Online Strategies for Lifting Student Placement Rate

by jon 21. January 2011 01:54

Career Services professionals realize that as their schools grow so must their network of employer contacts interested in hiring their grads.

 

Where a school’s admissions department generally has the marketing dollars to promote student growth, the career services department is rarely afforded the same privileges when growing their student placement rate.

 

Here are some ways you can cost-effectively insure your placement rate is well positioned for growth - and that you are taking advantage of all the benefits the online space has to offer:

 

·         Teach your students to interact with you online via as many real world online communication tools as possible – this will make them more adept at using these tools when looking for work on their own, as well as make them more

          desirable to employers when hired.

 

·         Take advantage of your school site to promote your schools’ career services department not only to prospective students as an advantage to enrolment, but to your current students and alumni. Give them a reason to interact with you

          online by providing tools such as job postings boards, or a mail system where you can distribute job postings to individuals or entire program/s.

 

·         Use your career services site to also distribute career services event announcements and allow your students/alumni to register online.

 

·         Distribute material/learning via a webinar or WebEX where students and alumni register and sign-in to watch the presentation and interact with you as a group.

 

·          Create and manage a program specific online resource library for your students as part of your career services site. Research and add leading online publications, blogs, forums, associations, job boards specific to the industries your

           programs are aligned with.  If this page is optimized for the engines correctly using strong SEO if will also attract new students to your site. Link exchanges with outside sites, is a great way to build traffic to yours.

 

·         Encouraging your students to promote themselves will go a long way to helping raise placement. Empowering them with a self-managed online portfolio tool, which allows them to upload their images, reels, projects, resumes, bios

          and so much more, allows them to simply use a link to promote themselves to employers. Our School Portfolio Connect(tm) career services tool does just that.

 

·          By empowering your students with an online portfolio - and having them use this link to virally show their work on social networking sites, job boards, and on their resumes - they attract employers to your site to view work coming out

           of all of your programs. What they might not need in one area of their organizations today, they might need tomorrow – or they can pass your school site onto a colleague responsible for additional hiring inside the company.

 

·         Establish a job posting tool, which allow your department as well as employers to post and manage their job postings to individual students, entire programs, or all students at the school.

 

·         Secure an email marketing/list management firm to professionally promote your employer events via email to your current employer file. Remember to always include a viral component on each piece of email creative to allow for viral

          pass-along from recipient to colleague.  Drive all registrations back into your career services site via an online form. Your provider should be able to provide all of your database and data mirroring/list management/segmentation/list

          rental/online registration/opt-in and opt-out processes/creative development and optimization/tracking and analysis. StudentROI’s data and email marketing arm emailbank.ca does this currently for many of your educational clients.

 

·         Providing the option to opt-out is not only law – it is also a great way to clean your lists of those who are generally not interested in hearing from you or have gone out of business – you will then save time and money in the future

          trying to contact them via phone or direct mail.

 

·         Business to business opt-in email list rental for acquiring new employer leads is a cost effective media channel. You can use the same creative you send to your current employer file promoting your events to this file as well. All who

          register now become part of your new and improved employer file.  

 

·         Consider a career services site independent of, but one that works in tandem with, your school site. The School Portfolio Connect(tm) platform offers self managed portfolio tools, job posting tools, mail platform tools, as well as a

          career services site to serve an d market all of these tools within via our ourstudentportfolios.com site.

 

·         It is one thing to teach your students to engage with you online, another to supply them the tools which will empower them and have them act virally for you. The final piece of the puzzle is traffic generation. What is your strategy for

         generating traffic for the site/s. One way is to engage a strong SEO company that knows the education vertical.  When we are contracted by one of our clients to handle their search engine optimization (SEO) we make sure we start

         with their objectives: target industries; graduate programs; calls to action inside their marketing plans i.e. employer events, site registration, etc. We track and analyze traffic to determine site conversion. If more traffic is needed we

         create a PPC campaign now knowing the amount of clicks we need to produce to generate a lead.

 

·         Pay per click (PPC) marketing is also a cost effective media channel and one that allows for deep reporting via Google Adwords. PPC allows you to monitor the keywords that have the highest ROI and adjust your campaigns to your

          strength. You also have the ability to turn traffic on/off or up/down depending on your needs. Another great advantage is you can set up and tailor your campaigns by program or area of interest.

 

To discuss how studentROI can help you promote your students online to employers looking to hire them via a single or multi channel approach please contact us today.

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