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Enrollment Management Office of Catholic Schools Maria Ippolito Director of School Marketing and Communications

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Presentation on theme: "Enrollment Management Office of Catholic Schools Maria Ippolito Director of School Marketing and Communications"— Presentation transcript:

1 Enrollment Management Office of Catholic Schools Maria Ippolito mippolito@archchicago.org Director of School Marketing and Communications mippolito@archchicago.org

2 MORE KIDS IN GREAT CATHOLIC SCHOOLS

3 Great Catholic Schools – The ‘Customer Experience’ Catholic Identity Where GREAT exists, the stage is set for successful enrollment marketing.

4

5 The OCS Marketing Team KK Cleland Juana Sanchez Graber Maria Ippolito Yasmin Quiroz

6 The Portal  A collection of resources and best practices surrounding the enrollment management framework.  http://ocs.archchicago.org/SchoolVitality/MarketingEnrollment.aspx http://ocs.archchicago.org/SchoolVitality/MarketingEnrollment.aspx More Kids…

7 Archdiocesan Marketing Enrollment Network More Kids… Sharing what works from outside experts and internal success stories

8 Monthly Enrollment Marketing Calendar and Newsletter Keeping you up to date on: Current topics Helpful hints Spotlight on success stories Reminders http://bit.ly/pastnewsletters OCS More Kids…

9 AMEN Monthly Webinars More Kids… All webinars are from 12:00- 1:00 CST

10 Marketing Building interest in enrolling in the schools New Family Sales Getting new families to enroll Retention Sales Getting existing families to re-enroll Enrollment Management Framework, Plan and Teams Enrollment Management Teams comprised of teachers, parents, leaders, marketing staff, parishioners More Kids…

11 ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT FRAMEWORK Marketing i.e., Building interest in enrolling in the schools Define Target Audience Define / Refine Compelling Value Proposition Communicate with Parents & Community Create & Execute Retention Strategy Determine Pricing Strategy New Family Sales i.e., Getting new families to enroll Call Handling & Registration Procedure Lead Follow-Up Procedure Objection Handling Financial Aid Retention Sales i.e., Getting existing families to re-enroll Ongoing Communications to School Families Enlist Students in Retention Strategy Enlist Faculty in Retention Strategy Financial Aid Objection Handling Assessment i.e., How did our plans and activities work? Did we meet our goals? Academic Product, Service Delivery, Environment, and Programs

12 Marketing i.e., Building interest in enrolling in the schools “Why should I spend my money to send my child to your school?” Define / Refine Compelling Value Proposition Why would our target market choose to enroll? What differentiates our school, what are our proof points? What’s our pricing strategy? How do we most effectively make our case (text, images, video, pulpit, etc.)? Who is most effective? What’s actual today and what’s aspirational? What do our best advocates say? Our worst critics? Define Target Audience Who are we trying to attract? What do they want? How do we target our RE/CCD families? Is our Parish enough? Other Parishes without schools? What about non-Catholics? What’s our admission policy? Communicate with Parents & Community How can we most effectively reach our targets? When? How does our web site play into the strategy? What other marketing deliverables do we need? What role do teachers, parents, etc. play? How can we get everyone to stay on message with our value proposition? Create & Execute Retention Strategy In reality this requires many of the same actions as described above, but directed at existing parents Need to continually reinforce why they made the right decision and are receiving value Teachers play a big role in retention Determine Pricing Strategy What is our target market’s ability to pay? What is the willingness to pay for our product? How do we handle tuition assistance? How do we incent new families and retention? “CATHOLIC AND SAFE” ISN’T ENOUGH ANY MORE; MAY NEED TO MARKET BEYOND JUST THE PARISH

13 “Will I enroll my child?” We spend so much energy on marketing; can we really count on making a one-call close? New Family Sales i.e., Getting new families to enroll Collect prospective family information Ensure that we stay on message with value proposition Ensure that we have a call to action (e.g., visit) Ensure that family has clear and supportive way to progress through registration process Call Handling & Registration Procedure Families need to hear multiple times that they are wanted – from multiple people – Principal, teacher, other family member, potentially another student Follow-up communications need to be purposeful – 1 st call says X, 2 nd call says Y, etc. Ideally, follow up occurs within 1 day Every inquiry is a relationship building opportunity, not just a phone call Lead Follow-Up Procedure What objections do we expect to receive and how should we handle them? Ensure that communicators have a good answer that’s consistent with the value proposition How do we answer the tuition question in such a way as to get to the next conversation? Objection Handling Follows from our tuition strategy We need an objective, confidential process We need to communicate to families that we will work with them – the alternative is that they assume that we’re unaffordable Every family should be treated individually, based on their individual circumstances Financial Aid FAMILIES ARE CUSTOMERS – WE NEED TO TREAT THEM THAT WAY

