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Reflections of Q1 2022: The Routines, Strategies, and Marketing Hacks That Worked — And Those That Didn’t
Enrollify - Fanatical Fridays - 52
[00:00:00] Zach Busekrus: Video, you know, you need it, you know, it's all but expected from gen Z at this point, but you've got no time and little budget. And your marketing department is two months late on those new program brochures. They promised. So [00:00:15] asking them to help with a video for get it. But what have been, you could be as simple as sending an email to a perspective.
[00:00:23] Zach Busekrus: Meet good kind. A video engagement platform designed to make each one of your prospects feel like they're getting the extra [00:00:30] special treatment as an enrollment manager, you're competing for attention and in a sea full of static, boring HTML emails from other schools. A personal video is how you stand out and drive action with good GYN.
[00:00:43] Zach Busekrus: You can bring your university [00:00:45] faculty and students to life by designing and engaging hyper personalized and video first communications journey. Increase applications increase, yield, and decrease melt with the power of good kind visit. We are good [00:01:00] kind.com forward slash to book a demo and see just how powerful video marketing can be.
[00:01:06] Zach Busekrus: Show your face show you care. See the difference connection firstname.lastname@example.org forward slash enrollify [00:01:15]
[00:01:16] Mickey Baines: when I was still. Working directly in higher ed and having, you know, having that responsibility for, for our marketing campaigns. And I knew we were doing lots of testimonials. I kept a running list, a [00:01:30] roster of people to use when the time was right to use it.
[00:01:33] Mickey Baines: When, when I found someone's story, when they were applying to enroll, who was this person? How do they fit in the mix? What's their major? What topic is their story? I just had a [00:01:45] spreadsheet list and I might have 10 to 15 names on at any given time. So when we're ready to do the next, we had six testimonials running at any given time and I would run them for about.
[00:01:54] Mickey Baines: And once one of them hit their year coming up, I'm ready to replace it with a new one. So we might be doing two or three new ones every [00:02:00] year to keep that rotation. Cause you got to keep it fresh.
[00:02:03] Zach Busekrus: Welcome to fanatical Fridays, a weekly podcast where I sit down with Mickey Bains, a principal at Kennedy and company, which is a higher education consulting firm to discuss the traits, the strategies and the tactics that [00:02:15] separate the best enrollment management teams from the rest of.
[00:02:18] Zach Busekrus: I'm Zach boozy, Cruz founder here at enrollment. Enjoy the show.[00:02:30]
[00:02:34] Zach Busekrus: so we, uh, we found the record button.
[00:02:39] Mickey Baines: Yep. I see the status. We're recording. You know, just a little click here, a little click there. You need some [00:02:45] technical support. That's what I'm here for. Um, Vicky,
[00:02:47] Zach Busekrus: what would I do without you?
[00:02:49] Mickey Baines: Um, you, you will get a brief survey, uh, after we wrapped this call, um, to provide some feedback on how well I performed in providing you service today, I would greatly appreciate your honesty.[00:03:00]
[00:03:00] Zach Busekrus: Yes, 10 star ratings all around. Well, folks, it turns out, um, in order to record a podcast, you should be, you should be logged in. If in fact you are the host of that podcast. And if you're not logged in, you might not see a [00:03:15] record button. So pro tip pro tip, if you are the host of a podcast, be sure you are logged into your podcast, recording software.
[00:03:23] Zach Busekrus: If you want to see that magical red record.
[00:03:28] Mickey Baines: Or invite Mickey to be a [00:03:30] guest who can walk you through that process. If you get stuck.
[00:03:36] Zach Busekrus: Oh gosh, what day is it? It's a, it's a Wednesday. You know, it feels like a, it feels like a Monday. It feels like a, I don't know what, I don't know what day it feels like to be honest.[00:03:45]
[00:03:45] Mickey Baines: Cause it's the middle of the week. Yeah. Yeah. You're forgetting Zach Monday is the best day of the week. I agree, actually. Monday's my favorite day. Can live every live everyday. Like it's a Monday, um, is what I say now I get a lot of [00:04:00] rolled eyes, so I don't see it publicly too often,
[00:04:03] Zach Busekrus: but yeah, you're coming in.
[00:04:05] Zach Busekrus: You're coming off that weekend. Rest you're coming off that weekend. Hi. Or, you know, opening your, your, your inbox for the first time and it's hopefully not too overwhelmed. [00:04:15] My, my favorite thing on a Monday morning is to go and just click, like. Control and highlight all like the newsletter spam that I got, but everyone sends email newsletters out between like seven and 9:00 AM on Mondays.
[00:04:26] Zach Busekrus: I just click delete and my inbox goes to like, you [00:04:30] know, zero unread messages or like two unread messages. It's, it's one of the most empowering feelings. So.
[00:04:36] Mickey Baines: Do you not use Google Gmail?
