Colleges and universities across the nation are learning the hard way: Today’s successful student search programs are built on a foundation of solid institutional research and targeted communications strategies. The old “spray and pray” marketing tactic doesn’t work anymore.

Instead, higher education institutions are turning to methods that successfully meet institutional goals while providing a set of ongoing metrics that justify the direction of their search programs. These methodologies each begin with data-driven predictive models.

Solid institutional data going back at least five years is essential in producing effective predictive models. Predictive models determine search markets to target and also identify potential growth markets to extend the current reach of recruitment efforts. The models are created from your data and take into account your school’s demographic and recent recruitment information.

The most effective predictive models always include data from these five segments:

  • Inquiries
  • Applicants
  • Accepted Students
  • Enrolled Students
  • Campus Visits

Your data analyst must delve into your historical SCF trends and identify areas wherein you have been successful. He or she examines key indicators and segments your data into geographic and socioeconomic subgroups. That information is then used to target groups who are most likely to enroll.

It’s important to create predictive models that include several criteria. A five-point model like the one listed above helps determine which students you want to recruit for your incoming class, while also predicting that they will be attracted to you in return. The more specific you can get in choosing search names that match your goals and reflect historic success demographics, the higher you can expect your response rate to be, and the more likely you are to convert those names into applied and enrolled students.

In addition, the regression analysis used to create the predictive model allows you to further delve into your data to target the most qualified leads, increase yield, increase net revenue, improve diversity, raise the profile of your class, and improve your inquiry-to-application conversion rate. This data can also be a useful tool for your counselors, enabling your college to target new markets for travel, as well.

Students understand they are making a long-term commitment to their chosen college. It is to your school’s advantage to target students who fit the profile of your current students and help build the profile your school is looking to secure within its student body. Pre-qualifying students through an effective predictive modeling process is the best tactic for ensuring success in your search programs.

Get Help Creating Effective Data-Driven Predictive Models

The Parish Group’s five-part predictive model finds students who fall in love with your school for all the right reasons. We delve into your institution’s unique historical trends and identify those areas where you have been successful. Our thorough regression analysis serves as the basis of your search order and helps direct your search messaging and strategy.

Identifying the correct students is our specialty. Bringing you success is our delight. Contact us today to learn more about our predictive model strategy and additional search services.