The Eduventures® Student Sentiment Research™ Report Reveals Five Critical Student Segments for Recruiters and Marketers

December 6, 2023

New Research Identifies Student Segments and Effective Strategies Institutions Should Implement for Engaging Each Population to Stay Relevant in Today’s Competitive Higher Education Climate

Boston, MA – December 7, 2023 – Encoura, an industry-leading educational technology and research organization, announced today the publication of the Eduventures 2023 Student Sentiment Research Report. The annual report provides firsthand insights on student perceptions about institutional marketing and communication, as well as students’ college search behaviors, to empower higher education enrollment and marketing officers with more effective engagement strategies.

With students coming out of high school in a pandemic, uncertainties of admissions post-affirmative action, ongoing public discussions questioning the value of a college education, and a drop in high school graduates, it’s clear that colleges and universities need to develop intentional and effective outreach strategies to stay relevant and attain enrollment goals. How should institutions needing to move away from a “one size fits all” approach to recruitment strategically use their time and resources? Which channels and content effectively engage students from critical populations that colleges and universities may be missing?

This year’s Eduventures Student Sentiment Research Report pinpoints five important high school student segments and provides insights on the college search activities and preferences of each group. Additionally, it details specific outreach strategies that institutions should leverage to most effectively engage each group and concludes with key practical steps enrollment and marketing teams with limited bandwidth can take to be most successful.

Key Research Findings Include:

  • Prioritizing three digital strategies can help reach out-of-state students.
  • Digital ads reach first-generation students from low-income households.
  • Latine students can benefit from a grassroots recruitment approach.
  • Social media helps black students assess fit.
  • Sophomores are covering the basics of college search in stealth mode.

“As the competition for high school students’ attention increases, it’s a crucial time for colleges and universities to commit to outreach strategies that will have the biggest impact toward their missions and enrollment goals. This year’s Student Sentiment Research empowers institutions with specific methods they can leverage to most successfully grow and diversify the prospective student populations they engage,” said Johanna Trovato, Eduventures Principal Analyst and primary author of this study.

Today’s high school students are constantly receiving messages about what their futures should look like. It’s essential for institutions in a competitive market to prioritize their most important recruitment tool–their website–while taking strategic steps to diversify recruitment plans to meet students where and how they are best served. This report provides forward-thinking outreach strategies that will help institutions attract, engage, and enroll the best students for their schools.