Today, leading social media and membership management solutions makes it easy to stay connected through the entire process of student recruitment, retention and alumni interaction. When higher education institutions create private online member communities, they can appeal to prospective students by presenting a fun, interactive experience that enlightens and informs the prospect about student life, academics and more. Within the same private community, that prospective then evolves into a current student where the online experience changes to incorporate different groups, chapters and connections. Finally, once the current becomes an alum he or she remains in the database of that private community – only under a new member type, alumni. Never before has it been so easy to remain so connected and involved with your constituents!
Attracting New Students
College decisions way heavily on the minds of high school seniors, their parents and admission councilors. Sometimes minds are made up by legacies, sometimes available scholarships, sometimes tuition, but sometimes it comes down to the IT factor, feeling like you belong in a place, like you know you’ll fit in.
Not every prospect can come to your campus to visit. That’s why more and more colleges and universities are offering online campus tours. Some have even taken time to provide information on the surrounding areas, knowing that the town or city where an individual attends college will frequently become his or her launching point for attaining internships and eventually a future career.
Providing a glimpse into college life is essential to your recruiting efforts and social media is a wonderfully vast and efficient way to accomplish this. Whether you choose to do this through video representation, student blogs, virtual orientation methods or an interactive forum, YourMembership.com’s complete online member community can help you accomplish your goals and provide your prospective students with a real sense of belonging. You can even accept applications through our robust software.
But it doesn’t end there. Once your prospectives have become undergrads, you can continue deepening that connection through the same online member community. You can organize your online community the way that best fits your school, through an exchange of students, parents, professors, staff and/or alumni. Our social media component allows them to join groups that interest them and connect to one another from the security of a private online community, free from spam and surrounded by your branding. With the MyNetworks feature within YourMembership.com, your members also can quickly connect with others on outside networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, and many others. With polls and quizzes, you can gather their input. Plus you have multiple administrative features that allow quick reporting of information as well as event management and ecommerce…and so much more.
Remaining Engaged with Alumni
Finally, when their time at your beloved institution is over, they can stay connected as an active member of your alumni group. When your private online community encompasses the complete engagement cycle – from prospect to alumni – there’s no having to sign into a different site or figure out how to become part of the alumni group. It’s just a quick change of member type on the admin’s end and they have access to a completely new set of information on the same system they are familiar and comfortable with using. Plus, as alumni they can now give through your online donations feature. You maintain contact and they maintain their connections! And because they are members of the same online community throughout their prospective student days through their graduation day and beyond, they are more likely to continue their connection to you.
With YourMembership.com, you can allow all of your members to connect on the same site, while you retain control over their content viewing capabilities and permissions. With member types that you define, for example, you can make a senior survey available to only those in that class and hide it from others. You control permissions and content. You can even manage reunion information and event management on the site.
Your aim is to maintain a connection for a lifetime (maybe longer when you factor in legacies and friends). YourMembership.com gives you the online tools to help you accomplish that.