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Why Higher Ed Needs Conversational Marketing

by Sirley Carballo · Jun 07, 2022

Four students looking at their cell phones with chat bubbles.

Conversational marketing has emerged as a top inbound marketing strategy for companies everywhere.

Through the use of embedded chat boxes and instant messaging, marketing and sales teams across the world are increasing interactions with prospects while saving time and money.

71% of consumers expect companies to communicate with them in real time.

The Right Technology For Staff and Students

According to recent findings, 71% of consumers expect companies to communicate with them in real time. Now more than ever, it’s time for higher education institutions to get ahead of the curve and integrate the industry standard marketing tactics that today’s students have come to expect from their favorite brands.

As the landscape of higher education continues to shift towards a digital-first approach, institutions need the right technology solution that will allow them to quickly and personally connect with students at scale.

You have 10 seconds to capture a lead’s interest when they arrive on your site.

Letting Students Take Control of Their Educational Journey

Today’s students are in the driver’s seat of their educational journey. No longer swayed by university-first messaging, prospective students want to engage with potential schools on their own terms and on their own time. Plus, they can sniff out the cookie cutter and the copy-pasted.

And there’s no time to waste. According to Nielsen Norman Group, you have 10 seconds to capture the interest of a lead on your website. That’s why it’s crucial that schools engage students right away on every single page of their website.

Bottom line: Students want the degree that will land them the career. With conversational marketing, colleges that embed chat boxes, integrate SMS capabilities into their recruitment, and take advantage of one-to-one personalized video messaging will have an advantage over schools that are sticking to the same old mass emails and mail drops.

Following up with a lead within 5 minutes after initial contact can even increase conversation rates by up to 9 times.

A Personalized Student-Centered Experience at Scale

They say timing is everything.  This is never more true than when creating a meaningful, realtime engagement with a student when they are actively engaging with your institution.  In fact, according to, following up with a lead within 5 minutes after initial contact can even increase conversation rates by up to 9 times! 

With features like in-app notifications and profile views, counselors know who they’re talking to at all times, and this can significantly reduce the turnaround time to respond to a student. 

A flexible and easy-to-use communication solution like Element451’s new Conversations Module allows students to take the first step and engage schools in the same ways they engage their favorite brands and products like:

  • Amazon's 24/7 chat
  • Ebay's live voice assistant
  • Sephora's virtual artist
  • Nike's social media accounts
  • Domino's SMS instant ordering

By moving away from long request for information (RFI) forms, integrating automatic ice breakers, or allowing anonymous chats, Element451 partner institutions are going one step further to remove any barriers standing in the way of student engagement.

Chatbots and embedded messengers can reduce customer service costs by 30%.

Save Time and Money With Tools That Do It All

Additionally, recent findings suggest that chatbots and embedded messengers can reduce customer service costs by 30%, a welcome statistic for higher education institutions that have already suffered from a dwindling workforce.

With tools like automatic association or shared inboxes, today’s conversational marketing strategies go beyond what we’ve come to expect from ed-tech.

It’s time colleges and universities acclimate themselves into the new digital-first landscape. 

Schedule a quick demo to see Element451’s Conversations module at work. The students are waiting.


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