We know. We know. And we’re sorry.

We know you expected your new CRM to solve all your problems. And help you drive more Inquiries. And Apps. And Yield.

But we know it’s not that simple. CRM’s are great tools, but like a Chef’s kitchen, they’re only as powerful as the team using it. (Think Microsoft Excel or Word – most of us only use a small fraction of the programs’ capabilities).

We empathize, but also ask you to reset your expectations. CRM’s are generally one-way communication tools and data repositories. They’re important business tools, but they are NOT something that will help you break out of the clutter. Why? Because every school has a CRM or SIS. And are all doing the same thing.

In all our focus groups with students around the country, not once have we heard a prospective student say, “I like the way they’re using their CRM to communicate with me.”

Most schools will “customize” their outbound CRM communication by inserting {{first name}} or {{major}} variables, and that’s about the extent of it. But teens are savvy. They know you’ve sent that same message to thousands of other kids and just changed the name. Do you feel special when you get messages like that? Neither do I.

Custom content experiences that the USER gets to select is where things are headed. And some schools are already there. Prospective students get to select the content they want to engage in, just like they do with every other content experience they engage in (Netflix, Newser, Social Media, etc…). You’ve got to meet them in their world and give them an experience that WOWs them. Is your CRM doing that?

It’s time to look beyond the CRM and reset your expectations. Unique engagement experiences are what it takes to break your school out of the clutter. We’re not saying CRMs aren’t useful. They are. But it takes a heck of a lot more creativity than what your CRM will do for you to move the enrollment needle.

We’re sorry.