Boost Student Recruitment Using Marketing Automation

students recruited working on a project
Ashley Omphroy
Marketing Automation Consultant


One of the main challenges of student recruitment is delivering maximum impact for every prospective student interaction—and doing this with the staff and the support you already have in place.

Here is where marketing automation can help! The right marketing automation platform (MAP) will help you set up streamlined marketing interactions with prospective, current, and past students to deliver the most relevant, personalised, and useful message to the right person, at the right time.

With marketing automation, you´ll have access to customised, segmentable data that will allow you to funnel your prospective leads effectively. Using this invaluable information, you can expand your outreach and nurture student interest through effective, targeted messaging.

The end result? You´ll develop long-lasting relationships at every stage of the student decision-making journey, helping you recruit more students, turn those students into your future success stories, and reach your student recruitment goals.
Here is how marketing automation features can help you attract new students, engage students across all points of the student recruitment process, and retain the students you have to turn them into your institution’s best cheerleaders.

Attract Them (Or, Show Them What You’ve Got)

Use data and segment it by:

  • interest (what programs are they interested in?),
  • engagement (is this an initial contact? Have they visited the campus? Have they looked at housing options?),
  • and area of research (what have they looked at on your website, and what does that tell you about their level of interest?).

This will help you target a personalised and relevant message.

Reach out to prospective students where they like to be, using different content for different formats—a newsletter, a blog, a long-form article, an email reminder—to maximise impact.

Use targeted ads to generate and develop an interest in what you have to offer—and craft and deploy retargeting strategies to keep those initial leads from going cold.

Enable social sharing features to make it easy for prospects to interact with you, giving you the opportunity to gather the information you need while you learn more about what they want and need.

Engage them (Or, Build a Meaningful Relationship)

Draft and generate behavior-triggered messaging using the data you´ve gathered to maximise student recruitment impact and nurture leads—craft effective onboarding campaigns, share stories and perspectives, and deliver these valuable, targeted messages at the right stage of the student´s decision-making journey.

Improve your accessibility across all relevant channels so students can easily interact with you—while it may not be practical for a student to call, they may really appreciate being able to reach out through live chat, blogs, or social media.

Ask for feedback, make it easy for students to provide feedback, and showcase how well you respond to their feedback—show prospects that you listen to what they have to say and value their time, opinions, and needs.

Expand retargeting campaigns to nurture student interest and keep students in the pipeline—they may not be ready to act yet, but you can still provide them with valuable information and create a meaningful bond over time.

RETAIN (Or, Nurture That Long-Lasting Bond)

Use content marketing to send stories and updates that interest them specifically—show them what your staff has been working on, how your current students are making the most of their experience, and how past students are benefiting from what your institution has to offer.

Send them recommendations for courses and ongoing programs based on past behaviours and established relationships with your institution across a variety of areas (academics, networking, fundraising opportunities, sports…).

Reconnect using event invitations and follow-ups, email reminders, and institution updates.

Request feedback and updates from your past students and offer to help showcase their achievements—and don´t forget to ask for donations!

The more information you get, the more specifically you can engage and convey a personalised and targeted message to increase student enrolment, retain current students, and achieve the successful educational outcomes that will strengthen your recruitment efforts by making your institution stand out against the rest.

Need more information on what marketing automation can do for your institution? Looking for ideas to maximise your recruitment efforts with digital marketing? We are here to help!