[00:04:39] Zach Busekrus: Well, we, we still use outlook where we're old school and that's an
[00:04:43] Mickey Baines: issue. So I minor, [00:04:45] minor all tabbed out. So I, you know, while they're there, they're not in my inbox, they're in another tab and I know they're not as important and I'll go through those first thing.
[00:04:55] Mickey Baines: 5:00 AM in the morning. I'm I'll, I'll look through the forum diabetes. And the [00:05:00] updates from all the technology vendors we work with and all that stuff. And then I go to the inbox, but you know, normally I do that also on Sunday. I get a lot of those form digests on Sunday morning. So I have those already worked out before [00:05:15] Monday gets in.
[00:05:15] Mickey Baines: But Monday, Monday is a fantastic day. I mean, you really get to set what it is you're looking to achieve for the week. Um, And it can be lofty or not, but you have control over that on Monday. You don't have [00:05:30]
[00:05:30] Zach Busekrus: optimistic. Yeah. The outlook is optimistic.
[00:05:34] Mickey Baines: Yes. Well, on Monday you have control or at least more control and maybe not complete, but you have more control on what you can get achieved in the week.
[00:05:43] Mickey Baines: Then you have on Thursday or Friday. [00:05:45] And so if you attack Monday, right. And set the right pace and the right goals or activities that you need to complete for the week, and you said that. Friday is a better day. If you don't get Monday, right. Friday's a stressful day. [00:06:00] That's when you're like, oh, I'll write it for the weekend all the time.
[00:06:02] Mickey Baines: You're always going to be like, oh, just can't wait for this day. Be over for the weekend. You have that sometimes. But if you have it all the time, then I'd suggest you look at what you're doing on Monday so that you don't end up Friday. That way,
[00:06:14] Zach Busekrus: [00:06:15] words of wisdom from. Time management, master himself, master, you know, you're really, really good.
[00:06:22] Zach Busekrus: You're really good.
[00:06:23] Mickey Baines: Yeah. Well, I, you know, the last three weeks I'm spending seven and a half hours a day in on [00:06:30] calls and zoom and stuff. And it's it's, it's, that's taxing. I mean, that's like five days a week. That's
[00:06:38] Zach Busekrus: crazy.
[00:06:38] Mickey Baines: I live differently because a day is too much. Um, and so, um, I I'm, I see [00:06:45] it like this week is pretty good because it's down to like nine and a half to 11 and I see next week coming, and I know it's going to come down to about eight to 10 and eight is still a lot, but if I can get it.[00:07:00]
[00:07:00] Mickey Baines: I can not have to worry about what Friday will look like. So,
[00:07:05] Zach Busekrus: geez, man. Jeez. Well, I think that's actually a nice little segue into our topic for today. So while this doesn't [00:07:15] mean as much to. Many of our listeners who are higher ed practitioners in the, in the business world, right. We just wrapped Q1 Q1 of, of 2022, which ended on March 31st.
[00:07:29] Zach Busekrus: [00:07:30] And I was like at the end of the quarter to think through, all right, what worked well that quarter, what didn't work well that quarter, what behaviors or habits might, I want to change as I approach this, this next quarter. And even though our higher ed [00:07:45] friends and family. I don't necessarily think in, in these sorts of shanks of time, as, as religiously as we might make you.
[00:07:53] Zach Busekrus: I still think that, you know, it could be a good, helpful reminder for folks to kind of pause, think about sort of like [00:08:00] where we're at in the academic year and potentially reflect on all right. Over the last. What's what are a couple of things that I've learned that I want to keep doing? What are a couple of things that I've learned about myself or my behavior that I want to stop doing?
[00:08:14] Zach Busekrus: And then [00:08:15] maybe what are some, some new things that I want to, that I want to start doing? So I thought it would be fun to just do a little bit of a reflection and then a little bit of like brainstorming on just personally and professionally Mickey, like how we want to approach the [00:08:30] next, the next three months.
[00:08:31] Zach Busekrus: So first and foremost, Is there, is there anything that you've learned about yourself, about marketing, about technology, about consulting, about higher ed, whatever it is in this, the first [00:08:45] quarter of this year that you really hope to, to replicate or, or keep doing in, in this next quarter? And if so, what is that?
[00:08:56] Mickey Baines: Um, I wouldn't say there's something [00:09:00] new. Uh, so the, the, probably the most overused word that I use with our team over the past six months, maybe four months, five months, um, is evolution. And, you know, our [00:09:15] company, our, at least our technology services practice where we're in a transition phase of this really small team to this next level.
[00:09:24] Mickey Baines: Team, whatever that is in terms of size and how you manage things. There's there's. And I, and I talked with schools when they're [00:09:30] launching new programs and as they're building up processes a lot is you think about how you're going to do this work. You're not, you know, if you're starting with zero and your goal for the first round of students is, is 500.
