Insights by Jason Smith

Higher Education Marketing for Adult Learners: 7 Key Messages You Can Learn from SNHU

May 07, 2015

Do you want to know the secret messaging strategy of one the most recognized non-profit online schools in the country? It isn’t confidential. It isn’t stolen. It’s right out in the open – on YouTube:


Strategies to Overcome Your Undergraduate Enrollment Problem

April 14, 2015

“Fifteen years from now more than half of the universities [in America] will be in bankruptcy,” predicts Harvard Business School Professor Clayton Christensen. He’s not alone. Financial services firm TIAA CREF anticipates closures among the “1,600 schools in the U.S.


5 Ways Website Personalization Can Fix Your College Enrollment Problem

March 24, 2015

Did you know of prospective students who complete applications, only 15% apply on their first visit? And, more than 54% of eventual applicants visit college and university websites five or more times before applying?

It’s great they’re coming back but, if your school is like many, you don’t need prospects. You need more enrolled students.


The One Metric That Proves College Websites Are Worth the Investment

March 05, 2015


That’s the number of revenue-producing business metrics most college and university web marketing teams use to prove their impact to the school’s bottom-line. Zero. Zilch.

It’s not that they don’t want to prove value. It’s just that colleges’ data systems are byzantine, isolated, and hard to connect. Plus, there aren’t universally accepted goals for a college website. Showing impact is hard.


Why Professional Services Websites Fail at Selling

February 26, 2015

I love that our work affords us access to lots of smart and charismatic leaders. They have great depth of knowledge, are experts in their field, and are fascinating to engage in conversation. Partnering with them is an incredibly enriching experience.


Better Google Analytics Benchmarks – Setting Conversion Goals for College and University Websites

January 29, 2015

Page views, session duration and bounce rate provide a solid health check for your college or university website. But this is only the beginning. We recommend setting up conversion goals in Google Analytics. A conversion goal typically measures a completed activity such as:

  • Campus visit registrations
  • Requests for information
  • Beginning the application process

We call it a conversion when a user reaches the “thank you” page after submitting a form.


2015 Analytics Benchmarks for College, University, and Higher Education Websites

January 27, 2015

With the launch of each new higher education website, our client asks: What’s a good benchmark? How are we doing compared to other peer schools? Are we doing better than the old site?

We believe typical measures – sessions, page views, time on site and bounce rate – are good starting points for analytics. These show the overall health of your website, but in order to tie success to business goals, you’ll need to dig into conversion goals.


Mobile and Tablet Analytics Benchmark Data for Higher Education, College and University Websites

December 23, 2014

As colleges and universities seek to improve their websites and the prospective student journey, the push toward a responsive website and a “mobile first” approach usually top the list. To help university marketing departments better understand mobile trends for higher education websites, we’ve compiled benchmark data collected over the past year.


The One Question About UX Projects that Scares Product Managers

December 09, 2014

Often we hear from software company CEOs and product managers intent on making user experience a top priority. They’re always really excited by the idea of improving their UX and we completely understand. In fact, we get excited too – user experience is what we do.

Our first step is starting a conversation with them to map out the possibilities and process for improving their product: