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Podcasts The Enrollify Podcast Episode 144
Introducing The Pivot — A No BS Podcast for Enrollment Marketers
[00:00:00] Zach Busekrus: All righty. We're gonna play a game, guys. Okay. So first and foremost, get a pen, get a paper, pull out your notes, app on your phone, whatever it might be. Okay? Got it. Great. All right. What keywords does your website currently rank for? Take a couple seconds, right? 1, 2, 3. I gave you a few, not just a couple.
[00:00:22] What doesn't it rank for that you think it should rank for? Okay. 1, 2, 3, 4. Now, what are a few keyword opportunities that you could be winning on if you just simply tweaked some of your existing website? Copy. Got it. Okay. How'd you do? Ooh. Not so hot. Not sure what you can, what you're currently ranking for or not sure what you could be ranking for.
[00:00:45] Well, that's okay because our friends at DD Agency want to help you answer all of these questions. DD Agency is a higher ed Pacific marketing technology agency that's conducted countless SEO audits for colleges and universities across the country. In these [00:01:00] audits, they detail where you currently. What you could be ranking for, exactly how copy should be tweaked on a website, pages and so much more.
[00:01:08] If this sounds like something that you could benefit from, give the guys a ded agency a ping and be sure to mention that enroll I sent you to claim a 10% discount on any of their s e O offerings. So head on over to enroll fify.org/dda seo. That's DDA as in DD Agency seo. Or simply follow the link in the show notes below that will guarantee you get a 10% discount off of your audit.
[00:01:33] Alright, right, head on over to enroll fify.org/dd s e o or simply Google DD Agency. Find Didi Agency's website and be sure to mention that you heard about them through enroll I when you request your audit. All right, folks, back to the show.
[00:01:56] Tony Fraga: I once even chased down a marketing company that was doing something so bad [00:02:00] just to play his poy because he texted me without my permission. I was like, you are ruining marketing agencies across the world. I don't like most marketing. I
[00:02:09] Zach Busekrus: don't.
[00:02:36] And just like that we're live folks, how you guys doing today? Tony and Jamie? Doing great.
[00:02:43] Tony Fraga: Excited to be here. Finally, I feel like I waited years for this day
[00:02:47] Zach Busekrus: to come. .
[00:02:49] Jaime Gleason: You ever meet someone when they say fantastic, they really like, say, say fantastic. Like really elongate the fan. But I think I'm fantastic.
[00:02:57] Okay, so thanks for asking. How are you,
[00:02:59] Zach Busekrus: Zach? I'm doing [00:03:00] well, I'm doing well. I am excited to, to be here. Uh, as you guys both know, I have a, a newborn, so I am sort of like my brain is like all over the place right now, but I actually slept for like a solid four hour, like stretch last night, and it was like the latter half of the night from like, Three to seven.
[00:03:17] So I woke up and I was like, whoa, I feel like I could like run a marathon today. So , I'm doing, I'm doing excellent. Um, but I, uh, I'm excited to, it's all about the sleep cycles. All about the sleep cycles. Yeah. I'm learning. I'm learning. And also, I'm also learning that everyone has a different philosophy on sleep.
[00:03:33] So if, like you ask like too many people, You get like conflicting information and you're like, huh, that's interesting. I literally just spoke to somebody yesterday who said the complete opposite of what you just said. So, uh, yeah, we're figuring it out.
[00:03:48] Tony Fraga: welcome to having kids where Yeah. Right. You'll get an unlimited amount of opinions.
[00:03:53] You thought you had opinions before. Start having kids. You'll get even more opinions whether you want 'em
[00:03:57] Zach Busekrus: or not. You don't need to ask, right? The advice [00:04:00] will just come, .
[00:04:00] Tony Fraga: It'll just come. Your job is to sift through all that crap and decide what you're gonna listen to, what
[00:04:05] Zach Busekrus: you're. Yeah, I definitely have like, I dunno, started to adopt the polite way of basically like nodding and just go, yeah, interesting.
[00:04:14] And then like, as quickly as we'll try that possible Yeah. Changing the subject so that I don't get more of it, but, uh, yeah. Yeah. I, I have a lot to learn from, from you two who are both seasoned dads and in addition to being seasoned dads, you guys also. Run DEI agency. And Tony, you're the c e o there, uh, Jamie, your, your VP of strategy.
[00:04:31] And we're having this conversation today because DEI agency is launching a podcast on the Enroll five Podcast network. And this podcast is called The Pivot. So I'm super pumped for this podcast because I obviously know both of you really well and have gotten to learn from you both over, over the years.
[00:04:46] You both have taught, uh, you've given conferences, presentations, you've, you've run teams. You, you know, The higher ed industry, but specifically higher ed marketing and enrollment management in and out. So I'm just super pumped for [00:05:00] our listeners to get the opportunity to hear more regularly from, from both of you in the context of, of this new show.
[00:05:07] But I wanted to kick off the conversation by hearing a little bit about like why both of you have decided. In your very, very busy lives to carve out a smidge of time to record a, a biweekly podcast. So Jamie, why don't we start with you? Sure. What are you excited about with respect to the show? Why are you doing this podcast?
[00:05:25] And then we'll kick it over to Tony.
[00:05:27] Jaime Gleason: There's a multitude of reasons, Zach, but I think the, the interesting part about my life as a person mixed into my life as a professional and kind of where that trajectory goes is. You know, I think we're right on the brink right now of higher ed seeing a significant, there's a sea change, uh, you know, sea change afoot.
[00:05:45] And I feel like one of the things that I, that I love being a part of is this kind of ever-present challenge in the higher ed world. And I also, uh, I. , I've kind of coined myself as a farmer and a fixer, and I feel like there's [00:06:00] plenty of fixing to be done in higher ed if it's going to kind of make its way through this pivot.
[00:06:05] So I think one of the things that, you know, I'm most excited about relative to this podcast is being able to like, think through process, share thoughts and, and in a way that has. Practical and usable and like people can come and have a question and leave and have an answer, and have it be concrete.
[00:06:27] That's, I think, maybe my biggest answer for that question.
[00:06:30] Zach Busekrus: I love it. I love it. What about you, Tony? Why are, why are you excited about this podcast?
[00:06:34] Tony Fraga: Yeah. You know, Jane, that's a great point and I, I would even add onto that. That's been true, but you feel it more now today, faster. Like I would just add the word.
[00:06:43] People need it even quicker. Hmm. And I'm excited about this because I'm probably the most old school here, to be perfectly honest. Um, Jamie's an experienced podcaster. Zach, you're very experienced. I'm the newbie
[00:06:55] Zach Busekrus: to the table. You might be old school. I'm just old. You're just
[00:06:58] Tony Fraga: hold. I'm old school. Yeah. Well, I'll, [00:07:00] I'll, I'll, let's see how long we can ride that.
[00:07:02] Um, but I'm really excited about this because. Of all the craziness that just happened in the last couple years in the industry. Hmm. Like we, we love giving advice. We love sharing stuff. For years, Dee ay is all about, all about giving away the secret sauce. But I think the difference right now is like, So many schools and so many enrollment marketing professionals need stuff yesterday.
[00:07:28] Yeah, all the time. I mean, that's always been true a little bit now. It seems a lot true everywhere. Hmm. And everyone is so stretched. I'm really excited about. This vehicle of this podcast, just being able to give real practical things that people can, can use very quickly because people don't have time to wait for the conference to go hear the presentation.
[00:07:46] Mm-hmm. to take down the slide deck to then call the partner to then make up a strategic plan, then work it into next year's. No, no one has time for that anymore. Yeah, everybody wants it yesterday, so this is one media format that actually gets you really quick [00:08:00] stuff you can do right now. That's what I'm most
[00:08:02] Zach Busekrus: excited.
[00:08:03] Yeah, I, I love this and I got the opportunity to kind of work with you guys a little bit in term in terms of mapping out sort of the vision and, and the content strategy for, for the show. And one of the things that was just super apparent to me that was that heavy on both your all's hearts is, is this idea of how do we help people realize, like, okay, The reality that you might find yourself in at this particular moment is not necessarily the reality that you wanted to be in.
[00:08:23] Maybe your class, maybe numbers aren't looking so great, right? Mm-hmm. . And so how, how do you take sort of this present moment that you find yourself in, whether you're a marketing professional, enrollment management professional, or somewhere in between, and how do you sort of pivot? in light of like what data is saying in light of like what your reality is, is actually like, in a way that's meaningful, right?
[00:08:40] Like, how do you use the resources that you do have, however limited they might be in the best, most efficient, most productive ways possible. And both of you two, you, you, you both have, you really care about that. And I think that that's gonna come through in this show, which I, I'm pumped to listen to cuz I think more often than not, Represents most people's realities.
