Marketing automation is helping secondary education marketing services provider Helix Education generate leads for colleges and universities.
Helix, formerly known as Datamark, works to help higher education institutions find and retain students. The customer base is primarily the heads of marketing and admissions, primarily in the for-profit sector.
About half of the company’s marketing budget is spent on digital marketing with a concentration in search, supplemented by other online efforts as well as television and print. Helix buys leads for clients, and also does remarketing to unsold leads and conducts lead nurturing programs.
Helix has worked with RedPoint Global for about four years to help manage the companies marketing database, which contains a little over 200 million records. “There are a lot of ways to segment that pool, depending on the school and the type of student they are looking to recruit,” says Rick Bentz, senior vice president of business intelligence.
The RedPoint interaction tool is used to help put incoming leads into a sequence of direct mail and email to nurture the prospect. The solution is also helping Helix ferret out data processing errors.
“These were really difficult to find—if we were off by one digit, it can get really messy when you get into remarketing,” says Bentz.
Creative in the company’s direct mail effort varies depending on the marketing segment—the copy and images that work to connect with someone going for bachelor’s degree isn’t the same as what you’d use to reach someone going for a master’s. Still, straightforward standard #10 envelopes with surveys walking a prospective student through an audit of where they are—and where they would like to be—typically perform well.
“The key is to get them to get in contact with the school,” says Bentz. “We’ve got to hold this person, and email and direct mail helps them move to the next step. Various campaigns help us get them through the different steps and milestones in the funnel funnel.”
Moving forward, Helix plans to implement more social media into its lead nurturing plans, using RedPoint to remarket to lists of unsold prospects and serve them ads for schools using models created of a particular schools successful leads. Mobile is a consideration, but last year’s changes to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act have made many schools wary of using mobile in their marketing plans.