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  1. Marketing the Catholic School for Image and EnrollmentResearch and Pragmatic Applications2013Steven VirgadamoAssociate Director

  2. Catholic Schools: 2012-2013 • 6,685 Catholic Schools in the United States • 5,472 Elementary and Middle Schools • 1,213 Secondary Schools • 26 New Schools Opened • 148 Schools Closed or Consolidated • 2,166 (33%) Have Wait Lists

  3. Catholic Schools: 1980-2013 Research

  4. Catholic Schools: 1980-2013 Research

  5. Catholic Schools: 2012-2013 Research • Total Enrollment 1,415,244 • Minority Enrollment 19.6% • (14.3% Latino) • Non-Catholic Enrollment 15.9%

  6. Catholic Schools: 1980-2008 Research

  7. Catholic Schools: 1980-2013 Research

  8. Catholic Schools: 2012-2013 Research • Full-time Equivalent Professional Staff: 160,075 • Laity: 95.9% Men 20.9% Women 74.9% • Religious/Clergy: 4.1% Sisters 3.0% Brothers <1% Clergy <1%

  9. 1884 19641972 Plenary Council of Baltimore 20% of Catholic Schools Close An Historical Perspective “Of the educational programs available to the Catholic community, Catholic schools afford the fullest and best opportunity to realize the threefold purpose of Christian education ...”pp 101 TTJD

  10. 2013 1985 1990’s Today Kotler & Fox Write Book ACE An Historical Perspective

  11. Paradigm Shift From Mandates & Obligations to Options & Choices

  12. Paradigm Shift Parental Demand for Catholic Schools: Exercising Their Options Need For Marketing

  13. Marketing Catholic Schools Research Product Quality Catholic Education ++ Price Good Business + Management Place ++ PromotionEffective Marketing == ProfitPupils, People & Dollars

  14. Marketing is the process ofresearching, analyzing, planning, implementing, and controllingcarefully formulated programsdesigned to bring aboutvoluntary exchange relationshipswith specifically targeted audiences. Marketing Defined Research

  15. Catholic Schools Can Be Marketed for: Research • Image; • Enrollment; • Financial Resources.

  16. IMAGE ENROLLMENT RESOURCES Marketing Controls Research

  17. Understanding Enrollment Parents Choose Catholic Schools for: Research • Perception of better academic quality; • Structure, safety, discipline; • Religious values.

  18. The Enrollment Process Research Communications & Marketing Recruitment INTEREST (investigation/knowledge) INQUIRY (call/letter/event attendance) VISIT (tour/open house/shadow) Admissions APPLICATION (test/application/transcripts) ACCEPTANCE (committee/financial aid/letters/conditions) ENROLLMENT (forms/fees/course selection/orientation) Retention RE-ENROLLMENT (satisfaction surveys/communication)

  19. Recruitment Admissions Communication Retention Healthy Enrollment Cycle Research

  20. Moving Dissatisfaction Friends, not happy, personal Recruitment Admissions Communication Financial School Dismissal Academic/ Behavioral Retention Attrition in the Enrollment Cycle Research

  21. Justification of the Purchase Decision Research • More dollars are paid for the purchase; • When the purchase decision is close to one’s heart (emotional ties). The Value Proposition “Is this the best place for my child given the money I am spending?”

  22. Factors Influencing Student Retention Research • Development of one-to-one relationships; • Attending a school with friends; • Genuine sense of belonging; • Perception of success in the academic program; • Participation in co-curricular activities.

  23. Characteristics of Schools with High Retention Rates Research • Ensure a good fit between the student/family and the school; • Provide a high-quality academic and educational experience; • Have a faculty/staff who daily demonstrate a caring attitude; • Provide adequate financial aid; • Offer extensive co-curricular opportunities to involve students in campus life;

  24. Characteristics of Schools with High Retention Rates(cont’d) Research • Have a comprehensive and well-articulated counseling and advising program; • Provide comprehensive support services; • Identify and work with“at risk” students; • Build connections and foster a sense of belonging; • Provide a “look ahead” for the year to come; • Assess and work to fulfill student and parent expectations; • Never forget the relationship with the consumer by consistently meeting student needs.


  26. Marketing Mantra The consistent delivery of the right message, to the right person, in the right way, at the right time.

  27. The Right Person Research

  28. Defining Events Generational Values Who We Are The Right Person:Generational Characteristics Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  29. Defining Events Great Depression The New Deal Lindbergh’s Flight Gone with the Wind Pearl Harbor WWII Hiroshima Generational Values Dedication and Sacrifice Hard work Patience Respect for Authority Duty before pleasure Honor Dedicated Loyal Practical Dependable GI/Silent Generation Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  30. Defining Events Birth of TV Prosperity Cold War Political Assassinations Watergate Rock ‘n Roll Growth of Suburbia Women’s Lib Civil Rights Vietnam Generational Values Personal Gratification Entitlement Control Work Ethic No to Status Quo Optimism Driven Transformational “Self” Centered Baby Boomers Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  31. Defining Events Watergate Single parents Latchkey kids MTV AIDs Computers Challenger Glasnost Berlin Wall Generational Values Technosavvy Think globally Self-reliance Diversity Pragmatic Risk-takers Skeptical Independent Task-driven Generation X Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  32. Defining Events Internet chat School violence Over-involved parenting Multi-culturalism World Trade Center attacks Gulf War Iraq Generational Values Confidence plus Civic duty Achievement Street smarts Multi-tasking on steroids Fearless Optimistic Co-dependent Tenacious Generation Y Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  33. Business/civic leaders Catholics in the greater community Parents of alumni Alumni Grandparents Parents ofcurrent students School Board Faculty/staff School students The Right Person