[00:08:59] Most people's [00:09:00] realities. You know, most people's strategic plans don't go exactly like they plan for them to go. Right? Yeah. Yeah. And I think more often than not, we need, we need more content, more thoughts, more advice on All right. . I said, I said this was going to happen. This is what actually happened.
[00:09:13] Here I am now. Now what do I do? Where do I go? Right? Yeah. You know, so I, I think you guys are gonna do a really good job of at unpacking all of that. I do wanna give the listeners a little bit of time to get to know you both better. And so I thought it'd be fun to just hear a little bit about your, your.
[00:09:26] Respective professional careers to date. Uh, talk a little bit about what led you to, to DD agency, your, your role there, um, but also a little bit about kind of your, your greater love for work for the industry. So, Jamie, let's, let's start with you. I'd love you to share a little bit about your, your past, what your resume has looked like, uh, and then we'll, and then we'll ping Tony.
[00:09:46] Jaime Gleason: Yeah, sure. Um, well, for anyone who you know, who's done the research and is listening to this podcast, probably you have a tab of LinkedIn Open, so I won't share the stuff that you see there. Um, but what you don't see there is, I think the bigger story, right? I think everyone, if [00:10:00] we zoom back to the person that's, that's doing the role, we see this bigger story.
[00:10:05] So the bigger story with me is that I'm a first generation college student who comes from very rural, very poor, upstate New York in higher. made a significant difference in my life. Obviously, I wouldn't be working in higher ed in this sphere if I wasn't involved in higher ed at some point as a student.
[00:10:22] And I think that the, the part about, uh, the, the passion behind what I do is the ability to like, help people kind of, kind of sort through these waters, right? Mm-hmm. , they're, these waters of higher ed are very complicated. . Um, you know, my, my tenure in higher ed, I've been in, in involved in higher ed for like 20 years, but I, but I think my, my role in higher ed is that's, that's very unique is that I started in res life, which is not unlike, you know, a lot of people started in res life.
[00:10:52] I have been in the admissions office, I've been in the alumni office, so I like to tell people like I have seen. Almost all elements [00:11:00] of the higher ed experience. Yeah. My wife is a faculty member, so I, I li you know, like we just, we, and are constantly involved, like in all levels of this, of this process.
[00:11:09] And I think the part that's very interesting about that relative to what we do, Is that all of that plays into like the technology you use, the, the messaging you have, like this, this whole idea that higher ed is kind of like this punier once and done experience is, is is not like the way we should be thinking about this like,
[00:11:29] You know, I, I love, love people who love like this, this talk of like, hey, well I'm a lifelong learner. Like we should be lifelong teachers. And yeah. The part about what we do at DEI agency that makes me so excited not only about this podcast, but also just almost like every day in the office, is that what we're really bringing to bear is like this element of like teaching people something new and, and, and it doesn't always have to be this like massive wholesale change.
[00:11:58] you know, you said it just a moment ago, [00:12:00] Zack is like, you know, you have to work with what you have and, and a lot of times institutions like they recognize that they have resources, but they don't know maybe how to switch those resources up or how to leverage certain parts of their, you know, parts of their curriculum even to like help their, their messaging.
[00:12:16] So like, yeah, all that we do, I feel like is a lot involved with like helping people to step back and gain that perspective on like, what are the available resources that you have and how can we. Leverage those to the absolute max in order to change your enrollment trajectory, change your storytelling potential, like all of these things.
[00:12:37] And I think that's the part that you probably, maybe you don't get the, that's the, the story between the words on my LinkedIn profile. .
[00:12:44] Zach Busekrus: Yeah. Yeah. So, so well said. And, um, I, one of the things I I love about you, Jamie, in, in getting to know you over the past couple years is, um, you're, you're, you're a really good storyteller.
[00:12:54] And I think that like, like what's super cool about marketing, right? Like marketing done well, [00:13:00] uh, looks like being able to help people understand, especially in the context of higher ed, like what is your institution's story and what and how does my personal. Fit into the context of the greater story that your institution is trying to, is trying to share.
[00:13:13] And I think one of the things I've always appreciated about you is you're really, really good at that. And so I, I look forward to lots of stories, lots of anecdotes on the pivot. Lots of like, oh, hey, you know, Tony, this insight that you just shared about SEO reminds me of this time reminds me of a conversation I was having with my son, Wade.
[00:13:29] Right? Like, yeah. I feel like you, you do a really good job of taking sort of like the professional and marrying it to the personal Sure. In a way that helps people better understand why, why the professional, why the tactic, or why the strategy is, is so important. So, I'm, I'm pumped, I'm pumped about that man.
[00:13:44] It's gonna, bes gonna be a lot of. . Yeah.
[00:13:46] Jaime Gleason: I mean,
[00:13:46] Zach Busekrus: I love telling a good story, so, . Alright. Tony, what about you? Like, you are the c e o of DD agency and, um, I, you've been there for, for several years, you've really sort of helped grow this agency and it's pivoted, uh, no [00:14:00] pun intended, in a number of different ways many times since you've been there.
[00:14:02] So why don't you tell us a little bit about your career trajectory and why, why you're doing what you do today?
[00:14:09] Tony Fraga: Yeah. You know, I'm gonna start with a confess. Because a lot of people in the industry know me as like a marketing strategist, a marketing consultant, really big in enrollment marketing. And you know, when I, if I'm honest, there's two confessions I would say.
[00:14:24] One, I didn't set out. To like get into higher ed marketing. That's not like it found me. I didn't say, man, I like marketing and I like higher ed. Man. Both those combined, it's like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Like that wasn't me. It found me accidentally because a client we were working with way back in the day, in the early turn of the century was like, Hey, we're going to this conference and you guys do this great marketing stuff and we can't.
[00:14:51] can you guys help us explain it? And I found my true love of, like, I love taking complex concepts and [00:15:00] teaching them and breaking them down and giving it away. Like I love doing. I enjoy it. It's like that's what I bring. So, and here's my second confession, and this is gonna sound really weird.
[00:15:10] Zach Busekrus: I actually don't like a lot of marketing.
[00:15:13] Hmm. I don't
[00:15:14] Tony Fraga: really like most marketing. It really bothers me. Literally, like this week I've been doing since the turn of the. . I am so ticked at all the freaking emails in my inbox that are coming outta like way more sales. I'm now reporting everyone's junk. If they say, Hey, you have to unsubscribe, I just reply back and write the word unsubscribe, like it makes me mad.
[00:15:33] I, I like, I once even chased down a marketing company that was doing something so bad just to play his ploy because he texted me without my permission. I was like, you are ruining marketing agencies across the world. . I don't like most marketing. I. And that's what I found at de like when we evolved and we really birthed even DD agency out of direct development.
[00:15:56] And Zach, you're right, like, and you've been around, you've seen a lot of them. [00:16:00] You've seen us change and pivot many times. A, we had to, but B, we shifted big time. I think my career changed around 20 13, 20 14. When we really left. We were, we were doing a lot of those things. We were doing a lot of outbound, a lot of direct marketing.
[00:16:17] Mm-hmm. , all interruption based stuff. And honestly like, it just was getting tired and I was getting tired. And I think what changed is watching, I love revolutionary marketing. I love different Hmm. I love the things that are gonna be those, that's why we love Dave. We're, we're, we help David's beat Golia.
[00:16:35] It's this underdog. It's not what you expected. But it works. Yeah. And it really works. So there's lots of marketing out there, lots of choices. And honestly, we're pretty critical of most of them. Cause we've had to be really critical on ourselves. And my career story is really about this evolution of learning marketing that is almost like sneaky and unexpected, but comes in and is [00:17:00] one plus one equals.
[00:17:01] Yeah. Yeah. And it, and it breaks through all the other software doing. Cause most people it's outside in. Yeah. They have a problem. They bring something in from the outside. What we've learned and what we do, we go inside out. We wanna un look under your hood and like we don't wanna just first bring things from the outside, Hey, we did this for somebody else.
[00:17:21] This will probably work for you. Yeah. That's like most marketing pitches out there. Yeah. Hey, we have this really cool algorithm. We do it with this school. Let's do it with you, is what it costs. Right? We're more like, let's look at the inside out. That might work. It might, it might not though. And to do that takes a lot more time.
[00:17:38] But I think the outcome you. . That's the only way you get one plus one equals three.
[00:17:43] Zach Busekrus: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Oh, so well said. I I think that's a wonderful transition into just helping folks who are turning into this conversation better understand who GD agency is. Many folks who are listening and probably have, you know, heard you speak at a conference, Tony or Jamie, maybe they've, you know, interacted with you on LinkedIn, but they might [00:18:00] not know.
[00:18:00] Kind of what, what Didi agency actually does today. So what, what's sort of like the Shark Tank pitch if you, if you had to give it on, on where Didi Agency focuses? It's, it's time, it's, it's it's attention these days. Yeah.
[00:18:14] Jaime Gleason: Um, I, I mean, I'll speak as a, as a previous director of admissions, right? Like, I think a lot of times when you get, you know, ins, uh, sorry, vendors that come to your table, they're, they're saying, Hey, how do we help?
[00:18:25] Build this, you know, direct mail piece, update your website a lot, like build some digital ads and things like that. All this like, like what Tony was saying, it's a lot of outbound, it's a lot of spray. It's like just a lot of, it's actually just a lot of market noise. Hmm. Um, totally. What we really like, the thing that makes, sets us apart in my mind is the fact that we are focused on, we're really focused on like, what's the user looking for from.
[00:18:52] like how do you answer their questions? How do you meet their needs? How do you provide for them an authentic service, even if they don't come, you know, become an enrolled [00:19:00] student. It's like, how do you answer this question that helps them along the path? And that's like, that's the sh I mean that, that's not really a shark tanky pitch.
[00:19:08] I'm not sure anyone would say, yeah, I'm in for that, but, but I think that the relative truth is we live in an era of people who have been marketed. So much that they're callous to, like, to the noise. We have to figure out a way to help them through the process. And sometimes that means, um, it, it means we, we make different sorts of noise.
[00:19:31] Like, you know, Tony's, Tony's coin term here, sneaky marketing. It's more like what we're really trying to do is, um, we're trying to provide that service. Yeah. And ultimately that's, that's gonna move them along the.
[00:19:43] Zach Busekrus: Yeah. Yeah. Uh, so well said. What, what would you add to that, Tony? I,
[00:19:47] Tony Fraga: I think that's great. I, I'd say, you know, in short couple simple words like, you know, DD agency and a lot of folks know us as being very inbound.
[00:19:54] Like we really kind of crafted and built inbound enrollment marketing [00:20:00] as a thing. Um, but we love inbound because of the principles behind it, um, which are really about being way more conversion centric, using a lot more data to inform the decision making. I know everyone says they use data and I get it, but like very, very few.
[00:20:15] Agencies and schools are really using data that goes all the way down and is accountable to the bottom line. And I, I've seen so many reports and been in so many meetings and it's just, it's just not there. Yeah. And I really think that is changing, but that's who we are. We're we're very inbound. S because it's more permission-based, it's more organic, frankly.
[00:20:34] I would say. The other word that comes to mind to describe us as sustainable. Yeah. And this is, this is maybe getting into a bigger can of worms. I don't know if, if today we wanna get into it, but like I would say we are really all about a more sustainable marketing. Um, . Um, and we're big on strategy before just jumping into the tactics.
[00:20:53] That's kind of who we are and what our clients would all they, they kind of know us for, uh, in bringing to the table in our [00:21:00] partnerships.
[00:21:00] Zach Busekrus: Which I feel like is, is somewhat unique actually in, in like the higher ed specific agency space. Uh, not that other people don't care about sustainability or not, that other people don't care about great marketing and, and consulting the data, but, uh, DD agency is very, very content marketing focused, very inbound focused.
[00:21:17] And y you all are also a, a HubSpot partner agency, which I think is a, is a big deal, right? Mm-hmm. and more, more people in, in this space are. learning about HubSpot are, are actually on HubSpot, but HubSpot's still sort of like rela. It's not like new, new, but it's, it's not like mainstream, I would say in, in higher ed yet, but it's becoming more, more of that.
[00:21:35] And HubSpot sort of like wrote the book on inbound marketing, so Yeah. Yeah. Know that you all have also had years and years of experience helping schools of like all shapes and sizes get on board with HubSpot mm-hmm. and help, help figure out Okay. What, what kind of campaigns in the context of your strategic enrollment plan might make sense to, to be a little bit more inbound focused, right.
[00:21:53] Yeah. In. Inbound is hard, right? Cuz it takes, it takes time. , and it's often, it's often like slow at first. Yeah. Right? Yeah. But then [00:22:00] you're, it's like you're investing, right? And it compounds greatly over time. And I think that you all probably more than anyone else in, in this particular, uh, niche, uh, space of agency right in, in higher ed, understand inbound, understand things like s e o uh, on a, on a really, really, really granular level.
[00:22:16] So I, I'm just hoping some of that also comes through on the podcast because I think, I think quite frankly, not enough people in higher. Know enough about things like seo and I think that that's, yeah. That, that is a solution for, for many institutions when it comes to limited budget, limited time, limited staff, it's, yep.