[00:09:40] Mickey Baines: You're not building it for 3000. At that 3000 students, you're building it for that 500, [00:09:45] knowing that there's a point in time when you're at 500. Maybe it's when you get to 800, those processes don't work anymore and you have to shift for a thousand and build for that. And, and that's, that's where we, where we are.
[00:09:58] Mickey Baines: Um, that impacts [00:10:00] multiple things for us. It impacts how we staff, it impacts our structure in the roles that we have. It impacts our methodology and impacts. Goals, um, financial goals. And so we're in that [00:10:15] shift and we're making a step we're crossing, you know, a threshold of sorts. So, so evolution is a term.
[00:10:22] Mickey Baines: Uh, and so it's not necessarily, did you learn this or that? It's how do we, where are we in that phase? And I think about this, [00:10:30] I don't say daily, I think about. But most days of the week, there's something we'll cross like, okay, are we accounting for this? Are we thinking about this? Um, and, and so this year, what we would, I did a little differently this year for us, that I haven't done [00:10:45] before is as there are three goals and metrics that we have in place to monitor our progression, um, in any business, one of them is going to be sales, right?
[00:10:57] Mickey Baines: We're looking at sales. But I'm also looking [00:11:00] at revenue and those are two different things we will sell during the year. And we will collect revenue during the year. And those don't always align the way you think, because you might sell a project that's supposed to start in February. It doesn't start until April instead.
[00:11:14] Mickey Baines: [00:11:15] And there's something else comes up, enrollment cycles given the way, and it slows down and doesn't progress at the same rate. So if it's where it was to have started in February and ends in October, maybe it starts in April. Doesn't interfere. And in that scenario, some of that revenue that you collect doesn't come until next fiscal [00:11:30] year.
[00:11:30] Mickey Baines: So if I have a quota, not a quarter, we don't have quarters. If I have a goal of sales, you can't associate and assume that every one of those dollars turns into revenue in that same day share. And we know that some projects carry over and we account for that, but, [00:11:45] but others, uninsured or unanticipated, you know, another good example last year.
[00:11:50] Mickey Baines: We had, um, a client sign on for a project midsize project, um, to help them build out technology [00:12:00] for a new program that they had launched or in the process of launching a change in leadership at the presidential level. Um, and they Kubosh that entire effort, that new program that we're launching in Kubosh that, so we [00:12:15] did not, you know, sweet signed sales, we got zero revenue and that starts to throw it off.
[00:12:20] Mickey Baines: Um, and we didn't always, we knew that that could happen, but we didn't set a goal for revenue to say, okay, we, you know, this helps us think through those things. So that the [00:12:30] goal in that sense was more about what we monitor. And so this year we, we have, we're breaking that apart and we're kind of monitoring.
[00:12:37] Mickey Baines: The revenue more because as you get larger there, when you're small cashflow matters, you know, if a project slows down with a [00:12:45] group of three people and you may not get cash and you know, you gotta worry about it's a little different in that the dollars you need to generate every month or every quarter or more significant because you've got a larger.
[00:12:56] Mickey Baines: So we're looking at, and then the third thing, and if something is, [00:13:00] is generally on my mind, but not something we're looking at as specifically as is what is our capacity for our staff and how much work we can take on and what is too little and what is too much for them. And it's not looking at how much each person works is just helping [00:13:15] us understand.
[00:13:16] Mickey Baines: You know, if I look at. Our teams hours for a period of time. And they're beyond a specific capacity level. And I know that coming up in the next three weeks. So, you know, we had three weeks were above 95% and I know we're going to be that way for [00:13:30] another three weeks. It might be time to hire so that we're thinking clearly.
[00:13:33] Mickey Baines: And we're not always over-reactive in the hiring that we're waiting too late to make hires. And you've got too much. We've been very fortunate and I'm a superstitious person a [00:13:45] little bit. So I'm knocking on wood here that we've not had turnover through the great resignation period that other people have had.
[00:13:53] Mickey Baines: And so. Everybody's still with us and including the people yet. So, but, you know, I want, you [00:14:00] know, if we overtax people and don't pay attention to that, then it could turn into one of those scenarios. Um, and so, you know, I want to be sure that we're monitoring that I'm paying attention to it. Um, and as you, you know, as we grow at this point, the growth [00:14:15] pace.
[00:14:16] Mickey Baines: Is going to be greater than last year. But last year we, we, we grew a little bit, not as much as the previous year. So, so when you look at the growth over time to percentage, we back to the normal percentage of growth, but, you know, percentage of growth at half a million dollars, you know, if it's [00:14:30] 30% growth that half a million versus a million that's due much more significant.
[00:14:33] Mickey Baines: So, um, you know, we're, we're growing it at the same pace, but that. Larger amounts of growth, more projects, more clients, more revenue, more staff. And we just have to monitor [00:14:45] that, that staffing, uh, more closely, um, you know, it's easy to supervise a team of five, you know, a team of 20 is you, you have to adjust for that.
[00:14:54] Mickey Baines: And, um, this is really long-winded. So I apologize, but you, you opened the doors back. No, I love it. [00:15:00] And so the other thing we think about a growth as, as, as we grow the number of clients, number of projects, uh, and we have that team. 20 people, you know, that organizationally requires a different limit of shift.
[00:15:12] Mickey Baines: And what are the roles? You know, what you needed [00:15:15] someone to do initially is not necessarily what we need, that position, not necessarily person, but that position to do today. So how do we modify and grow and evolve the positions and ensure that the people in those positions [00:15:30] are happy about that can do the work that they love to do.
[00:15:33] Mickey Baines: How do we build the position and the people and it should, that everything's aligned. Um, And that's important when you've got a good team, you might need to evolve a position. That's not right for the person in [00:15:45] that position. So how do you, if that's a person that's doing really good work, and we're fortunate that we have that, how do I then do to accommodate that person is sure that they can continue to grow and evolve with you.
[00:15:56] Mickey Baines: That doesn't mean that they will always want to do it, but at least we're trying to [00:16:00] create that opportunity. And that's really, for me, that's really important. And so that's, you know, how do we have all that? So, Yeah, all that administrative thing is going on in the background right now for us. And, um, this is, you know, [00:16:15] I love what I do.
[00:16:16] Mickey Baines: B anybody that worked with me knows that I really love it. And this is a different part of the work that I love equally as much as everything else. So, um, what's going on this year evolution and just seeing [00:16:30] us progress. It's it's for me, some of the most fulfilling bit of work that we do, I always say I've progressed in my career.
[00:16:36] Mickey Baines: By doing what I love and helping in supporting students. And every move I've made has kept me in that realm. It's [00:16:45] just taking me one step further removed from direct contact the student and, and what I'm doing right now as we grow our team is in a sense still a part of that, because I don't get to spend 20 to 30 hours a week directly with clients.
[00:16:59] Mickey Baines: Eight to [00:17:00] 12 hours a week directly with class now. And so those are the projects I'm working with a team that's working with the project team. That's working with the client, that's where, you know, it's, but it's still at the end of the day, what type of experience we trying to create for students? How are we helping institutions enroll the right [00:17:15] students, more of the right students, that work is still occurring and it's so I get that fulfillment and I get to do it in a slightly different way, which is.
[00:17:25] Zach Busekrus: Well, you guys certainly have a lot going on. You certainly have a lot on your mind, [00:17:30] which is, which is great. You always do Mickey, which is one of the reasons I love talking to you. I learned, uh, I always, I always, I always learn a lot from just your Mickey's random musings. Um, and, uh, I, I'm gonna take a little bit of a different approach [00:17:45] to answering this question and just be a little bit more, uh, just something I, I learned this this past quarter.
[00:17:53] Zach Busekrus: Was what it takes to do video really well. [00:18:00] And the way I've learned that is we're working on this, um, master course with Terry Flannery on how to market a university. And I've spent most of the last quarter kind of on the road, actually [00:18:15] gathering content for, for this course. And. You know, I I've dabbled in directing video projects for institutions before, but it's, it's never been, it's always been like, Hey, [00:18:30] we're launching a marketing campaign.
[00:18:32] Zach Busekrus: And video might be like, you know, the third or fourth or fifth bullet point associated with that campaign. So it's, it's, it's there. It's important, but it's not, it's not the central component of the campaign. Right. [00:18:45] And. In the past, over the past couple of years, video equals like animated film, like animated video short, if you will, because of the pandemic.
[00:18:56] Zach Busekrus: So now that, um, travel is opened and, and [00:19:00] people are more receptive to having you on campus and whatnot, as we've been producing this, this master course, um, I feel like my eyes have just been opened very wide to the reality that. Video is incredibly powerful, [00:19:15] incredibly important and freaking hard to do well.
[00:19:20] Zach Busekrus: Like it is, it is just labor intensive beyond just the technical component of like what it takes to nail a shoot. [00:19:30] The, the artists. Involved in like trying to figure out what story you want to tell and how to tell that story is, is just as if not, if not even more challenging, but what I've also learned in this [00:19:45] past quarter is that if you can do that well, like you can, you can create an experience and a reaction that no blog post or no ebook or [00:20:00] no other piece.
[00:20:02] Zach Busekrus: What I'll just call flat content CA can inspire if you can nail this well, it, it pays dividends and, and then some, um, and so [00:20:15] anyways, I guess that's a long way of just saying that I've grown in dramatic appreciation for how to do video well, but then also have become quite sober to the reality of. [00:20:30] Why why it is why it does require the investment that it requires.
[00:20:34] Zach Busekrus: If that makes sense.
[00:20:36] Mickey Baines: Uh, I, I love video, um, in technology, you know, when we're implementing CRM, [00:20:45] that that involves changing in process. And you know, a lot of times we encounter, oh, we're going to do all this. And these, all these things will be automated. Now that, that eliminate. 10 hours are 20 hours of my [00:21:00] week, every week.
