How Does Your Marketing Rate on a Student’s ‘Authenticity Meter?’

In a recent interview about marketing and recruitment planning, Jamie Gleason, a Capture Higher Ed enrollment expert, talked about how today’s prospective college students have been marketed to online for as long as they can remember. This makes them sensitive to spin and crave authenticity.

Jamie Gleason

“This generation of students has an authenticity meter that is very keen, and they are very savvy to spin and marketing, making it incumbent on us as enrollment managers to … ultimately present a message that is real in the higher ed marketplace,” Gleason says. “Higher ed is filled with stock messaging, stock photos — experiences that have been canned and have been part of the process for so long.”

That’s why a tool like behavioral intelligence, a platform that provides marketing automation and predictive modeling, has never been more important to the college recruitment process, he says. “It allows enrollment management professionals to give a message at the right time to the person who needs to hear it,” Gleason says. “In fact, I would go so far as to say they expect to hear it.”

2020 Vision

Gleason was being interviewed for Capture’s upcoming e-feature, Do You Have 2020 Vision? Planning for Next Year and Beyond. During the wide-ranging conversation, he discusses how enrollment management has changed over the past two decades, what he would do if he were taking over an admission office right now, his biggest reasons for optimism and concern in the current higher ed climate, and, yes, the students’ thirst for authenticity.

“Marketing usually assumes a positive spin, but students are hoping to see a high level of authenticity,” he says. “We all know that the college admissions process is highly emotive, but these students are so used to being marketed to that we have to change that emotive sense. It has to be a pure connection. We have these automated processes and global products, but they also have to be highly personalized.”

To hear more from Jamie, as well as what Capture’s experts in graduate recruitment and university advancement are recommending for future planning, keep an eye out for Do You Have 2020 Vision? Planning for Next Year and Beyond.

By Kevin Hyde, Senior Content Writer, Capture Higher Ed