March 13 2017

As the recruiting cycle reaches a frenzied pace during the spring semester, how are you preparing for fall enrollment?

Here is a checklist of strategies to make sure you’re maximizing fall enrollment.  If your class isn’t shaping up as you would like, there are several things you can do to make a difference because its important to remember that every student matters

If you don’t have one, creating a 90-day plan will provide great guidance for your admission team and ensure you have solid steps in place to finish this recruitment cycle with focus and a sense of urgency. 

Consider this list of follow-up suggestions:

1. Follow Up Promptly on New Inquiries

New inquiries at this time of the year tend to be buyers, not shoppers, so make an immediate phone follow-up to gauge interest, target your response, and encourage a prompt application. Who has inquired in the last two months and not applied?

2. Pay Special Attention to Recent Visitors 

Who has visited campus and not applied? Focus especially on those seniors who have recently visited your campus.  Believe it or not, they may not have made a final decision about where to enroll. Campus visits are the best indicator of strong interest typically, so reminding them of a great visit and digging into their experience if they’re deciding not to apply has value to both drive the numbers and tune up your campus guest experience.

3. Focus on FAFSA Applicants

Who has submitted a FAFSA and not applied?  Unless they listed your code number in error they are interested, so follow up ASAP.  Do you have any students who have been selected for verification who have not submitted the appropriate paperwork?

4. Communicate with Family Members

Have you sent a letter “to the family of” Susie Q with deposit and/or registration information to ensure the probability that their parents will be aware of the urgency and process for confirming a place in this fall’s class?  Relying too much on emails to students is not always the best approach. Credo’s admitted student research indicates that parents are the strongest personal influencers on which college a student chooses.

5. Don't Discount Faculty and Staff Dependents

What about faculty/staff dependents?  They may not bring net tuition given tuition benefits, but their parents will appreciate the extra encouragement (and perhaps look more favorably on your recruitment efforts in general).

6. Circle Back With Top Feeder Organizations

How about some of your top feeder high schools, churches, and other groups?  This might be a good time to touch base with student influencers in these settings to see if they know of one or two students who would be great fits, have yet to apply, and are still looking. 

7. Check in With Students Who Haven't Found the Right Fit

It’s the time of the year where admitted student days take place on campuses. Sometimes these days help students see the place they’ve tentatively chosen isn’t quite right for them.  When they come home from a day like this they often seek counsel from trusted advisors on alternatives, and your call might hit these influencers at just the right time.

Also, consider some of the following questions when developing a plan to maximize student enrollment in the fall:

  • Who has given you a piece of the application process but not the application itself?
  • Have you asked coaches, faculty, or other co-curricular advisors to verify their lists of expected deposits?
  • What does your predictive model tell you about those most likely to enroll who have yet to commit?
  • Have your admission counselors identified and prioritized the admitted students they think are most likely to enroll?
  • Who is left on your territory top 100 lists – are there any students your counselors expected to apply?
  • What about siblings, legacies, and other high yielding groups?
  • What about transfer students?  Do you have solid strategies in place for ensuring a seamless application process for these students during the summer months?

Enrollment Solutions with Credo

This is the time of the year where gaining a few more students matters greatly.  Also, think of each student as a stone you do not want to leave unturned. Remember— every student matters!

To learn more about how to maximize yields, even late in the game, contact an enrollment expert at Credo!enrollment

Tim Fuller:

Will Lee:

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