[00:21:00] Mickey Baines: Oh, what am I going to going to do with that time? And it's like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. It's not going to give you 23 hours of work. It's going to create 15 to 25 hours of new work, smarter shifts. And [00:21:15] I'll segue this back to what you're saying. When we look at marketing and you look at digital communication, not video, email estimates, there's a lot of time that has to go into content creation.
[00:21:27] Mickey Baines: Writing that's that's a time consuming thing. Oh, [00:21:30] dreadful, dreadful time video. You're thinking a lot. I'm drawn all that content, especially if it's unscripted, like we can get those testimonies. No, no, no, no. It's not saving all that time. The time is invested in different things. [00:21:45] Yeah. Time is equally as, as taxing, equally as dreadful.
[00:21:48] Mickey Baines: If you don't like that type of work. And I always find with video it's you want that story? You've got. That story, a lot of [00:22:00] things have to come to fruition perfectly like you, you've got to know the tone you want. You got to know the type of story that you're looking for. You got to find the person, not just the person who has the story, but the person who can tell the [00:22:15] story in a way that connects with.
[00:22:18] Mickey Baines: Not everybody is naturally gifted and connecting with camera. And if you try to make that a performance or force that it comes across as an authentic, awkward, and non-effective interfere. Yeah. Yeah. And I, [00:22:30] you know, there's so many people like you, you can't cut a corner like that in video now. Um, and it's, and it's can be time consuming, you know, and I, I remember vividly and I loved doing this by the way.
[00:22:43] Mickey Baines: I loved it when I [00:22:45] was still. Working directly in higher ed and having, you know, having that responsibility for, for our marketing campaigns and a new eye, we were doing lots of testimonials and get it. I kept a running list, a roster of people to use when the time [00:23:00] was right to use it. When, when I found someone's story, when they were applying to enroll, you know, Who is this person?
[00:23:08] Mickey Baines: How do they fit in the mix? What's their major? What topic is their story? I just had a spreadsheet list and I [00:23:15] might have 10 to 15 names on our, any given time. So when we're ready to do the next, we had six testimonials running at any given time and I would run them for about a year. And once one of them hit their year coming up, I'm ready to replace it with a new one.
[00:23:27] Mickey Baines: So we might be doing two or three new ones every year to [00:23:30] keep that rotation. Yeah. Cause you gotta keep it fresh. Um, but to keep that running roster. Someone had to do it. And I, you know, I didn't get to meet every student. We had 1500 students, I meet 10 to 20% of them. So how do [00:23:45] I then other funding, I've got to create ways for our staff in our, to have those conversations, to let people tell the stories of the students.
[00:23:51] Mickey Baines: Um, I read every applicants, applicants, their essays, so I can understand, like we had to craft that. And so we had a find that. [00:24:00] Uh, way to do it. I knew I do a version of that today. I was just telling some, our team this, as we're hiring, I have a roster of potential candidates, not of people that have applied, but if people that I've come across that I've met, that I found on LinkedIn, that fit criteria that I think [00:24:15] could potentially be a fit so that when that Fitz bot opens up, we can help recruit them.
[00:24:20] Mickey Baines: And I will get what our, what we want is in our hiring. It's the same thing. When I want to do a video. What is, what type of background, what, how do they add to our, our [00:24:30] diverse mix of people and personalities that make a complete thought provoking client, supporting team, all these, just a whole mix of things.
[00:24:41] Mickey Baines: Um, and you know, we look at some, someone at a particular level that are [00:24:45] reaching out to everybody on that level, say, Hey, we've got this, you know, I've found you X, Y, Z, or we spoken doing this. I just want you to know we've got this position, look at it. If you think there's any chance you might be interested, let's just talk and see if there's an opportunity.
[00:24:58] Mickey Baines: And, but in the same thing I did with the marketing, but [00:25:00] it's, you know, you've got to have that. Sorry, I've gone on a big segue. No, no, I like it.
[00:25:05] Zach Busekrus: I like it. I love the way your brain works. Um, what do you think about
[00:25:08] Mickey Baines: the video and how hard that is? That's just one of the factors. The casting exists is be very time-consuming.
[00:25:14] Mickey Baines: Yeah, [00:25:15] but it was easier. And when, you know, you're going to be doing this every year to keep that roster, rather than going back and spending the hours, I just found them. And that just made it easier.
[00:25:26] Zach Busekrus: Well, and, and what I think is, is super interesting. It's like, yes, it's, [00:25:30] it's a great, you're in a great situation.
[00:25:32] Zach Busekrus: If like you're, uh, Enrollment manager who has that roster and you know, like you've got great relationships with your students. You, you understand at least to some degree, their story it's in, it's incredibly [00:25:45] different when you have. Like one of the things I've learned, right? It's like, I've got an hour with this VP of marketing or this VP of enrollment or a college president.