[00:22:31] All right. How do you think in a very strategic, organic fashion, if you can't just spend $50,000 a month on, on paid search, right? Yeah. Yeah. So I'm, I'm excited to hear, you know, more, more thoughts on. Um, I, I do wanna give you guys an opportunity to just share any, any like hot higher ed marketing takes that you, that you might have.
[00:22:50] And if Hot Take is, is too, like triggering . It can be, it can be like a warm take. We'll settle for warm takes. Um, but yeah. Jamie, Jamie, let's start with you. Yeah. And then, [00:23:00] and, and Tony. Um, you can, you can pop in after that
[00:23:02] Jaime Gleason: hot takes. Okay. So what I feel like I'm watching a lot right now, um, and I'm super interested into how, like, over the next 18 months, how this is gonna pan out.
[00:23:10] Okay. I feel like I've been saying for about four years that credentialing, you know, accreditation and things like that, those things are on the, the downward side. So recently I live in Pennsylvania. Uh, recently we got a new governor. As of like, actually last Monday we got a new governor, or Tuesday, sorry, Monday was a holiday.
[00:23:30] Um, we got a new governor. First thing he. He got rid of the degree requirement for all government employees in Pennsylvania. Okay. Wow. So, interestingly enough, and, and his whole goal in doing this was how do we basically as a, as a kind of a state employer, how do we kind of, uh, show as a role model what we wanna happen in the whole workspace?
[00:23:54] Yeah. With, with no uncertain terms. We want other industries to follow suit, take away the degree requirements for me, [00:24:00] automatic red flag trigger with this do for higher ed, because obviously we're in the, we're in the business of providing these degrees. Yeah, yeah. So it, so for me right now, what I'm watching, what I'm super curious on is like, what is the, what is the role, like the, the fallback or.
[00:24:16] Fallout, yeah. For accreditation and that process nationwide. As this starts to happen, how do people, how to hire ed institutions, uh, pivot toward that new paradigm and basically retrofit their degree programs to become more focused on the learning, the knowing the experience, and less on their cred.
[00:24:38] Zach Busekrus: Yeah.
[00:24:38] Ooh, that's a, that is a good one. And that's controversial because we don't . Yeah. I know a lot of people, uh, have, have hot takes on, on what you just said, Jamie, I'm sure. So , um, yeah. Your LinkedIn D Yeah. Record might blow up. I mean,
[00:24:51] Jaime Gleason: I would say this, if you have a hot take on that record a voice memo and send it to the enroll by podcast.
[00:24:56] We'd love to hear
[00:24:57] Zach Busekrus: it. Love it. Love it. What about, what about you, Tony? [00:25:00]
[00:25:00] Tony Fraga: Yeah, so I'm, I'm gonna piggyback off what I just dropped earlier about sustainable. I actually think sustainable marketing will become the norm, and that's just my term for it there. I think the other phrases of that looks like what I see schools doing right now and is this big reckoning, and I actually think the pandemic.
[00:25:17] Accelerated this very fast, but it was already starting before that. It's just got quickly accelerated as schools are having a huge reckoning with the money they're spending, the strategies and tactics they're employing and what is really working, not just from an R o I. , but from an r o e, like the energy and people and staff and time put into the things.
[00:25:45] Hmm. Um, and I'm seeing a huge like, whoa. It's not okay anymore. Whereas before that, I would say a lot of things were, were just left. Okay. Because there was a fear of the unknown or there just was a lack of data. And so it was like, well, we can't get [00:26:00] the data. We're not sure, but we're not gonna stop this either because it's overall, we think it's working and everyone was afraid.
[00:26:06] Now I'm seeing less fear as new leadership comes in and new directors. Managers come in of saying, yeah, just cuz we did that before isn't a reason anymore. Yeah, let's, and they're getting more savvy at looking at the data and the numbers. I think that leads to two things. Schools are either, Going down the path of more building, more in-house teams like we're seeing a huge amount of schools right now, particularly in markcom marketing communications teams.
[00:26:35] This isn't always necessarily happening in enrollment management, but it is definitely more in markcom. We're seeing schools investing and bringing in-house talent into Markcom teams. Now, I think about five or 10 years ago there was a like a, a decompression of that. Now there's like a blow up of that and there's more, and they're bringing in.
[00:26:50] Um, that's great. It's not, not great for agencies like us who need who, who provide a lot of those services, but what I think their need is when they're building in-house teams is they need a lot more consulting and strategic [00:27:00] advice. Yeah. The other path is what I call not outsourcing, but smart sourcing.
