How Enrollment Resources helped Spatech Institute improve lead flow
“If we were not already developed to the point where we had been in the lead generation when we started working together, I estimate we would have likely seen a 40-50% increase in the quantity of good leads coming in. Because we had already jump-started the process before beginning work with [ER] we’ve actually seen about a 10% increase – but that 10% in a degenerating market is a victory.“ – Kris Stecker, Owner, Spatech Institute
Spa Tech Institute is a four-campus chain based in Massachusetts and Maine. Owner Kris Stecker recognized there were issues within its enrollment process but struggled to articulate problems.
After a review with Enrollment Resources, we identified three primary issues impacting enrollment:
- An over-reliance on lead generation portals and directories where quality of leads were dropping while lead costs continued to rise. The owners of the college were worried their years of hard work in building their reputation were getting buried within portals with competitors, no individual online presence
- The need to sharpen focus on increasing effectiveness in lead generation and the follow up process – particularly with existing students and the graduate base – and to stay more connected with those students while building a more robust referral base
- Improved direct marketing to minimize the “spam” effect from lead-generator vendors and increase the quality of relationship with students and potential students
Evaluation and Measurement against Best Practices
Enrollment Resources evaluated the Spa Tech Enrollment Management Process comparing the school against best practices in North America;
- A review of over 108 marketing and admissions activities schools can typically undertake to improve enrollment figures. Spa Tech was scored and compared against North American best practices
- A dollars and cents review of how seemingly small oversights translate into significant financial implications.
- Comprehensive mystery shops by phone, online, and after hours, including a mystery Shop of lead gen portals
- A Survey of ‘stale leads’ identifying why good leads leak through the process and why some leads went to competition
- A survey of existing alumni, students and stakeholders to establish the refer-ability of the offering
Through the Enrollment Resources evaluation and research process, Spa Tech identified areas where easy to implement, low cost solutions could be applied to achieve immediate results.
- Enhancement and building on existing school initiatives
- Use of sales people instead of administrative staff for handling admissions to be directed by the new, highly-effective Director of Enrollment
- Implemented a welcome/call center.
- Improved response time on new leads – Removed this function from the control of individual lead-generating companies
- Website modifications that added a response form to every page
- Establish a professional direct marketing email campaign
The simple evaluation process identified significant performance implications regarding the school’s enrollment process.
- Controlling their own Welcome Center allowed Spa Tech to present a polished and consistent approach at that first point of contact. This was particularly notable when compared to previous lead-generation companies used on contract
- Changes to the website that resulted in a 20% increase in leads
- Implementing a direct marketing email tool gave Spa Tech a greater degree of control in marketing to ‘seemingly stale leads’. This allowed them to deliver value-added content and engage people in a respectful and meaningful way over time
- The auto responder process put in place helped maintain disciplined repetitive contact with prospective students and allowed Spa Tech to utilize ongoing internal marketing efforts with existing databases as opposed to leaning on lead-gen portals additional leads
- Conversion rates improved
In spite of the fact Spa Tech had in place a successful internal paid search campaign, Enrollment Resources was able to improve performance an additional 10%. This was deemed to be significant given the industry sector at the time was in decline.