[00:25:56] Zach Busekrus: I have one hour, I have never met these people. Right. We've [00:26:00] corresponded via LinkedIn or email or whatever. We're sitting down for this interview and it's my job. Right. I, I have to get to know. And understand kind of who they are, how they think. And I can do a little bit of research, but very quickly, like I can't, I [00:26:15] can't spend all my time just asking level one questions, right?
[00:26:19] Zach Busekrus: No one cares about level. One questions about, Hey Mickey, tell me about yourself. Like, what do you do? What's your role? Level one, right? You, you have to somehow be able to [00:26:30] go from some pleasantry to, to meet, to, to what I would call like level three questions very, very quickly. There's just, there's just not a lot of time.
[00:26:42] Zach Busekrus: And so, as you, as you, as you've [00:26:45] talked about like casting it and storytelling, one of the things that I've realized is, again, if you can do this, if you can do this well, Immensely powerful, immensely, powerful. However, it is, it [00:27:00] is hard to do well. So, you know, that's, that's kind of one of my big learnings from, from this quarter, I would say in terms of like a bad behavior, um, that I feel like I fell into in, in Q1 that I want to break in in Q2 is [00:27:15] I, I said yes to way too many.
[00:27:22] Zach Busekrus: What I'll call like new initiatives in, in Q1 meeting opportunity presents itself. It's something that I haven't done [00:27:30] before. And it's, it was like, uh, oh, this could be amazing. Yes. Let's, let's hop on this. Like, let's, let's take advantage of this opportunity. And I think that in Q2, It's, it's not necessarily about being more selective about what I [00:27:45] say yes to, but the, the number of new things like, you know, capital N new never done before things that I say yes to, I think realistically I've learned that I can only say yes to a [00:28:00] handful of new things in any, you know, quarter, otherwise.
[00:28:06] Zach Busekrus: I'm I'm drowning in all the newness and I'm, I missed the routine. I miss, I miss the tried and true. I missed, I missed the known it's too much time spent in, in [00:28:15] sort of the, the unknown. So my challenge for myself this quarter is to not take on too many new things and really just double down on like the things that I've already sort of set into motion.
[00:28:26] Zach Busekrus: What about you? Is there, is there any sort of like behavior that you're hoping to [00:28:30] correct and, or, and, or change in this next?
[00:28:34] Mickey Baines: Um, I wanna S I want to talk about what you were talking about first. Yeah. Yeah. Um, I don't know where I feel like I had this [00:28:45] conversation with someone yesterday, and I don't think I actually had the conversation with anyone other than in my mind, um, with myself.
[00:28:51] Mickey Baines: And it was queued from a conversation into a podcast. I was listening to, um, Find this hard to believe, but it was a podcast with Bernie brown. Um, [00:29:00] shocking,
[00:29:01] Zach Busekrus: shocking. Yeah. Um,
[00:29:05] Mickey Baines: um, I think it's important. Uh, and I, I, I'm certain, I've said this multiple times on this podcast, but. At the high level, [00:29:15] the strategies and priorities are to me.
[00:29:16] Mickey Baines: If, if those aren't documented, I wonder if our three top goals that we have in there. Um, and the, and if I have anything else that I really am focused on it, it's, um, it's ensuring that the methodology that we went to, uh, [00:29:30] apply last year in terms of tweaking, not completely changed, but tweaking how we help clients.
[00:29:35] Mickey Baines: Better adopt technology that we're continuing that evolution of how that improves and grows over time. Um, but when you have those priorities, because [00:29:45] new opportunities arise all the time and you're facing that right now, right. Here's something we've never thought of. Oh, that would be great. How does that compare with the priorities that you have and how does that fit in so that you're always having the opportunity to assess these ideas.[00:30:00]
[00:30:00] Mickey Baines: I love this idea is fantastic because sometimes you get so excited that you overlook, then it really doesn't fit. And if you commit the time that will be needed to make that work, you will miss out on hitting some other goal or priority [00:30:15] that you have. And that's not to say you don't do it, but you need to have that conversation and acknowledge.
[00:30:21] Mickey Baines: Yes, we're going to do this anyway. We're going to sacrifice this because this is too new, to innovative, to good, with great opportunities for [00:30:30] results short or long-term or both that make it worthwhile so that you make that intention because it's not just you, that will be doing those things. Other people would get involved and you'll be changing their expectations, their thoughts, their plans, and you need that by.[00:30:45]
[00:30:45] Mickey Baines: And it's not just, oh, Zach's got another idea. We got to go do that now. Like it's, it's you want everyone on the same page and that's why you have those goals in place so that when someone comes to questioning, whether that's someone on your team, someone above you [00:31:00] that says, Hey, why aren't you doing this?
