title logo
4 minute read

Yielding Students from Freshman Year


Baylor University, an R1, Division 1, faith-based institution, developed a reliable recruitment and communication strategy for engaging high school seniors. However, enrollment team members knew that the next step to enroll their best-fit students was to refocus recruitment and marketing efforts from seniors, who had usually already made their college decisions, to younger students earlier in the college search process. Baylor knew that in order to optimize enrollment over the next few years, it needed to team up with a reliable enrollment partner that served as part of its team, focusing combined efforts on engaging freshman and sophomore students from the beginning of their high school journeys.


In order to successfully execute a multi-year endeavor to increase freshman and sophomore inquiries, Baylor teamed up with an enrollment partner who understands long-term strategy and has the advanced technology to support its plan: Encoura. With this enrollment consulting expertise, Baylor gleaned new methods of adapting its recruitment strategy to the behavior of today’s early high school students who are often stealthy, researching colleges earlier than they reveal. Additionally, the university’s enrollment team leveraged Encoura’s Smart+® Predictive Model to focus its engagement efforts on freshman and sophomore students most likely to enroll.

Funnel Optimization

Strategic Enrollment Consulting

Funnel & Market Analysis

Advanced Student Search

Encoura Combined Dataset

Smart+® Predictive Model


Enrollment Lens®

Class Planner®

encoura quote image
One of the things I love about Encoura is the ability to lean on the enrollment consultants to be the experts in our field of what's coming up and changing in the market. Especially early on in the process, it was important that I could bounce ideas and strategy changes off of them and get their valuable feedback.
Associate Director of Enrollment Management Marketing
Associate Director of Enrollment Management Marketing logo


Since taking ownership of its student search and funnel growth, Baylor has successfully implemented a strategic enrollment plan to engage high school students before seniors solidify their college lists. As a result of the university’s new strategy targeting freshmen and sophomores, the enrollment team has developed a deep understanding of Gen Z search volume and messaging tactics, and achieved an impressive 23.6% growth in inquiries. By adeptly cultivating relationships with the right students from the onset of their high school careers through graduation, Baylor knows that it’s set up for success to hit application and enrollment goals year after year.

Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
23.6% increase in inquiries over 3 years
Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
Cross-campus collaboration success & university leadership support
Website engagement 5 times higher than previous campaigns
Ownership of student search and marketing

Read More Case Studies

case studies card

University of Tulsa: Ahead of the Competition

The University of Tulsa wanted to launch their enrollment by building their brand awareness and getting to know students earlier in the recruiting process. With their new strategy in place, the enrollment team was able to connect with high-quality students and better their engagement to increase connections earlier in their recruitment cycle.

Read More
case studies card

Winthrop University: Recruiting Smarter to Strengthen Student Retention

In order to overcome declining enrollment rates from the pandemic, Winthrop University leveraged predictive modeling to boost their recruitment efforts in primary markets while opening opportunities in new markets. This led to a 22% increase in enrollment in the first year, as well as a 90% freshman retention rate.

Read More
case studies card

Louisiana State University Shreveport: Empowering Students Digitally

Louisiana State University Shreveport aimed to expand to new markets to advertise their programs and differentiate their brand, even with a smaller team of recruiters. Through execution of a strong, new digital marketing strategy, the university saw a 130% increase in new market applications and a 109% increase in applications from minority students.

Read More
case studies card

University of Nebraska-Lincoln: Keeping in Mind What Students Really Value

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln launched digital engagement and email campaigns to connect with prospective students at their specific stages of enrollment. Along with increased engagement, these campaigns resulted in the highest levels of in-state student post-view and post-click interactions.

Read More
get started

Get Started

Encoura is ready to connect with you to get started on your best strategy. Learn more about how higher education leaders are better understanding their market to take their institutions to the next level.