Students’ Communication Expectations Are Higher Than Ever Before. Can Colleges Keep Up?
Facebook Linked In Twitter
8 min read
June 30, 2023

Students’ Communication Expectations Are Higher Than Ever Before. Can Colleges Keep Up?

Mongoose Gradient Blue Teal
Facebook Linked In Twitter

We all see it: The experiences that students have outside of higher education are elevating their expectations when it comes to engaging with colleges and universities. Think Netflix’s highly personalized content recommendations, Amazon’s one-day delivery options, and the many websites that offer AI-powered chat to quickly work through customer service questions.

Fortunately, we’ve come a long way when it comes to communication in education, so there are tools available that will help you meet these expectations. Text messages are one of those tools, but what’s even more powerful is a combination of multiple modes of communication.

We’re talking about website chat — a powerful yet underutilized medium that, when applied effectively, can lead to increased retention, happier students, and enhanced engagement with your institution. From the classroom to the administrative office, live chat for higher education is a game-changer.

Read on to get an overview of the key trademarks of a comprehensive, fully functioning chat solution for higher education, and learn the numerous benefits of incorporating a chatbot on your college’s website.

The Power of Chat in Higher Education

From the most straightforward questions to complex administrative procedures, your institution’s website is a treasure trove of knowledge. However, with the sheer volume of information available, it can be overwhelming for users to find what they’re looking for — and this is especially true for first-generation students who have no help from those who have navigated higher education before!

Enter Cadence Chat, a chatbot solution within Mongoose’s innovative engagement platform that streamlines the ocean of information available into instant, easily digestible responses.

Imagine a higher education institution where the flood of information on a website is streamlined to a 6-8 second response. Questions like “Where do I park?” or “How do I apply for financial aid?” are answered instantly. This is the reality that Cadence helps create. By providing immediate, accurate answers, Cadence improves the student experience and helps your institution stay competitive in a saturated market.

The Evolution of Communication in Higher Education

In the not-so-distant past, communication in higher education was far from where it stands today. Back then, information was primarily disseminated through printed-and-mailed viewbooks, and the most significant college choice influencers were parents and high school counselors.

Fast forward to today, and the landscape of communication has shifted dramatically. The evolution of chat, driven by advancements in AI, has revolutionized how information is communicated to students. These technologies are now changing the communication landscape faster than we’ve seen in the last five or six years, and this change is only set to accelerate in the future.

Chat: A Game Changer for the Student Experience

Chatbot on-website benefits go beyond speedy information delivery. As you likely already know, the first impression is the most important one, and this is especially true in higher education. Prospective students often form their first impression of your institution when they visit your website. Their experience on your site sets the stage for what they can expect from your institution. Ultimately, a seamless, user-friendly experience can significantly impact their decision to choose your institution over others.

With the ever-growing popularity of chatbots, institutions that implement these fast and reactive solutions on their sites have an edge in engaging with potential students and are more likely to capture their interest. Additionally, chatbots offer the advantage of personalizing the user’s experience, creating a more engaging and interactive website that speaks directly to their needs.

Yet many institutions are still not maximizing the potential of chat functions, resulting in missed opportunities for student engagement and recruitment. Fortunately, you can stay one step ahead of your peer institutions and inspire greater interest among prospective students by instituting a simple yet effective chat platform sooner rather than later.

Not All Chatbots Are the Same: How the Mongoose Solution Helps You Stand Out From the Rest

So what constitutes a comprehensive, fully functioning chat platform for higher education? The five key elements that your chatbot should be able to provide to any on-site visitors are speed, ease of access, connection, flexibility, and choice. When visitors can’t find answers on your website, they tend to leave quickly. The same goes for getting responses from your chatbot. That’s why it’s crucial to have a chatbot that provides fast, accurate, and easily accessible replies, ensuring people get the information they need promptly.

However, while these are all absolute musts for any chatbot, Mongoose offers a way to scale connections that no other provider can. Our secret? Playbooks, crafted by higher ed professionals, for higher ed professionals. Here’s everything you need to know about how our Playbooks boost the power of your website chatbot across the student lifecycle.

Our Student Discovery Playbook Transforms Anonymous Visitors Into Eager Applicants

Our Student Discovery Playbook revolutionizes the way you engage with website visitors and analyze valuable information from anonymous individuals. Through thoughtfully crafted conversation flows, we capture the attention of prospective students, resulting in more applicants and increased net tuition revenue. This Playbook provides instant, automated answers to common questions, boosts application conversions, uncovers enrollment blockers, and ensures you never miss connecting with prospective students. It’s the key to transforming anonymous visitors into enthusiastic applicants and unlocking the true potential of your institution.

Our App Completion & Yield Playbook Helps Applicants Become Fully Enrolled

Our App Completion & Yield Playbook streamlines the enrollment process, guiding prospective students toward becoming fully enrolled. It accelerates progress, answers common questions, boosts application completion, simplifies the enrollment process, and even mitigates summer melt. When used alongside the Student Discovery Playbook, it maximizes enrollment success, ensuring a smooth transition from applicants to fully enrolled students.

Our Affordability & Financial Support Playbook Removes Roadblocks to Education

The Affordability & Financial Support Playbook eliminates barriers to higher education by providing conversation flows that assist students and parents in completing financial aid applications, understanding complex jargon, comparing offers, and securing resources. It simplifies the numerous financial processes, promotes financial literacy, and offers personalized support, ensuring access to education and maximizing financial opportunities.

Our Student Retention Playbook Ensures Continued Academic Success

The Student Retention Playbook helps prioritize academic success by providing conversation flows that simplify the process of answering academic questions, streamlining outreach, and ensuring students have access to all the tools they need. It also reduces repetitive steps, directs students to relevant departments, and empowers them to utilize existing resources effectively. With this Playbook, we help you establish a seamless academic experience and maximize student retention.

Our Student Engagement Playbook Creates a Positive Student Experience

Our Student Engagement Playbook enhances the student experience by providing conversation flows that promote involvement in campus activities, facilitate the discovery of programs and events, foster a sense of connection to the campus community, and assist students in navigating complex higher education processes. This Playbook helps you empower students to find activities aligned with their interests, discover hidden opportunities, feel connected to their campus, and navigate administrative procedures seamlessly.

Alumni & Development Playbook: Identify Donors and Raise More Funds

Our Alumni & Development Playbook is the ultimate resource for identifying donors and raising more funds. With a focus on Alumni Engagement, Fundraising, Advancement, and University Relations, this Playbook provides conversation flows that streamline the overall after-graduation process. It helps you gain valuable insights into visitor identities, simplifies giving at all donor journey stages, increases event attendance, improves data accuracy, saves staff time with instant answers to FAQs, and enhances staff well-being by equipping them with efficient tools. With the Alumni & Development Playbook, you can optimize your fundraising efforts and achieve exceptional results.

Don’t Delay. Tap Into the Power of Chat (and Playbooks!) Today.

The key to a successful chat function is not just to add a bot to your site and leave it at that. Instead, it requires consistent evaluation, feedback, and adjustments to ensure the chatbot experience is continuously improving. This is where implementation specialists, like our team at Mongoose, can prove invaluable. We can guide you through the process, helping you optimize engagement and user experience. Ultimately, the goal is to create an experience that fosters a sense of belonging from the first interaction a prospective student has with your institution.

Schedule time with the Mongoose team to see how a comprehensive engagement platform can transform your institution’s communication and engagement. We’ll show you how having the right chat tools in your arsenal will make your institution more connected.