Posts Tagged ‘sales training’

Yes! You Can Accurately Predict What Prospective Students Will Think and Feel

November 30th, 2017

Consider the facts:

  • A student’s excitement about attending a college is more strongly correlated to enrollment – by a factor of two – than either cost or perceived quality of the college.
  • Almost all college-bound students (over 90%) believe it is important for colleges to attempt to understand their feelings and emotions. Yet, only 24% of them say that colleges are making the effort.
  • More than 80% of college-bound students say that the relationship they built with a college significantly impacted their decision to enroll.

Today’s college-bound students want to be excited about the college they choose; they want the college show a real interest in them; and they want a personal relationship with the college. 

You may ask, “Is it possible to develop the type of personal relationships the students we are recruiting crave when each of our counselors iks working with a have a pool of hundreds?” Or perhaps, “Our marketing efforts are focused on social media and mass marketing. How can that be personalized?”

Yes, it is possible.  And, it may well transform both your short and long term recruiting efforts. It involves segmenting your pool of prospective students psychographically. It’s about finding out what’s going on in the student’s head and how it will influence their college selection decision. And you can do that on a mass scale.

Psychographic segmentation is an effective strategy that can be indispensable in higher education and can impact every stage of your funnel. By definition, segmentation simply involves dividing a broad target market into subsets of consumers (in our case prospective students) who have, or are perceived to have, common needs, interests, and priorities, and then designing and implementing strategies to make your personal and mass communications more effective to the various segments you have identified.

You may already group your prospective student pool into geographic and socioeconomic segments. And you might overlay additional data sets for the purposes of predicting outcomes (such as enrollment). Predictive analytics is fantastic. As a marketer, I love it. But my sales background makes me want more. I want to understand each person I’m talking to. I want to know what they want and why. I want to know how they make decisions. I want know how I can frame a value proposition that will most resonate with them. I want to know how they can be best served.

Capture the information:

You CAN get this information from prospective students and it will dramatically improve the quality and richness of your communication with them. You just have to ask them for it.

We have. Over 50,000 college-bound students have participated in three of our most recent national co-sponsored studies, “Emotional Motivators, Hidden Influences,” andThe Relationship Dynamic. In those studies, we uncovered what is going on in their heads and hearts as they search for the kind of college they want. We gained insight into how they make decisions. Multiple psychographic segments emerged.

By asking students to describe their personality traits from a set of variables, and after statistical analysis, we uncovered four distinct personality types which make up our Psychographic Dimensions. We labeled them this way (in bold) based how students described themselves (in italics):

  • Warm and trusting: Easygoing, warm, caring and trusting
  • Assertive extrovert: Spontaneous, risk-taker, assertive, social and extroverted
  • Skeptical introvert: Private, introverted and skeptical
  • Analytical perfectionist: Analytical, ordered and perfectionist

In a following set of variables, we asked them to describe what they most want in a college. We then explored the associations between their psychographic dimensions and the attributes they most want. Here are the connections between personality traits and desired attributes.

  • Warm and trusting: Career-oriented, friendly, values, safe, personal and affordable, social, career-oriented, fun, exciting, friendly, safe, personal and values.
  • Spontaneous extrovert: Party school and sports.
  • Skeptical introvert: Diverse and liberal.
  • Analytical perfectionist: Prestigious, challenging and well-known.

This isn’t all we uncovered. As part of the Emotional Motivators study we presented students with a third set of variables that described the feelings and emotions they experienced as part of the college selection process. It’s fascinating to see the connection between their personality type, what they want in a college and the feelings and emotions they experienced leading up to college selection. When you layer these three dimensions you see people you know. You’ll recall someone who fit a specific personality type, who wanted certain things in a college, who exhibited specific feelings and emotions.

Leverage the data:

Imagine the power of reducing these three dimensions into a single code or variable at the end of a record in a table in a CRM. That single code could trigger different appeals, through different channels, with different information and calls to action.

At a personal communications level, admission counselors could have a fuller understanding of each student they talk to so they can serve them best. They can predict what they want and why. They can know how an individual student makes decisions and how to frame a value proposition that will most resonate with that person. A college that gathers this information at one or more points in the recruiting cycle can tailor every communication with a prospective student in a highly-personalized way that will dramatically improve the quality and richness of their communication with them.

