Focusing on the Top for Fall 2023

Prospective students have a plethora of options and research ahead of them on their college seeking journey. With so many options, it’s important to get your institution to stand out. This means getting personal! Finding students where they are searching, catching their attention, and flagging those students who are most engaged, will give your team the insight to target those who are most interested. 

Leads and Prospects

As the largest chunk of the funnel, this stage isn’t so focused on the nuances of your institution, but rather the need for these prospective students to know of you and gain interest. Google Ads have gained a lot of attention for our partners, who have seen success far above the approximately 1% click-thru rate (CTR) success threshold for Google ads. While Google Search creates an opportunity for web searches to populate your institution utilizing key search words, Google Display picks up and runs with your prospective students based on web activity. 

Google Ads

Google Search


In this stage, you’ve caught the prospective student’s attention. Likely, they are visiting your site more, seeing your benefits, and we, as a staff, want to identify these students who have piqued interest.

PID forms allow visitors to raise their hands, and triggered emails allow you to get them more information … additionally allowing counselors the insight to whom is ripe for outreach. PID forms are a great way to gauge interest, they can be tailored with questions regarding intent to apply, anticipated enroll year, program of interest, etc. This information allows staff to get more personal with enrollment steps, deadlines and more! For popovers (PID forms), a successful conversion rate is considered 3% while triggered emails open rate is successful between 17-28%.

Below I’ve found a general PID campaign with triggered email and a campaign highlighting a great benefit with the triggered email. Both have amazing conversion and open rates!

Inquiries PID Form

Inquiries Popover

Highlight your benefits! Using market segments, Capture can tailor your content to specific populations. I love the below campaign that uses market segments to highlight IP addresses in states eligible for one-half tuition. Look at that conversion rate!

One-Half Tuition

Tuition Triggered Email


As these prospects identify themselves and engage with content, they are delivered through the use of the Daily Visitor Report. This report is an amazing tool for taking all of these hand raisers from above and begin guiding them along. When looking at your visitor report, or perusing your assigned contacts in the CRM, take note of Capture’s data points.

The Capture Engagement Score (CES)  is useful in letting you know how much momentum they’re taking right now while their Capture Affinity Index (CAI) lets you know how long they’ve been on your site researching you. Lastly, top tags and visit history lets you know exactly what each visitor is clicking on. 

Quick example: You open your DVR, go into a visitor profile, and see they filled out the one-half tuition state PID form. You also see in their visit history that they’ve been on your financial aid page. You can then personalize your messing by saying;

“Hi John, I just wanted to reach out and thank you for your interest in Faux State! My name is Cat and I’m here for any questions you may have while you’re deciding on colleges. I also wanted to let you know that you qualify for ½ tuition since you live in _______. Additionally, around this time in the process, students start thinking about the additional options they have to assist with tuition. I just wanted to share some information on financial aid and scholarships …” 

Google ads, PID forms and Triggered Emails are a great way to begin weeding through your funnel to uncover those top prospects and get them the assistance they need. They also assist your counselors in taking those top prospects and creating a personalized journey for them based on data you receive from those efforts.

Between these, your teams are able make those impactful connections with the right students. This is the perfect time to assess your funnel efforts to increase your conversions. If you have any thoughts, or would like to add some of the successful pieces above, be sure to discuss it at your next Capture meeting!

By Cat Hollands, Client Trainer, Capture Higher Ed