3 rock-solid event marketing techniques you must borrow from colleges TODAY

I’m constantly on the lookout for great event marketing case studies to share with you. This week’s ideas come right from my own home, as Son #1 currently navigates his college admissions journey. I see so many ways that college admission events have high ROM, so here are a few #FreshTips on the techniques that you should be using to increase your ROM.

First, can you think of many other categories that have such brand loyalty than colleges?  License Global Magazine and IMG College Licensing estimate that $4.55 billion was spent on officially licensed collegiate products in the last year alone. Think about your own experience. Were you born into your allegiances (can I tell you how many different college onesies we received when both sons were born?) or did they begin during your own college experience.

What’s this have to do with you and your business? You must remember that in many cases, the affinity begins in the college admissions process, often with that first visit to campus… also known as AN EVENT.  Let’s take a look at three rock-solid event strategies you can borrow from the college admissions process to increase the ROM of your events.

Tip #1: Consistency breeds trustworthiness

Potential “clients” (a.k.a. students) know (whether innately or from advisors) when they should come for a visit and can select a date and time that work for their schedule. Is this something you can do for your clients? You bet!  Learn your clients’ decision-making  and budget cycle. Host your events at a critical time in that cycle. Host them once a year or once a quarter or once a month, but be consistent on when you host them. How you ever heard, “Wow this is great, but we just set our budget for the year.” Timing really can be everything!

Tip #2: Tell them what you want to tell them and tell them again

College admission programs target a very specific audience, use a targeted message, make it easy to sign-up for a campus visit, communicate details before your arrival, welcome you like they were expecting you and have a team ready to answer any questions right there on site. Ask yourself: What is your communication flow? Is it informative, welcoming, and complete? Communication sets the tone on how people expect to be treated during the pre-event process and when they arrive on-site. Use this opportunity to show them how important they are to you.

Tip #3: Tell them what you told them and then tell them some more

Everyone does this, right? A pre-programmed note, a little survey about the food and speakers and we call it good? Well…  if you take nothing from this article, please remember this

Is your event as part of the conversation or the end of it? College admissions events are part of the conversation. A study by Art & Science Group, a higher education market intelligence research firm, stated that 65 percent of those polled indicated that campus visits were very influential in their application decision. Yes, a tour survey is a good way for you to gain data about your team, but follow up emails with dates, deadlines, other visit opportunities, ways to connect with happy current students and even opportunities for prospect parents to connect with current parents are all part of the college selling process. Think about what sets you apart, what information is critical in the sales decision cycle, how current clients can “speak” with prospective clients and communicate it after you’ve established the event-driven introduction to carry on the conversation.


I bet you never thought about how college admission events can help your event strategy. I do. That’s why it’s all about a Fresh Perspective! Please share your thoughts below and let’s keep the conversation going.