14 “Was our experience good enough to re-enroll my child?” Retention Sales i.e., Getting existing families to re-enroll Families need to hear multiple times about all the good things going on Every communication is a chance to reinforce the value of Catholic education and your school Ongoing Communications to School Families Families respond to what their children want Students can have a very important role in parents’ decisions to return or not Vibrant schools have students excited to return each day Enlist Students in Retention Strategy Similar to objection handling for new families, with two important differences Some objections may be family-specific based on the specific experience of that family Some objections may require a degree of specificity and frankness appropriate as family knows the “dirt” Requires leadership to know family situations Objection Handling Similar to financial aid for new families Knowledge of family situations gives schools an opportunity to be proactive … being proactive can significantly and positively impact the relationship Financial Aid Enlist Faculty in Retention Strategy Faculty also plays an important role – in general and with regard to retention at specific grades School leadership needs to enlist staff in the retention effort to both act as early warning systems and to take specific actions IF WE CAN’T RE-ENROLL EXISTING FAMILIES AT A HIGH RATE, WHY WOULD NEW FAMILIES ENROLL AT ALL?

15 AS WITH ANY OTHER KEY PRIORITY, WE MUST ASSESS THE IMPACT OF OUR ACTIONS & IMPROVE OVER TIME Assessment i.e., How did our plans and activities work? Did we meet our goals? Retention Sales New Family Sales Marketing Lead count, leads by source, etc. Survey results, focus groups, etc. Positive “buzz” in the community Number of new families enrolled Lead conversion rate, i.e., % of leads enrolling Follow-on interviews with enrolling & non-enrolling families Retention rate for existing families Exit interviews with enrolling & non-enrolling families

16 Enrollment Management Planning Template and Rubric More Kids…

17 Who Manages Enrollment? Your school’s EM Team – YOU – Principal – Pastor – Faculty Member(s) – Parent(s) – Receptionist – Board/Committee? – Staff – Marketing/Admissions?

18 Enrollment Management Teams More Kids…

19 Parent Ambassador Program  Started in 2010 to provide structure to “word of mouth marketing”  Revised in 2012 to meet the needs of our schools  Approximately 75 schools have implemented a Parent Ambassador program with proven enrollment growth  http://ocs.archchicago.org/SchoolVitality/Market ingEnrollment/ParentAmbassadors.aspx http://ocs.archchicago.org/SchoolVitality/Market ingEnrollment/ParentAmbassadors.aspx

20 Integrated Communications Keep parents informed... Keep them engaged... Keep them “scripted” Constant messaging centered around the unique value proposition Key Audiences: Prospective Families, Current Parents, Alumni and Friends

21 How do you personally keep your students’ parents informed? Is the school’s value proposition integrated?

22 Website and Electronic Media Integral today– must be accurate and complete Articulation of mission and programs Admissions process Schedules School news Forms Faculty e-mails/contact/blogs/webpages Photos and videos Fundraising

23 Welcome Letter Take time to write a letter of introduction to your school families. Elements of a good letter include: Brief introduction Background and philosophy Keep it “warm” and engaging Avoid language parents won’t understand Consider hosting an event Add important dates -Please submit sample welcome letter by July 21

24 Websites More Kids… Questions to consider: Who can help you maintain? Who currently has access? How often is it updated? Does it reflect most up to date school information? Who is your target audience? And how do you balance information for audiences?

25 10 Year 5 Year Enrollment Tracking http://bit.ly/EnrollmentTracking2014 More Kids…

26 Websites More Kids… Elements of a Good Website (from a marketing perspective): Engaging photos Clean layout\easy to navigate Up to date- tuition, teachers etc. Tabs for current families and prospects “Contact Us” page with ability to take info Admissions Tab Evidence of vibrant school community School Video Mobile Accessible Google optimized

27 Questions?

28 THANK YOU! Please contact me with any questions. mippolito@archchicago.org mippolito@archchicago.org


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