As long as anyone can remember, sales and marketing teams are continually looking for ways to produce more revenue for the company in cost effective ways.  Typically, the most frequent method is to have marketing pour more leads and better leads into the top of the sales funnel. Who could argue with that?  However, what about those leads already in the funnel?  Are there additional ways to generate more sales from those groups of leads?  Did you know that, on average, more than 50% of a schools’ lead pool goes un-contacted? As my grandpa would so often say, “We need to squeeze more lemonade out of them lemons.”

As we look at higher education, most schools that are striving to grow their overall enrollments are now looking beyond improving the quality and quantity of leads.  Based on the competitive landscape, they have become more serious about improving the efficiency inside the sales funnel.  How can they enroll more students from the leads they already have in the system?

Over the last couple years, the for-profit schools have focused much of their lead conversion efforts on speed-to-lead as a point of differentiation.  There are various industry reports that attempt to quantify the impact of speed to contact, and common sense would certainly lead you to believe that being prompt in contacting a prospective student over the phone would have a positive impact on conversions.  However, what happens in the marketplace when speed-to-lead becomes more commonplace amongst the schools and it no longer is an effective differentiating factor?  Knowing that prospective students who submit their information to a lead aggregator will be contacted by multiple schools within the first hour, then what other ways can an institution improve their likelihood of success?

At Datamark, we’ve been working with schools on enrollment marketing for 25years and have seen the impacts of a well-executed post lead conversion strategy.  There is GOLD in the OLD.  In a nutshell, our general philosophy is that post lead conversion begins the moment a lead enters your system and continues for several years.  It needs to be simple, measurable, and produce an ROI.  And it must be consistent and methodical.   And best practices with the highest ROI include more than just calling and emailing; it includes direct mail too.

Our team at Datamark continues to work with various types of schools on conversion marketing programs and would welcome an opportunity to assist you as look for future improvements.  Contact Scott Jager at or 801-639-1657 to learn more about partnering with Datamark.

Steve Winchester

Steve is the CMO at Helix Education. He has been an advertising account executive for more than 20 years. Steve received his BS from the University of Utah.