“We are not the Wal-Marts of higher education. We do not want to compete on cost.”
-Eduventures Principal Analyst, Heather O’Leary
Unfortunately, our data shows that if you aren’t communicating your value, students are making decisions based on cost.
To recruit and retain the right students, you must communicate and deliver your value effectively throughout the college life cycle. To do this, keep these tips in mind:
1. Be authentic. When developing your value proposition, take an honest look at your institution’s strengths. Identify the characteristics that make you, not just unique, but truly special. These are the messages that capture and resonate with your audience.
2. Keep your promises. Everyone at the institution needs to agree on your selling points (value proposition) before you commit to them. Your value is what brings students in the door, but it’s also what keeps them at your school, and is a big part of why they will continue to engage as alumni.
3. Get everyone on board. It’s up to everyone at the institution to deliver on those promises—not just the folks in the student affairs and enrollment offices. It’s the responsibility of your alumni, students, staff, and faculty to constantly reinforce the value of the education your students are receiving.
The “value” of higher education comes in the form of academics, affordability, and social environment. These also happen to be the factors that have the most influence on student retention, according to our recent retention ratings study. We’ll discuss more of these findings in our complimentary webinar, Undergraduate Retention: Find Out Who’s Beating the Retention Odds, this Thursday, February 20.
For more insight on this topic, watch Eduventures Principal Analyst, Heather O’Leary discuss the importance of value at our recent annual Higher Ed Open Mic event: