While much of your attention will be focused on admissions, there’s another, even bigger, group of people equally deserving of your engagement: your alumni. In this post, we will look at the value of your alumni and the way they can drive donations and student enquiries alike. We will then discuss how you can tap into this value by building a loyal alumni community – with a little help from OpenApply!
Why Your Alumni Matter
Whether they were with you for their entire school life or had to transition to another school at some point, your alumni should be your school’s loyal supporters, and this can be expressed in a number of different ways. For example, they can help your school with admissions and recruitment, giving you the benefit of word of mouth marketing and an extensive social and professional network of global contacts.
It is your alumni who can spearhead your fundraising and philanthropy efforts, and who can help offer careers advice to current students. Those who have attained influential positions can assist with lobbying, while famous alumni – such as those who have excelled in a particular field and achieved global recognition – can enhance your reputation further.
So how can international and independent schools like yours strengthen their alumni engagement and benefit from all this?
How OpenApply Can Help Build Your Alumni Community
There are a number of ways OpenApply can help you build strong connections with your alumni and grow a community. These include:
- Meaningful data collection – all the information you need about each student/alumnus/leaver is stored on their profile, so (with their permission) you will always have their contact details, interests and other data securely held on file.
- Easy email communication – with minimal effort on your part, you are able to easily communicate with alumni in bulk, prompting them to update their information.
- Personalised emails – OpenApply’s CRM module allows you to personalise the emails you send out to your alumni, helping them feel they are still very much a part of your community with visually bespoke, branded and engaging content, customisable by you and your school.
- Email segmentation – to make sure you keep in touch with alumni with news that they will find relevant and interesting, you can also send emails to individual groups of alumni based on their own interests. For instance, if they loved rugby when they were a student with you, you could send them updates about the performance of the school rugby team, any new coaches, the outcomes of any tournaments you enter, and so on.
- Custom data fields – these give you the ability to track where your leavers have gone, such as which corporation they work for. This may prove useful, for example, for setting up careers advice or work experience for current students in particular firms.
These are just some of the ways in which OpenApply can support the development of a strong alumni community at your school. For lots more ideas, sign up for our upcoming webinar on June 16, 9:00 GMT+1