For years, we’ve been capturing psychographic and “what you most want in a college” data in our Yield Enhancement System (YES) projects for colleges to assist counselors in crafting a more personalized approach to individual prospective students. Admission offices use this information to have more effective one-on-one interactions and, ultimately, boost their yield.

But now, the capture of this data on a wide scale could offer dramatic efficiency and effectiveness in communications and service to prospective students.

Continue the conversation on Twitter @LongmireCo. For more information about Longmire and Company’s Interactive Counselor Training Program, click here.  Subscribe to Versions of Conversion today so you don’t miss any of this highly-valuable information.

Bob Longmire is President of Longmire and Company, Inc. He is a recognized expert on the topic of how prospective students and parents form their college selection decisions – and how colleges can use that knowledge to grow and control their enrollment. He can be reached at (913) 492-1265, ext 709 or at Connect with Bob at Linkedin/in/boblongmire.

Special Announcement: How to Up Your Game For Yield Season Success

November 30th, 2016

College admission directors and enrollment managers often tell us that they wish they had the budget to hire professionals to train their admission teams. ampupyourgame3They tell us they know they need training; that their counselors would greatly benefit from learning new skills; and the right program would energize the entire staff.  “But,” they say regretfully, “we just don’t have the budget to support the large expenditure this kind of professional development often costs.”

So, when one of our clients casually asked if we would consider offering our Interactive Counselor Training Workshop on a regional basis so that colleges in the area could come and get the training they want and need, quickly and affordably, we were all in! And we suggested the focus be on yield.

We are delighted to announce that for a limited time, Longmire and Company’s highly regarded counselor training is coming to you! At a cost you can afford.

Colleges all over the United States hire us to come to them. To develop customized training to help their counselors work better and smarter, and have richer, more productive conversations with prospective students and parents that will lead to more (and more desirable) enrollments. There is no more important time than right now to coach your counselors in the finer points of moving students along the recruiting continuum and ultimately sealing the deal.

So we’ve developed a special day-long workshop that we’re bringing to your geographic area.

A number of colleges and universities will be serving as regional host sites where nearby colleges can send counselors to participate in a full-day intensive Yield Season Counselor Training Workshop that will prepare counselors for yield season success. This very affordable workshop is designed to benefit seasoned counselors just as much as counselors who are going through their first full recruiting cycle. Best of all, counselors you send will return home with skills and techniques that can be shared with the whole admission team.

We are selecting centralized geographic locations where counselors can easily drive to the event in the morning and be home for dinner the same night.

Attendees will learn new methods to:

  • Adopt a student-centric approach to recruiting.
  • Reveal the needs, preferences, motivations, and perceptions of prospective students.
  • More effectively present the value of their college based on what the student (and parent) perceives as being most valuable.
  • Manage the perceptions and opinions that prospective students form about their college.
  • Uncover hidden influences that will impact a student’s enrollment decision.
  • Learn how to differentiate your college.
  • Create and foster relationships with students that will lead to enrollment.
  • Discover the true influence of cost and isolate factors that will outweigh cost.
  • Enlist the support and influence of parents.
  • Share their new skills and techniques with the entire admission team.

The Bottom Line: You can Up Your Game this Yield Season for a minimal investment in time and money and a maximum return in your enrollment.

Our Yield Season Counselor Training Workshop is a comprehensive, highly interactive one-day program that incorporates our game-changing student-centric approach to recruiting.

Years of research and the input of many, many thousands of college-bound students shaped this training program. The answer to increasing enrollment in the face of the many challenges in higher education today lies in taking an entirely student-centric approach to recruiting where the admission office and counselors realize that “It’s not about the institution – it’s about the student.”

Colleges and universities that adopt the student-centric approach find that it is very is powerful. The skills and techniques that will build relationships that lead to enrollment are trainable. Through our Interactive Counselor Training Workshops we spend a great deal of time changing the focus of admission counselors. We see their transformation and improvements in productivity. Most importantly, we see changes in the recruiting process that exposes students to the information and experiences that truly interest and excite them.

