Increase Alumni Membership, Donations & Student Referrals with Digital Marketing


While driving new student enrollment is often the number one goal, it’s important to remember the ones who walked the halls before. After all, alumni are the reason universities continue to thrive.

You might be thinking, why spend all of this time and effort marketing to former students? Is it really worth it? Direct mail and email has been working just fine. Why switch things up?

The fact is that your former students aren’t getting any older. You heard me right – you’re asking young people to help you out, and today’s generation expects more from their alma mater. We need to use creative ways to engage and captivate former students.

Here’s a quick cheat sheet to help you along the way.

Don’t Forget PPC!

It might seem like a wasteful idea to pay for clicks when you already know your audience. However, a small budget can go a long way in PPC. It’s a good idea to bid on branded terms. This way, you have control over the messaging. You can then spark interest in your former students by highlighting upcoming events or alumni offerings.

Marketing Automation

This is a fantastic way to reach the right person at the right time. By focusing in on how engaged your alumni are, you can observe their digital body language and act accordingly. Are they opening and clicking on all of your emails? Then they might be ready to act, whether you’re looking for donations or to make them a member. You should take advantage by reaching out to those highly engaged alumni.

Social is Their Playground

When I think about my college days, I remember fun in the dorm rooms and suspenseful football games – and I smile! Your alumni probably miss you and would love to hear from you. If you offer them reminders of the glory days on social media, you get to tug on their heart strings. Remind them of what you gave them, and in doing so, compel them to give back.

Remember: These people are your greatest advocates. Let them know that you still care by taking the time to engage with them. If your digital marketing appeals to former students at an emotional level, you’ll not only drive new membership or increase donations, but you’ll also activate that warm fuzzy feeling. And don’t forget to share your results with your counterparts in admissions. More engaged alumni equals more enrollments.

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