  34. Business/civic leaders Catholics in the greater community Parents of alumni Alumni Grandparents Parents ofcurrent students School Board Faculty/staff School students The Right Person Internal Constituents External Constituents

  35. Internal constituents: School students Faculty/staff School Board Current school parents Grandparents Alumni Former school parents All donors External constituents: Prospective parents Newly baptized/Godparents Parishioners/Clergy Feeder schools and parishes Catholic, public, private Preschools, day cares, nursery schools, park programs Religious education programs Local nonprofits Nursing homes Business/civic leaders The Right Person

  36. The Right Person:Choice of a Private/Catholic Elementary School Research • By time child is 3½ years old • The child’smother is primary decision maker • Influencers: • Mother’s friends, neighbors, other moms; • Mother’s mother, sisters, extended family; • Kindergarten, primary teachers if known; • Nursery school teachers, day care providers.

  37. The Right Person:Choice of a Private/Catholic Secondary School Research • By the time a child is in sixth grade • In majority of cases, the child makes or overwhelmingly influences the decision • Influencers: • Friends, peers; • Parents (father); • Elementary school teachers; • Secondary school teachers; • Programs/activities.

  38. The Right Person Research Overview of Today’s Families: • Exhibit non-traditional configurations; • Have more preschool and extracurricular experience; • Want fast and frequent response; • Use and expect more technology; • Expect personalized attention to unique child; • Demand academics to be exceptional for all abilities; • Are overcommitted with less free/volunteer time; • Are further removed from the Catholic Church.

  39. Marketing a Service Marketing isnot only concerned withtalking to the school’s publics… More importantly,service marketing is concerned withlistening to those publics. When you are marketing a service you are marketing a relationship.

  40. Test scores; Honor roll; Student-Teacher ratio; Graduation and high school acceptances; Integration of technology; Classroom settings; Daily schedule; Faculty training and accomplishments; Scholastic competition and awards; Curricular highlights; Special academic programs. The Right Message Better academic quality:

  41. Faith integration/Catholic identity throughout; Religious curriculum; Opportunities for worship; Role of the Pastor and other religious; Service expectations; Masses; Sacramental preparation; Prayer services. The Right Message Religious values:

  42. Environment of respect; Classroom management; Student mentoring; Rules and expectations for behavior; Safety procedures on campus; Before and after school programs; Extensive co-curricular opportunities; Counseling and advising program; Transportation; Parent involvement. The Right Message Safety, structure, and discipline:

  43. The Right Way Research Generational media preferences:

  44. GI/Silent Ages 64+ Personal direct mail letters; Print (newspaper/magazine); TV; Face-to-face event marketing. Baby Boomers Ages 45-63 Direct mail letters; Postcards; Print (newspaper/magazine); TV; Web supported. The Right Way Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  45. Generation X Ages 27-44 TV and radio; Movie trailers; Phone messages; Email marketing (not texting). Generation Y Ages 8-26 Text messaging; Voicemail; Email; Internet sites. The Right Way Source: National Center for Health Statistics via

  46. Marketing Focus: Acquire address lists of parents with children under 2 years of age within your community. Build a relationship with first-time parents (mothers) as early as possible. Provide convenient opportunities for interaction with school teachers and parents. Provide clear examples and statistics on student and faculty accomplishments from academic and spiritual perspectives. Enlist Pre-K and Kindergarten parents to actively refer and recruit new parents for enrollment. Use technology both to establish and maintain a dialog with Generation X parents. The Right Way: Generation X/Y Research

  47. Marketing Focus: When your messages are relevant, the consumer welcomes an opportunity to engage. The legacy media channels deliver one content choice to millions of consumers. The born digital media networks deliver millions of content choices to one consumer. Word-of-mouth has always been one of the end benefits of good marketing. The Right Way: Generation X/Y Research

  48. The Right Time: Communication Matrix

  49. Key Components: General School Information Mission Statement  Leadership and Personnel Strategic Goals Needs of the School Catholic Identity Academic Excellence/Curriculum  Extracurricular Activities  Social Interaction Safety, Structure, and Discipline  Home-School Communication  Parent Involvement Infused with: Happy children Unique aspects High quality True to mission Faith-filled Goal-oriented Strong community The Right Mix

  50. Cost-Effective Marketing Build image and relationships: via word of mouth, via print, via Web/electronic, via on-site events.