[00:27:07] And it's where I see a lot of schools getting a lot smarter about what they are outsourcing. So they're actually outsourcing less, but outsourcing, um, to less different partners or software or solutions. So instead of having 18, they have eight. Instead of having 10, they've got four. Yeah, so there's less vendors essentially, that schools are partnering with to do their outsourcing because they're getting smarter about it and they're putting the money together to have a, a larger impact, rather than spreading lots of that money out across a lot of solutions.
[00:27:40] Yeah. I think all that though is the result of what I would call sustainable marketing revolution, which I think is absolutely here and starting to really blow
[00:27:49] Zach Busekrus: up in higher. . Yeah. And just to, just to add a couple things to that. I think you're, you're spot on and I mean, we're seeing this happen across the world right now, right?
[00:27:57] With, with, you know, organ, uh, [00:28:00] industries. Uh, like, like I think about tech, right? Which has been in the news this week. Just like the incredible number of layoffs, people getting lean, regardless of what you think of what Elon's doing at, at Twitter. Like he's, he's showing a model in which a massive tech company can run.
[00:28:15] You know, a fraction of the staff. Sure. That was previously thought, uh, that was needed to, to run something like a Twitter. Right. And so I, I do think that there's this, there's this moment, right? That we're, that we're heading into, uh, where folks are are looking at every dollar and they're looking at every hour and they're thinking, Hmm.
[00:28:30] Like, do I wanna spend this time. The same way this next, you know, academic year or, Hey, do I, do I actually need my team members to be spending all of this time looking through data and reports and, and they quite frankly, just like don't have the training and I don't have the time to, to train them on how to do this.
[00:28:47] Is, is, is having a vendor, you know, partner. Join us in helping us with sort of, uh, the analysis of our data and then, uh, of the formation of a strategic, a strategic plan maybe that is actually important this year. Yep. Whereas, you know, hey, maybe, you know what, [00:29:00] maybe we can trade in our people to write really good event marketing emails and maybe we can stop spending, you know, money on hiring somebody else to, to do that for us.
[00:29:07] Right. So I do think, Tony, you're, you're spot on there. , there's this reckoning happening. I was actually just talking to a, a higher ed cmo who's well known in the industry, and she was telling me that she is hiring for 20 roles in her markon department. Yeah. Right now. 20 roles. Right? Yeah. And, and she's like, yeah.
[00:29:24] And what's really hard is that like, I, I need each of these people, each of these roles, I still need them to wear like three hats. Right. And I still can't hate them that much. Right. And so she's saying, she's like, okay, I need them in the word three hats. I need them to be great people, but I also know. I have caps on salary.
[00:29:39] And so she was, yeah, she was literally saying what you're saying of, I have to get really critical and think really deeply about who do I, you know, what can I bring in partners to do for me? Yeah. And then what can I not afford partners to do for me? Because I need my people to do those things. And it's just, it's a very hard time.
[00:29:54] Right. It's a very girl
[00:29:55] Tony Fraga: she's double spending. Right, exactly. And then add this, and then add this to that. Here's, here's the truth of what's gonna [00:30:00] happen in 2023. I know there'll be some exceptions, but my predict. , it's gonna take two to three times longer to hire those people than most schools think. Oh yeah.
[00:30:07] And so it's a great idea. Mm-hmm. . But where we're already seeing schools, I mean, Jamie, how many, how many conversations we have with schools, are they like two, three months out still trying to hire for these roles? Yeah. And they're gonna be out another two or three months. So you're out six months, you made the decision you're gonna do it, but it's six months to.
[00:30:25] Yeah. That is a, that is really difficult. What do you do in the meantime? Like, so again, I hope that doesn't stay true for a lot of folks, but the, what I'm seeing is, yeah, it is hard to hire for those positions. So hopefully they can get all those tech people who just got laid off, um, , but they gotta try and attract them with non Silicon Valley salaries.
[00:30:45] It's gonna be a little
[00:30:45] Zach Busekrus: tough, but if they
[00:30:46] Jaime Gleason: can't, then you always head to direct development.com and look up the.
[00:30:50] Zach Busekrus: There you go. There you go. . Boom. Good. Jamie, that was great. Hiring plug. Shameless hiring plug, Jamie. I love it. Um, alright guys, well, I, I wanna [00:31:00] close out our, our conversation today by just talking a little bit more about the pivot, right?
