Welcome back to Week 5 of “The One Thing You can do to Raise Enrollment,” a six week “how-to” series.
Let’s review the steps so far:
Are you working in higher education because you want to effect positive change in the world?
Are you unhappy with declining enrollment?
People shopping around for colleges and classes have more access to more information about you, and your competitors, than ever before.
Would you describe yourself as helpful?
What if there is one SMALL thing you can do to make it easy for students to choose you (and thus GCC)? The employee bio page is by far the most under-exploited opportunity available to intentionally connect to students during the decision making process.
Providing students with what you want them to know about you works to develop positive preconceptions about you. Conversely, do nothing and you risk falling off your potential students’ radar completely, and losing them to a competitor.
The “One Thing” is deceptively small, yet powerful.
How it works: When students can relate to what they see and read on your employee bio page, they feel immediately connected to you.
(Before we proceed to the “Before and After,” my apologies to Marty Reker. We have never met. You were randomly chosen to be a part of this process because your name appeared in a recent college press release.)
Marty’s employee bio page BEFORE:
Marty’s employee bio page AFTER:
These elements compel students to choose you. But why?
These elements work to build not only your reputation as a competent instructor, but also builds the perception of a shared identity between you and the reader. Feelings of having a shared identity holds a powerful and influential sway over the reader.
Robert Cialdini is recognized as one of the top authors in field research on the psychology of influence. In his most recent book, Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade, he shares newly published research results: people develop powerful feelings of unity the more they identify with you. “Anything that is self-connected gets an immediate lift in our eyes. Sometimes the connections can be trivial but can still serve as springboards to persuasive success.”
When thinking about what to put on your employee bio page, don’t be stiff – be relatable.
So, after 5 weeks, you now know almost everything you need to know about the “one thing” you can do to influence the student decision-making process, raise enrollment, and raise GCC’s reputation in an increasingly crowded marketplace: Take control of the persuasive, engaging power of the employee bio page.
Come back for our final installment in WEEK 6: Now what? The “One Thing” and the final step.