More Than Half of Higher Education Institutions Did Not Meet Enrollment Goals In 2013

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According to CUnet sponsored survey of college and university admissions directors

Three quarters of admissions directors were at least moderately concerned about meeting their new student enrollment goals in 2013, according to the Inside Higher Ed “2013 Survey of College and University Admissions Directors.” Accordingly, only 41 percent of admissions directors achieved their new student enrollment goals as of May 1.

“Higher education enrollment has become increasingly challenging over the past few years. No longer can you just open your doors and expect students to walk in,” said Todd Eicher, CEO of CUnet. “Successful enrollment marketing requires a dedicated team executing a strategic, performance-based plan designed to increase enrollments while also tightly managing the cost of recruitment. With the right plan – and the right tracking in place – not only do students walk in, but you know why and exactly how much it cost.”

CUnet, a leading provider of digital enrollment marketing solutions designed specifically for higher education institutions, has helped schools meet their enrollment goals since 2003 with customized campaigns that combine pay-per-inquiry and other digital media tactics. Their technology, Sparkroom, is the most widely deployed software solution available for enrollment marketing automation. By integrating every aspect of enrollment marketing into one web-based platform, Sparkroom helps enrollment marketers automate, integrate and analyze their data to make smarter media planning and optimization decisions.

“Sparkroom helps enrollment marketers identify their best performing sources and automate processes based on the propensity to convert,” explained Al Huizenga, CUnet’s director of Sparkroom. “The built-in predictive modeling engine provides the needed intelligence to optimize a recruitment campaign and achieve enrollment goals in this increasingly competitive higher education marketplace.”

The “2013 Survey of College and University Admissions Directors” report was developed from the results of a quantitative Gallup survey of senior-level public and private nonprofit college and university admissions and enrollment officers conducted in August on behalf of Inside Higher Ed to better understand recruitment policies. Highlights of the study include:

  •     Increased effort is anticipated for the recruitment of undergraduates – especially full-time, transfer and minority students
  •     85 percent of schools included in the survey are increasing enrollment of their online degree or certificate programs (asked only of respondents from schools with online degree/certificate programs) and 32 percent feel the online programs are very important to their institution’s total enrollment
  •     College counselors, data-driven college counseling tools and financial aid/scholarship websites are believed to be the most effective tools to help students find the best fitting institution; college rankings were ranked the poorest

Inside Higher Ed will present the results of the “2013 Survey of College and University Admissions Directors” at the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) 69th National Conference in Toronto, Canada on Friday, September 20. The survey results are also available for download at

CUnet and the Sparkroom team will be exhibiting at the NACAC conference at booth #225 where conference attendees can learn more about strategic enrollment marketing and enrollment marketing automation. Demonstrations of Sparkroom will be conducted directly at the booth.

For more information about CUnet’s expertise, products and services in higher education enrollment marketing, visit For more information about Sparkroom, the enrollment application for higher education, visit

About CUnet
For almost a decade, CUnet’s enrollment marketing experts have helped colleges and universities reach, recruit and enroll the best students for their programs. With the industry’s leading technology platform, a comprehensive set of online marketing services and a network of targeted media providers, CUnet partners with higher education institutions to deliver student candidates, holding itself accountable to lowering overall acquisition costs while driving enrollment growth. CUnet’s recruitment marketing services are supported by a network of proprietary websites, including their flagship site,, and the student advisor service. CUnet is dedicated to providing the highest standards of transparency and compliance while promoting ethical marketing practices in postsecondary education. Headquartered in Paramus, N.J., CUnet is a subsidiary of Nelnet (NYSE: NNI), a leader in education planning and financing for more than 30 years. For more information, visit

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Kathy Bryan
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