Your Higher Education Marketing Newsletter… June 2011

Are you ready for the summer conference season? 

Mine starts with SUNYCUAD this week and ends with eduWeb2011 in August. Check the program details at the end of this newsletter and pick the one that best helps your marketing goals. I am hoping to meet many of you in person sometime in these next three months.

Writing Right for the Web is an especially favorite topic of mine. That is why I am excited about the new two-day web writing conference this July. Webinars are fine, but in-person conferences allow for much better exercises and overall interaction. Check the details at

Wednesday will be a fun day at SUNYCUAD. We four “core faculty” folk are opening with a panel discussion on how many of today’s individual SUNY institutions will exist in 2025. Roll that challenge around in your mind. Will your school exist in 15 years? If so, just how different will it be from what you know today?

And now here are your marketing news and notes for June. 
Georgetown Report on Earnings by 171 Academic Majors

The Economic Value of College Majors report from Georgetown University is one of the more buzz-creating reports of this year.

No room to even attempt a summary here. You can select from 5 different approaches to the data, including downloading the nearly 200 page full report. My favorite was an easy-to-use interactive table to check the programs of most importance to your marketing goals.

Select from the options at 
Marketing for Hispanics: 10 “Required Living” Tips

How can you best understand what will work in marketing to Hispanics?

That question motivated Rochelle Newman-Carrasco to prepare a list of 10 ways to understand how to best do marketing communications with Hispanics.

The unconventional list starts with paying attention to Hispanic theatre productions and ends with thinking like a kindergarten student. 

See the 8 points in between those at 
Tuition Discounting Hits All-Time High in 2010

Many private non-profit sector schools have been plagued with a nasty dilemma since the financial crash: increase tuition discounting or accept lower enrollment. Often, the response has been to increase discounting and live with lower net tuition revenue.

A new NACUBO report shows the average tuition discount rate at the highest ever: 42.4 percent in 2010. I will bet that is higher for 2011.

Read a detailed review of the report, based on responses from 381 schools, at
International Student Growth: New Challenges and Solutions

How are different campuses coping with surges in international students at the undergraduate level? How do the challenges differ from country to country?

Those questions are reviewed in a detailed Chronicle of Higher Education article that notes, for instance, differences between students from India (used to only one exam at the end of a course) and students from China (used to never sharing a room as only children.) 

Read the article and the comments that follow at
Is Brand Advertising Dead?

Al Ries warns that brand advertising is close to death, replaced by promotion of specific products produced by the brand organization. 

This isn’t completely new. Think Proctor and Gamble vs. Crest. But it focused my attention back to an old but still current discussion: will student recruitment benefit more from higher attention to specific academic programs or to the whole university that offers them.

The answer, of course, varies. Revisit an important issue after you read the Ries column
Is Your University President Too Complacent re the Future?

Daniel Yankelovich reviews how the higher education world has changed since 2008 and asks if enough higher education presidents truly grasp the changes needed in the future. Most especially he points to stagnant or declining middle-class income levels that will not allow annual increases in tuition levels to continue.

Decide if your president is complacent or not after you read the Yankelovich Chronicle of Higher Education article at
Twitter Grows: New Pew Internet Survey Report

The Pew Internet people have just reported strong growth in Twitter use among adults 25-34, with special strength among African-Americans and Hispanics. About half of Twitter use is from mobile devices.

It is not yet strong enough to play an essential role in recruitment communication programs, but plan to continue tracking Twitter use and reassess how you mig
ht use it in 2012 if the upward trend continues.

Download the full report or read it online after you visit the Overview page at 
Demographics of Social Media Users

AdAge offers graphics on who uses the most popular social media sites in the U.S. and around the world. 

Sites included: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and the ever shrinking MySpace. Missing but should be included: YouTube

Check the charts and the comments at
Writing Right for the Web: Questions, Answers

Check the answers to two questions (FAQ links, use of numbers) from my May “Writing Right for the Web” events on my blog at 
Print and Electronics in Higher Education

A new survey of college students reports that while most do not yet have tablet devices like the iPad, 73 percent of those who do prefer reading text books on the tablet over the print versions.

That obviously is a huge majority. And we can expect use of tablets to increase quickly over the next few years. Ponder that in your next discussion of “Yes, but print is not dead or going away soon.” Help yourself define “soon” as you explore further at
Gainful Employment Rule

Did the for-profit sector win or lose with the long-awaited “gainful employment” ruling from the Department of Education released last week? On balance, I say they won and demonstrated the power of well-funded lobbying.

Explore the implications for higher education funding for everyone when you read the report
My Upcoming Conferences and Webinars in 2011

Attend an upcoming conference to share questions and answers with people like you who are building a competitive edge in higher education marketing. Join me at these events.

June 8-10, SUNY CUAD Annual Conference, Saratoga Springs, NY: “Mobile Marketing in Higher Education: Challenges & Opportunities” and “Future Students and Their Parents: Exploring a 90% Positive Website Rating.” Visit 

June 14, Customer Carewords Webinar: “Recruiting International Students: 10 Top Website Features.” Register for this free webinar at

July 20-22, ACT Enrollment Planners Conference, Chicago, IL: Pre-conference workshop: “Mobile Marketing and Student Recruitment: What’s Hot and What’s Not in 2011” and regular conference session, “Explore a 90% Positive Website Rating by Future Students & Parents.” Register at 

July 26-27, Academic Impressions Conference, San Diego, CA: “Writing Right for the Web: Improving Your Institution‘s Web Content.” Program at 

July 28-29, Education Dynamics – Carol Aslanian Conference Marketing Graduate Programs to Working Professionals, New York, NY: Sessions on mobile marketing and best website practices for graduate recruiting. Details at 

August 1-3, eduWeb2011, San Antonio, TX: Pre-conference workshop: “Mobile Marketing in Higher Education: Challenges and Strategies for 2011.” Visit 

Improve your online marketing. Expand the writing, editing, and search marketing skills of people on your campus. Host a campus workshop on online marketing.

Contact me at
That’s All for Now 

Be a marketing champion on your campus.

Bob Johnson, Ph.D. ( 
Bob Johnson Consulting, LLC
Bob Johnson Consulting, LLC

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keting success with these 6 services. 
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