The net result? Improved service to prospective students and families, measurable increases in yield, increased counselor and staff job satisfaction, enhanced teamwork, and innovations in work process within the department.

We see it work every day. Hire the right people, put them in roles that let their strengths shine through, and give them the proper training and tools so they can populate the institution with students who will be successful and committed to the institution long after graduation.

We have already scheduled Yield Season Counselor Training Workshops in Missouri, Indiana, Kentucky and Texas and we are adding more.

If you are interested in attending a workshop, suggesting a location, or even hosting a workshop, ask for details here.

We help colleges with their recruiting efforts every day. If we can help you please call me or any member of our team, Continue the conversation on Twitter @LongmireCo. For more information about Longmire and Company and the tools we have to offer, click here. Be sure to subscribe to Versions of Conversion today so you don’t miss any of this highly-valuable information.

RickMontgomery_100x100Rick Montgomery is as an Enrollment Strategist at Longmire and Company. With over 20 years in higher education marketing, he brings an innovative and dynamic approach to helping colleges and universities meet their enrollment goals. Rick can be reached at 913/492.1265 x.708 or via email at

Hidden Influences: Find out what prospective students are NOT telling you

May 24th, 2016

Get On Board!

We know that prospective students don’t always tell us what they really think. Sometimes they don’t want to be completely honest about their REAL first-choice college because they think they’ll hurt our feelings. They may tell us they had a great campus visit, yet tell their parents on the way home that they’ll never enroll. They often say one thing and do another. Why?


Unfortunately, their hidden opinions and perceptions hinder our ability to fully understand, communicate with, and ultimately recruit them. In light of this, colleges are asking, “How can we better understand the individuals we’re trying to recruit and uncover the positive and negative perceptions that influence their enrollment decisions?”

We will answer those critical questions in our next co-sponsored study, Hidden Influences: Revealing the unspoken perceptions that prospective students have about your college and why it matters in your ability to grow and control enrollment. This unprecedented study will break new ground in exploring the hidden perceptions and opinions that influence students in choosing your college or another. Unlike any other higher education research or non-matric studies, Hidden Influences will dive deeply into the emotions and perceptions that factor into the college selection process. This study, like our previous co-sponsored studies, will provide you with actionable information you can use immediately and effectively.

We hope you will join a prestigious list of co-sponsoring colleges and universities, large and small, and participate in this study. Co-sponsors find our studies valuable because of the wealth of new insight they gain about their individual pools of prospective students – insight they can use to drive action and change.

Tabulations_ReportAs a co-sponsor you receive a comprehensive set of tabulations relating to your pool of students, as well comparative data of others in your cohort and other market segments. You’ll also receive the national summary report before its widespread release.

In addition, Longmire and Company Enrollment Strategists will prepare and deliver a fully-customized webinar to review your individual findings and offer recommendations for specific actions you can take to improve your communications, conversations and interactions with prospective students. For these webinars co-sponsors often assemble staff from admissions, marketing, financial aid and faculty to benefit from the new perspectives, ideas and actions that these studies yield.

We have been told many times by co-sponsors that the webinar alone is worth the cost!

Webinar_Title_SlideIt can be very expensive for an individual college or university to do the scope of research needed to get the answers and insight we get. But by co-sponsoring with other institutions you get the best of both worlds: Data and insight about your pool of prospective students coupled with a national picture, resulting in a very comprehensive study for a fraction of what it would cost to do it on your own. These studies are affordable at just $2,975 (all inclusive) per institution.

For more information or to reserve your participation in this study, contact Rick Montgomery (913) 492-1265, ext. 708 or  by email at or me at (913) 492-1265, ext. 709, Colleges are signing up now so we encourage you to contact us soon if you are thinking about participating. CLICK HERE FOR COMPLETE INFORMATION.

We help colleges with their recruiting efforts every day. If we can help you please call or shoot me an email. Continue the conversation on Twitter @LongmireCo. For more information about Longmire and Company and the tools we have to offer, click here. Be sure to subscribe to Versions of Conversion today so you don’t miss any of this highly-valuable information.

