Choosing the right higher education consulting partner is a tough decision. Not only is your financial investment at stake but so is the face and brand of your university. The research process can be daunting, but considering the following questions will help you find your perfect agency partner:
- What is the agency’s average program return on investment? It’s important to ensure you get as much as possible for every marketing dollar you invest. Decide what your target ROI is, and partner with an agency capable of delivering on that goal.
- How is the agency structured, and does it have a specialized education vertical? Odds are that an agency will be better education consultants if they have a team focused solely on the unique needs, and opportunities, afforded by the industry.
- How would it handle your specific pain points? You know what makes your department and university tick (rigid brand values, grueling approval processes, frequent communication lapses, etc.). You need to know – up front – that a marketing company is going to meet your needs in a way that makes sense for your organization.
- Can it provide client reviews? It may seem obvious, but if an agency isn’t able, or willing, to provide references from clients in the education market, you should see a big red flag!
- Does the agency practice what it preaches? All education marketing companies will explain a multitude of digital marketing strategies and the value of each solution, but not all of them will prove their own advice. A digital marketing agency that loves its industry and understands the effectiveness of its capabilities will be successful in marketing its own brand. If you see an agency not creating meaningful content, maintaining active social profiles or appearing in Google paid and organic search results, it won’t be as passionate or successful in driving results for your university.
Take the first step towards forming your marketing partnership: reach out to your short-list of prospective agencies. Armed with these considerations you’ll gain valuable insights into the value each potential relationship could drive.
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