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Quality Over Quantity – Higher Ed Inquiry Generation Trends Q1-Q3

November 5, 2015 Digital Media Solutions

Inquiry generation trends have shown a shift to quality so far in 2015. Part of this trend is due to the demand for more customized and exclusive inquiries. Inquiry providers continue to come up with new methods of generating these inquiries to best achieve client objectives. Some of these methods include:

  • Cost-Per-Click (CPC) Networks
  • Inbound Call Products
  • Hot Transfer
  • Retargeting

Prospects are driven to the advertiser’s branded landing page, ensuring that no other school is promoted within this generation path. These new inquiry generation methods strive to provide inquiries that are a better fit for schools and give them a competitive edge because of their exclusivity.

Pricing Structure Gets a Makeover

As methods for generating inquiries evolve, changes in pricing follow. Vendors are becoming more flexible with pricing options besides pay-per-inquiry, such as subscription, CPC and CPM. Overall, the number of education-specific inquiry providers is decreasing year over year. This trend originates from the high price of education. Higher education is expensive, and the inquiry generation pricing structure is adapting to become more customized as methods change. Increased return rates from schools and strict compliance standards have created heightened pressure for providers. LeadiD and the creation of other tools have contributed to this decrease by helping to identify fraudulent providers.

Cleaning Up Fraudulent Inquiry Providers

Scrub rates are lower as a result of the inquiry verification, scoring and fraud identification tools becoming more prominent. Initially, these tools can make it more difficult for the provider, but they balance out as time goes on and positive performance is proven. This trend means requirements are added based on these measures and fewer inquiries are being scrubbed after submission.

“Standard Channels” Fall Out of Favor

There has also been an increase in the number of inquiry provider channels. Fewer vendors have “standard channels” as the demand has shifted to more high-quality, customized services. Schools are willing to pay for these more exclusive opportunities and higher search rankings. As a result, they are getting better reporting and more customized pricing.

A Shift Toward Compliance

Compliance measures are increasing across all inquiry providers, leading to a decrease in compliance violations and an increase in quality. Thus far, the trend within higher education inquiry generation in 2015 is a shift of schools prioritizing quality over cost. High quality inquiries (and their higher costs) are being purchased now more than ever.

What You Can Expect in the Future

Inquiry providers marketing services providers and lead buyers, have responded to concerns of inquiry quality and compliance. Together, we are working on products that not only drive traffic to a stable and compliant environment, but also decrease the number of compliance violations while continually improving quality.

About the Author

Digital Media Solutions

Founded by a team of lifelong athletes, Digital Media Solutions (DMS), the fastest-growing independent digital performance marketing company. The company’s set of proprietary assets and capabilities in the world of performance marketing and marketing technology allow clients to meticulously target and acquire the right customers. DMS relentlessly pursues flawless execution for top brands within highly complex and competitive industries including mortgage, education, insurance, consumer brands, careers and automotive.

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