RHL_Photo_100x100 Bob Longmire is President of Longmire and Company, Inc. He is a recognized expert on the topic of how prospective students and parents form their college selection decisions – and how colleges can use that knowledge to grow and control their enrollment. He can be reached at (913) 492-1265, ext 709 or at Connect with Bob at Linkedin/in/boblongmire.

What is Your College’s Lasting Impression?

January 6th, 2016

[Part 4 of our blog series on how exceptional pre- and post-enrollment customer service can increase yield at your college or university.]

The holidays are behind us (I hope yours were full of family, friends and fun) and now we are all gearing up for the year ahead. In the world of enrollment management that means yielding the best possible incoming class of 2016.

Customer service sealIn recent weeks, we have been sharing insights with you about how providing exceptional pre-enrollment customer service can impact your ability to achieve your enrollment goals. When you get it right, it will differentiate your school from all others. But, if you have breakdowns in your pre-enrollment service, it can be the single element that derails you.

Consider this: In our national co-sponsored study, How Customer Service Delivery During the Recruiting Cycle Influences Enrollment, we found that 53% of students and parents say that the service they receive from a college during the “shopping process” influences their selection decision.

Prospective students and parents view the pre-enrollment service they receive as predictive of how the student will be served after enrollment.

The research is very clear but it was a chance encounter with an old friend over the holidays that crystallized the message for me.

My friend Dave is assisting his oldest daughter, Emily, in her college search. Dave is a savvy consumer and he is also well aware that Emily has the GPA, college test scores, and extracurricular activities that colleges find attractive in a prospective student. As a matter of fact, he shared with me that she has been on the radar screen for a number of schools for several months. “She gets daily emails, letters and phone calls from all of them,” he said. “I figured we would take a hard look at two or three and it would be an easy decision. Instead, she is more confused now than ever. The whole experience was a huge disappointment.”

Here is Dave’s take on the college shopping experience:

  • At College A:  Emily and her dad were given the standard tour which did not include any of the areas of specific interest to Emily. “She is a likely music major but that wasn’t part of the tour. When she asked about the music program, which we know is considered to be among the finest, the guide provided a spiel right out of the handbook.” And this was after numerous phone conversations with the admissions counselor.
  • At College B:  The tour was far more personalized. “Someone had done their homework because she was shown the music department and told about specific opportunities available to her.” Dave said that Emily got excited about the campus and he had a feeling they had found The One. That is, until they had a one-on-one with the admissions counselor. “What a turn-off,” Dave groaned. “He recited an encyclopedia of stuff about the school but didn’t relate any of it to Emily. I don’t think he asked her even one question about her interests or what she wanted from the college experience.”
  • On to College C:  “The admissions staff was enthusiastic and helpful. The counselor truly seemed to care about my daughter,” Dave said. But it all fell apart when they left their office. “The campus atmosphere wasn’t friendly and the grounds were unkempt. We got turned around and couldn’t find anyone to help. ” When they finally found their way back to the car, Emily told her dad, “No way!”

Unfortunately, Emily’s experience is not unique. It does, however, offer a cautionary tale for all colleges and university enrollment teams.

Here is the Good News:  You CAN be the college or university that stands out with exceptional pre-enrollment service.  Review this multi-part series for the necessary processes and steps. Taking control of your pre-enrollment service delivery will allow you to better serve prospective students and increase your yield.  Make it your New Year’s resolution!

The Business Principle You Can Adopt Today for Increased Yield

Take this First Step Toward Increasing Yield TODAY

Don’t Let These 3 Pitfalls Derail Your Enrollment Success

Worth watching. About a year ago Chris D’Orso interviewed Longmire and Company on Higher Ed Live about customer service in higher ed.

If you have any questions, please give me a call. Longmire and Company offers Service Quality Management (SQM) surveys to help you achieve these goals. And we conduct workshops on campus to help colleges chart their course in providing better service to prospective and current students. Contact me today and I will show you how we can help you measure and manage your pre-enrollment service. Continue the conversation on Twitter @LongmireCo.

RickMontgomery_100x100Rick Montgomery is as an Enrollment Strategist at Longmire and Company. With over 20 years in higher education marketing, he brings an innovative and dynamic approach to helping colleges and universities meet their enrollment goals. Rick can be reached at 913/492.1265 x.708 or via email at