[00:31:03] Mickey Baines: These numbers are off now. You're right. These numbers are off. But these numbers you're going to see are going to offset that. And this is why. Or you're right. We have to pause [00:31:15] this. We've got to get back to this. That is really, I think important. And for me, I know that's critical. I, you know, I, you know, my Myers Briggs types, I'm, I'm an E NFP P and I don't know if I've said this on a podcast, but if are [00:31:30] described this personality with one thing and people want to walk away with understanding ene FPS, it's this, you will.
[00:31:36] Mickey Baines: Oh, there's a bird, huh?
[00:31:44] Zach Busekrus: Oh. Oh, [00:31:45] wow. Yeah. Wow. That's amazing. You totally got me there. I was like, yeah, Nikki, Nikki, we've heard it sharping. Like it's just realizing that there's a fricking bird in your window.
[00:31:58] Mickey Baines: That's my personality. [00:32:00] We lose. That's what keeps me grounded the say, okay, are we going to do this or not? And I used, and I still, sometimes I, well, not sometimes I still today, but I've always when I had a whiteboard in my office that I'm pointing this direction.
[00:32:13] Mickey Baines: Cause that's where my board is [00:32:15] having ideas so that I don't forget them so that when the time is right, I can prioritize them. There might be a hundred at a time. He used to have, when I was still in higher, I had a board with tons of ideas on, we might act on 10% of them. [00:32:30] Because the others, while decent ideas were not important enough, did not get the results granting of his results that we could truly build out a plan and implement.
[00:32:42] Mickey Baines: To get those results that we wanted from them, [00:32:45] um, in a way, and, and some of them, the results don't have to be the biggest, but they have some type of impact. They have some other connection and you, you gotta be a weatherman. And it wasn't just for me to remember it's for the team. And it w when I had team meetings, I would bring them and we'd review them.
[00:32:58] Mickey Baines: We would talk about them [00:33:00] to help prioritize things. That's really, I think, important, um, and for growth, so that. My feedback on that. My thoughts in terms of what I've learned, like the lessons learned, um, [00:33:15]
[00:33:15] Zach Busekrus: or what about, what about a behavior that you might want to change or like a, like, uh, as you, as you think about the next quarter, is there anything that you want to stop doing that you've been doing?
[00:33:25] Mickey Baines: Oh gosh, I stopped doing so I made this comment, um, to, to [00:33:30] some of my colleagues in the last week. Um, we're still at a size. And operating in a way that we won't know that we're in a lull until we're already in it. [00:33:45] And I don't want to lose sight of thinking about where we are, that if I see that we're not going to be signing and starting any new significant projects for three weeks, that's not necessarily a bad thing, but [00:34:00] that I'm accounting for that.
[00:34:03] Mickey Baines: With what's coming up for accounting for, with those three goals in mind capacity for this tech, for the staff, for sales for the year in [00:34:15] revenue collected for the, for those three things that we, that, that, so what am I, what am I stopping doing? I don't know that it's forced me to stop doing it's it's. I have to remember that.
[00:34:26] Mickey Baines: I need to observe and monitor that. [00:34:30] So you've got someone who's oh, we've got, we've got this big project. We're definitely to do this with you, but we can't start for another six weeks. Not a big deal. If you can't start for six weeks, what does that do to my staff and capacity? What does that do to sales and revenue?
[00:34:44] Mickey Baines: [00:34:45] And how do you plan an offset for that? Doesn't mean I've got to go run and signed deals. I just have to think about that beyond those six weeks at that six week points. And beyond that, that has to be accounted for, um, In the past, I would not [00:35:00] have always had that deliberate thought. Hm Hmm. So it's not stopping doing it's just room that you have to do it now.
[00:35:08] Zach Busekrus: So, yeah. And I think, I think a good way of even thinking about this and translating it to our listeners is even just thinking about [00:35:15] sort of the ebbs and flows of when prospective students need questions, answered who and like who needs to be contacted in any given day or week. And I think that. There's obviously going to be heavier seasons where you've got a huge influx [00:35:30] of inquiries and questions and students that prospective students that need responses.
[00:35:36] Zach Busekrus: And then you've got other seasons where it's a little bit of a, you know, a slower trickle. So how, how are, how are, you know, your staff using [00:35:45] their time when it's high season and when it's low season and how are you ensuring that you're coupling the other strategic priorities of your enrollment management shop?
[00:35:55] Zach Busekrus: You aren't required to spend eight hours on the phone a day. Right. Um, and [00:36:00] I think that that's that nailing that it is really what separates the best enrollment management teams from the rest of the pack.
[00:36:06] Mickey Baines: Yep. Is like what you were just talking about. Exactly. That tactical bit of it to say, okay, it's March.
[00:36:14] Mickey Baines: We're [00:36:15] going to have orientational earlier this year for some of our new students, we're going to start having them in March and April. And that's going to take up a lot of the admissions time. Okay. That's fine, but don't forget that high school graduation is in somewhere between mid may and mid [00:36:30] June the last month.
