TargetX Honors Albright College with the 2nd Annual "X Award" for Excellence in Student Recruiting

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College marketing firm TargetX has recognized Albright College for its innovative and integrated recruiting communications program aimed at telling the school's story through the people who know it best -- its students and faculty.

and when I asked them why they decided to come and see us, all of them said that one reason was they really felt they connected with the student stories they read in Faces. It's very rewarding to see a plan succeed that way.

At first glance, Albright College doesn't seem that much different than a thousand other small schools that say they're devoted to students and committed to teaching. But it is different, says Admission Director Chris Boehm, and his challenge was explaining that to prospective students in a way that was compelling and convincing.

The solution was to rely on Albright students and professors to describe what makes the college and its people so special, and to tell the stories online, in print and in person as part of a fully-integrated communications campaign. That approach has been recognized by one of the nation's leaders in higher education marketing.

TargetX, which provides recruiting technology and services to 450 colleges around the county, presented Albright College with the 2nd annual "X Award" for excellence in college recruiting. The award was presented by TargetX CEO Brian Wm. Niles to Boehm and Albright's Greg Eichhorn at the recent annual conference of the National Association for College Admission Counseling in Seattle.

"We are extremely pleased to be recognized for our innovative marketing and recruiting techniques with the X Award," said Eichhorn, who is Vice President for Enrollment Management and Dean of Admission at Albright. "Our integrated approach is one that we feel will become the industry standard."

Albright worked with TargetX to develop a recruiting communications campaign consisting of a series of unique publications, a new college website, online tools favored by college-bound students, and enhanced in-person events for admitted applicants.

"The campaign revolves around the theme of 'Faces' to focus on the people of Albright and their personal stories instead of the traditional method of promoting programs and statistics," said Boehm, who worked with TargetX to make the campaign a reality.

"We proposed this campaign based on what we've learned about the way today's students search for the right college," explained Niles. "They are starting their college search earlier in high school and are spending 75 percent of their time searching online. They are looking for real stories from real people, and are turned off by marketing-speak. And they are attending on-campus events in greater numbers than ever before, but are looking for authenticity and differentiation."

So TargetX and Albright created "Faces," a series of publications highlighting individual students and professors who share their personal stories and experiences. Each person's page includes a link to their blog or to the college's social network so prospective students and parents can jump online and interact with the individual. In-person events, such as open houses, provide opportunities for visitors to meet some of the "faces" they've read about and corresponded with in the publications and online.

"I talked recently with a group of students visiting our campus," said Boehm, "and when I asked them why they decided to come and see us, all of them said that one reason was they really felt they connected with the student stories they read in Faces. It's very rewarding to see a plan succeed that way."

About Albright College:
Located in Reading, Pa., Albright is a private college that offers a liberal arts curriculum with an interdisciplinary focus. With a student/faculty ratio of 13:1, Albright enrolls about 1,650 undergraduates in traditional programs, some 500 students in accelerated degree programs in nine locations, and 100 students in the master's program in education. The college is proud of its diversity, with international and domestic students of color representing 23% of its student body.

Albright's hallmarks are connecting fields of learning, collaborative teaching and learning, and a flexible curriculum that allows students to create an individualized education. By their senior year, about two-thirds of students have a dual, combined or interdisciplinary concentration. In 2007, students had more than 200 unique combinations of concentrations.

Albright College's "Faces" social networking site is dedicated to connecting future students with Albright's current students, faculty and alumni.

For more information on Albright, visit:
http://www.albright.edu

About TargetX:
TargetX is the leader in relationship recruiting, helping 450 colleges engage prospects through more effective communication and powerful relationship management. TargetX offers technology and services to help colleges build and maintain relationships with today's highly social students.

TargetX has also developed a reputation in higher education for objective and expert counsel. The company offers a popular series of workshops and seminars; provides presentations at dozens of conferences around the country; generates three different blogs for admissions officers; and produces the only podcast devoted to student recruiting and college marketing.

The company's "X Award" is presented annually to honor exceptional recruiting campaigns and projects. The 2007 award went to Hendrix College in Arkansas for revolutionizing the all-important campus visit.

For more information on TargetX, visit:
http://www.targetx.com

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Ray Ulmer
TargetX
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