-building communications
  • Covid updates
  • Safety updates
  • Referral requests
  • Survey requests 
  • and so much more

Here Is on Example of an Email Sequence: 

 
  • When a new inquiry comes in, send out a fantastic first email the moment their information is submitted. 
  • Then also send out a text message or two within 1-10 minutes of their submission.  And hopefully engage in 2-way dialogues with prospective students. 
  • Within 24 hours, follow-up with a phone call. 
  • Then over the course of the next few weeks, you will send a set of communications that tell your college’s story, build value for your institution, and help communicate why someone would want to enroll at your institution. 

However, it’s important to test if text messages or phone calls work better for your type of student. If you find text messages work better, then continue to refine your text message communication strategy; layer videos such as student testimonials, welcome messages from Professors, a day in the life of a student video, polls/surveys, and so much more. 

Again, your team will need to put on its Optimization Hat and test different communication tactics to see which ones resonate with your students. Maybe videos resonate more with nursing students, while more engagement opportunities resonate with business students. 

What is the right sequence for your text messages? 

What information will you convey?

You may think this is too much. 

But, let’s look at it this way if the prospective student came to your website to learn more about your school, and your communications are focused on helping him or her learn more about your school, and you are adding value with these communications, then it is not too much. Wow, that’s a run-on! 

If you start sending tons of apply now communications, then it probably is too much. 

If you are using a Higher Education CRM, then that CRM should be able to cue up all of these communications and automatically send them out. 

Yes, your staff will be able to focus on other things, while your Marketing Automation does all the hard work!

Check out this video we created to help show you the possibilities with MMS. MMS is where you send images or videos text messages. You can include text messages along with your video to communicate why he or she should watch the video and/or what action he or she should take after watching the video.

I’ve heard from many colleges that they feel sending text messages can feel spammy. There’s some good news on that front: It’s not.  

 

How Does MMS & SMS Look on Mobile Devices? 

 

Do you want to see MMS in action? Check out these screenshots to see how it looks on someone’s phone. I sent these videos to myself and took some screenshots. You can send a mixture of text messages and videos. These videos can feature your campus tour, or what makes your university special. You can put people on a text message drip campaign, which allows you to control the conversation and send your prospective students communications about enrolling.

MMS Text Message Example

 

 

Higher Ed Enrollment Strategy Tips Using Text Messaging SMS and MMS

 

You can run the following types of SMS/MMS Campaigns:

 
  • Brand building (what makes your campus or school special?)
  • Automatic reminders (reduce your no-shows!!)
  • Campus activity notifications
  • Automated enrollment documentation that needs to be completed including Financial aid
  • Appointment confirmation and follow-p
  • Campus event notification and invitations
  • Retention campaigns
  • Re-enrollment campaigns
  • Share student testimonials
  • Financial aid information
  • Answer questions
  • Referral requests
  • Send promotions and scholarship information
  • Celebrate holidays
  • Congratulate students on achievements and exam completions
  • Share student and staff success stories
  • Share hiring or graduate success stories
  • Share College or University achievements
  • the list can go on and on

 

SMS/ MMS Reminder Strategy 

 

Implementing a simple SMS or MMS reminder strategy can increase those show-up rates significantly…helping more prospective students make their appointments and therefore increasing their likelihood of becoming your next enrollment.

What if you sent her an emotional text message that helps solidify why they should show up for her scheduled time? Or a video introduction from their Admissions Rep that tells her a little bit of what they will cover on their call today. Would that be compelling?  Does it also sound like a lot of work?

It doesn’t have to be with Ynot! You can create these assets once and then Ynot will send these communications out for you based on a set of rules you provide.

A picture is worth a thousand words, and a video is worth a thousand pictures.

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