Why You Should be Marketing Your Summer Program

Carnegie Higher Ed Oct 28, 2014 Carnegie Higher Ed Persona The Visionary Frontrunner

It’s no secret that summer programs are becoming crucial for students and parents in terms of education, job preparation, and life experience. Simply put, summer programs are cool now . . . or at least an important part of a college-bound student’s admission plan and an undergrad’s résumé. But how do you reach those students? How do you make your program stand out in a sea of thousands of options? Enter Carnegie.

CollegeXpress and SummerProgramSearch.com

When we first started talking about diving into the summer program market, we knew we had a great platform in CollegeXpress, a website completely geared to the 13- to 24-year-old market and right in the summer program wheelhouse. As a site that promotes the transition from high school to college to grad school to career, CollegeXpress takes students from the beginning of their academic journey to the end, wherever that may be on the spectrum. CollegeXpress looks to provide a comprehensive experience and be the one-stop shop for any student’s needs—and so SummerProgramSearch.com was born.

In the past year, CollegeXpress saw 5.5+ million visitors and 550,000+ monthly visitors, with 95% of traffic from the United States. With the consistent growth of the site, along with impressive college and university lead generation numbers from our PC&U platform, summer programs joined the ranks of its higher education counterparts with featured profiles and lead generation services. There’s no reason why college and universities should get all of the marketing love—they are only one piece of the overall academic puzzle!

If we know anything about marketing, it’s that it takes more than one touchpoint to make an impact on any consumer. By using the right media, providing dynamic profiles, and placing data-retrieval buttons on registration paths, search results, and listing pages, students and parents are introduced to more summer programs than ever before—and summer programs are given student data to use in their own marketing ventures. It’s a no-mess, super-uncomplicated, symbiotic relationship.

Featured profiles

How does it work? It all starts with a featured profile; the gateway to a trove of students and parents you wouldn’t otherwise reach. A featured profile allows for extra data to be listed, with a strong overview of your program, outbound links, and pictures. It’s easier to get a clearer picture of a program when you’re able to show some personality—in this case, students and parents connect to that more than generic data.

With a featured profile comes lead generation services that provide weekly student inquires captured from CollegeXpress registration, SummerProgramSearch.com search results, and your listing itself. This data is from students and parents who actively click and seek out your program. From there, you can take those inquiries and use them in your future marketing—hitting prospective students and parents early on with more information about your program, which hopefully leads to a conversion, and thus completes the multi-touchpoint marketing initiative we started.

Data doesn’t lie

And our data says that summer programs are the new cool kid in town. In the year since CollegeXpress and Summer Program Search started their lead generation and featured profile services, searches for programs and general program inquiries have grown exponentially. Just last week, over 637 students and parents clicked on and sought more information from specific programs, with an average of 50 names for each listing. In the last year, a total of 28,295 inquiries have been sent to our clients. Further, featured programs are seeing an average of 1,000% more visits and 200% greater average time on the listing page.

Why does it work? It’s simple—everything parents and students could need is in one spot. Want to get in on an easy and affordable option for your summer program marketing? Contact me today!

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