Your Higher Education Marketing Link of the Week… The College of New Jersey: “Value” Comparison with 111 Schools… 18 October 2019

Marketing Tool for Sticker Price Comparisons between TCNJ & 111 Others

The College of New Jersey Conventional wisdom in the higher education world says that many high school students (and their parents) are overly influenced by sticker price first impressions without taking into account the ability of scholarships and financial aid to lower the net cost. The slowly expanding practice of tuition “resets” in the private sector is motivated in part by the impact of sticker price.

The College of New Jersey is a public institution. That automatically gives it a sticker price advantage when compared to private sector schools, depending on the amount charged for out-of-state students. TCNJ uses an interactive price comparison tool that lets people compare the TCNJ sticer price (tuiton, room & board, books, personal expenses) for the current year and three more years based on 3% tuition increases. You can compare TCNJ with your choice of 111 colleges and universities. You’re asked to identify your home state but the tool gives you a comparison even if you skip that.

The marketing message on the “Costs” page that precedes this one: “TCNJ’s value far exceeds the cost of its public-college tuition, making it extremely affordable for both in-state and out-of-state students.”

TCNJ says the 111 schools are the “top competitors” for new students. That’s quite a high number at the “top.” But this is an interesting marketing research opportunity to see which schools are selected most often by prospective students visiting the page and using the tool.

“Top competitors” include Harvard and Yale and St. John’s and Hofstra universities and Felician and Moravian colleges. The comparison includes the “difference” you will pay between TCNJ and the schools you select. The added sticker price at California Institute of Technology, for instace, is $128,696 for a student from Colorado.

TCNJ also includes links to the website cost pages each school included here.

Not ready for mobile use…

The College of New JerseyYou can see from the images here that TCNJ doesn’t anticiapate that people will use the tool from their smartphone. The opening text is truncated and you can’t scroll sideways to see what’s missing. That also applies to the list of schools spread across 4 columns in the desktop and laptop presentations. If you start on mobile you’ll have to move over to a larger screen device to see the 111 possibilities and pick your favorites.

Follow the Link of the Week…

Try an unusual marketing tool based on sticker prices over 4 years when you visit The College of New Jersey “Value Comparison” website.

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