[00:36:32] Mickey Baines: You're not going to lose any bit of ability to connect and engage with them. One-on-one if you do visits and I think a lot of two year institutions. Or institutions who draw very locally to them, then they're still doing those types of visits. And so [00:36:45] what else, if you're going to use your time when you might normally be doing visits in March, working on orientation stuff, how do you make up for that?
[00:36:53] Mickey Baines: Very tactical, but you have to do that. I think another example might be in our enrollment plan. We need to enroll [00:37:00] of 1,450 new students. This, this fall or fall of 2013. Let's give us time. Um, and as part of that makeup, we've got two new programs that we're gonna be rolling out. What happens when one of them says, oh, we're not gonna be a rollout and fall 23.
[00:37:14] Mickey Baines: We're going to have to [00:37:15] do spring 24, fall 24. Okay. Well, let's, let's work out our marketing publications and how we communicate with everybody about this program. And so, yeah. Yeah. Gotta worry about that. But you also didn't have to make up for the students that you had planned to enroll for fall 23 in that program.
[00:37:29] Mickey Baines: [00:37:30] Where else can you enroll? Students and other, not those same students, but that quantity of students in other programs, how do we adjust? Uh, and I think that I know people have those thoughts, but then what does that mean? As we trickle down to the, to the more strategic and tactical things that you [00:37:45] have to do from a lead generation and lead, nurture applicants, Scott, all those things that have to follow, uh, trickle their way down.
[00:37:53] Mickey Baines: How's that get accounted for. So we know now that, you know, Hey, you covered this program that was going to launch. You're [00:38:00] not going to be that probes on the launch. We're going to make this up. You over here, you covered these other programs. I need you to prepare to help generate not just 15 more students for them.
[00:38:10] Mickey Baines: I need 50 more students, which means I need 45 more applicants, which means I need 90 new [00:38:15] leads. That may not be something that was in their mindset. And if they don't think that going now on to spring recruit the juniors of high school season, if you're traditionally focused, that has to go a, got to have all that in place.
[00:38:28] Mickey Baines: And what are the [00:38:30] metrics? So what do we need to be looking at in these spring visits, these spring communication efforts? What should we see? What results do we see now to know that we're on or off track? Yeah, no, this is the quarters that you have. You know, you may not have your traditional [00:38:45] three-month quarters, but there are milestones that you have in your enrollment cycle that you need to see and monitor threshold for.
[00:38:52] Zach Busekrus: Couldn't agree. More. Couldn't agree more. All right. Final question, Nikki is what are you most excited about in this next quarter? Um, [00:39:00] again, we are. Entering warmer months. Hopefully we were just complaining before we hopped on how it's still like cold and rainy and wet in DC and Philly. And it's, you know, we're well into April already, but, um, or the next over the next three months here, what are you, what are [00:39:15] you most excited about with respect to the industry, with respect to projects that you might be working on, et cetera?
[00:39:23] Mickey Baines: Um, there, there are probably three projects we have proposals [00:39:30] out for right now. That I'm, I'm excited about excited in a few ways. One, I get a little nervous cause they're they're big. Yeah. Uh, and, [00:39:45] um, that requires a bit more of my time. Got the bigger the project, the more involved I will be to make sure that we we've got the right goals for the project, with the client.
About the Episode
The what's what...
On this week’s episode of Fanatical Fridays, Zach and Mickey reflect on the first three months of 2022 and answer the following questions:
- What’s one thing you learned about yourself, your team, and marketing strategy in general in Q1 that you plan to replicate in Q2?
- What’s a bad behavior you fell into in Q1 that you want to break in Q2?
- What is something you changed your mind about in Q1?
- What are you most excited about in Q2?
Fanatical Fridays is brought to you by Enrollify. Enrollify is where higher ed comes to learn new marketing skills, discover new software and services, network with the best minds and find their next gig.You can connect with Zach on LinkedIn or Twitter and Mickey on LinkedIn.
About the Podcast
Zach is the Founder of Enrollify. He thoroughly enjoys building new brands, developing and executing content marketing strategies, and hosting podcasts. When he's not working on Enrollify, he enjoys discussing life's quandaries over coffee (or a good bourbon) with friends, building Sponstayneous (his travel brand side hustle), trying out new HIIT workouts, and adventuring across the globe with his wife!
Mickey Baines leads the technology services practice at Kennedy & Company. Kennedy & Co assists colleges and universities in the selection, implementation, customization and integration of various CRM technologies, including Salesforce, TargetX, Slate and others. They lead projects of all sizes for public and private two and four-year institutions. Whether he's working hands-on in an enrollment strategy project, leading a CRM implementation or speaking at a conference, the goal is the same - to help higher ed professionals implement technologies, strategies & tactics that engage and enroll more students.
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On this weekly segment, Mickey Baines from Kennedy & Company and Zach Busekrus from Enrollify discuss the traits, strategies, and tactics that separate the best enrollment management teams from the rest of the pack.
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