Shopping for Marketing Automation? Here’s What to Avoid

While adopting marketing automation can bring significant value to higher education enrollment and marketing teams, there are also challenges institutions may encounter.

Here are seven common pitfalls and ways to avoid them.

Pitfall No. 1
Enrollment Strategy

Define clear objectives, target audiences and KPIs.

Jumping into marketing automation without a clear strategy or plan can lead to disjointed efforts and underutilization of the platform.

How to Avoid: Develop a comprehensive recruitment marketing strategy that aligns with institutional goals. Define clear objectives, target audiences, and key performance indicators (KPIs).

Pitfall No. 2
Data Silos

Poor system integration leads to data silos.

Failing to integrate the marketing automation platform with existing systems, such as CRMs and student information systems, can result in data silos and missed opportunities.

How to Avoid: Prioritize platform selection based on its integration capabilities and support available. Seamless data flow between systems maintains a unified view of student information.

Pitfall No. 3
Counseling Staff

Prioritize support, training and a managed service.

Insufficient internal expertise and training on how to use the platform effectively can lead to underutilization of features and a slower implementation process.

How to Avoid: Choose a solution that offers support, managed services, and training for staff members involved in marketing activities to ensure teams are proficient in utilizing the platform’s capabilities.

Pitfall No. 4
Segmenting Outreach

Tailor outreach through segmentation capabilities.

Not leveraging the segmentation and personalization features of the platform can lead to generic and less effective marketing campaigns.

How to Avoid: Take advantage of the platform’s segmentation and personalization capabilities to tailor outreach to the diverse needs and interests of students.


Pitfall No. 5
Enrollment Data Resources

Stick to best marketing automation practices.

Failing to follow automation best practices can result in poorly executed campaigns, spamming, or irrelevant communications.

How to Avoid: Adhere to best practices for automation, including setting clear goals, testing campaigns before launch, regularly optimizing workflows, and avoiding excessive automation.

Pitfall No. 6
Predictive Models

Monitor and measure the impact of campaigns.

Not leveraging analytics tools to measure the performance of marketing campaigns can lead to missed opportunities for improvement.

How to Avoid: Regularly analyze key performance metrics and use the insights to refine marketing strategies. Set up tracking mechanisms to monitor the impact of campaigns on student enrollment and engagement.

Pitfall No. 7
Marketing to Students

Align marketing with enrollment goals.

Focusing solely on marketing without aligning strategies with enrollment and admission goals can lead to a disconnect between marketing efforts and institutional objectives.

How to Avoid: Collaborate closely with enrollment and admissions teams to align marketing strategies with the institution’s enrollment goals.

By being aware of these common pitfalls and taking proactive steps to address them, colleges and universities can enhance the success of their marketing automation initiatives and better achieve their enrollment and engagement objectives.

By Kevin Hyde, Senior Marketing Content Manager, Capture Higher Ed