[00:31:03] And like what, what we can expect from, from the podcast. So I know that you guys have thought long and hard about how to structure the show, uh, gone back and forth about like, formats that might make the most sense. So, uh, I just would love for. Both share a little bit about, again, uh, what we can expect from the show and any other sort of like plugs as to why, why folks who are listening to our conversation today should head on over and, and subscribe to the show.
[00:31:26] So Tony, why don't we start with you now and then we'll, we'll
[00:31:29] Tony Fraga: close up. Oh, thanks for starting with me. You started Jamie like five times.
[00:31:32] Zach Busekrus: We're waiting my, I like keep you on your toes. I like to keep you on your toes. .
[00:31:35] Tony Fraga: No, I'm kidding. I, no, I actually do have a quick one on this. Um, I would like the pivot this.
[00:31:42] We have, we have like, uh, several core values, six core values in our company. My favorite one is adapt and improve, and we talk a lot about that DD agency adapt and improve what is adapt and improve, though really it's really a bunch of pivoting. That's really what it's . It's about being nimble enough.
[00:31:57] Mm-hmm. to change direction. in the middle [00:32:00] of a plan for the betterment of the results. At the end of the day, pivoting is about making a change to deal with. You know, no, no plan survives. Contact with the enemy. No marketing plan survives. Contact with the A with the actual real world, right? You gotta make changes if you wait too long to make those changes.
[00:32:16] You're gonna fail. Yep. Pivoting is this essence of like quick turn, quick adjustment of trajectory. You change your aim just a little bit. That can make or break whether you hit your goals or not. And I would say that's what this podcast is about. It comes out of the ethos of our company, of which adapt and improve is like that's a sandwich we eat every morning for like, for breakfast.
[00:32:40] And that's what this podcast I think is all about, is sharing. And really we're gonna be coming into challenges like we want a live fire. This whole idea of like, okay, what's the challenge this week? As as like, yeah, we walked in, what are we facing this week? Mm-hmm. , a lot of this is gonna be off the cuff, like impro two, not so much like [00:33:00] prepared something off the shelf that we're presenting.
[00:33:02] Yeah. Uh, and we hope that that is more real and relevant to what people in the higher ed space are kind of dealing with right now.
[00:33:11] Jaime Gleason: Yeah. I would say to, to, to follow up on that, I think, um, you know, what I expect out of this show, one, I wanna laugh. I want to be able to take things that like, that are in, in some ways, you know, it's very interesting because higher ed has a Jurassic need to pivot.
[00:33:28] higher ed has, has historically been very slow to make that change. Yeah. So what we wanna do is like, you know, we, we get the pleasure and, and the ability every week of, of interacting with literally dozens of partners that we work with. And we have a plethora of situations that. Come to basically come to our doorstep.
[00:33:49] We wanna under be able to understand those process through them and then offer the advice that we give to our clients. Like, basically like how did we arrive at that? What are the potential [00:34:00] fallouts, like, how do we fail fast and cheap? What's the ab test look like? So, so for me, like as a, as a a person who's a pragmatist, like I wanna have our listeners be able to.
[00:34:11] Um, here are things that really apply to where they are in their institution and be able to walk away with like, Like that was a good thought. That's a, like, I got two different, like potential answers or two pathways that I could follow. I'm gonna maybe try one out this week or try one out, uh, you know, in my strategic plan and go from there.
[00:34:31] So yeah, I want to be practical. I want it to be fun. I want it to be like, um, in a lot of ways, uh, it has to fit the, it has to fit where higher ed is. So in some cases too, I want it to be, Um, seasonal. I want people to like, to say, oh, this is what's ha like the thing that I mentioned in Pennsylvania. It's like, I think that has an impact on how schools, you know, in the next year, think about how they're gonna market to that.
[00:34:55] Like, so, so what's that mean? How do we pivot out of that? So, Hope that, [00:35:00] yeah,
[00:35:00] Zach Busekrus: those, those were both fantastic answers. And, and what I do love about what you guys are doing with your show, which is, which is unique, we're gonna have, like from, from day one, there'll be in the show notes below, there'll be a link to a, a form where people can submit Yes.
[00:35:12] Their current challenges, their, their current, right. Like literally like a situation like you can describe literally, , this is what I, I am a, you know, VP of enrollment management. Here's like the three things I'm struggling with right now. Yeah. It's, you know, I'm making this date up, it's April 15th. Right.
[00:35:26] And, um, I, I need, I need some help. Right. Like, you know, uh, deadlines are just around the corner. Like, like what would you guys do if you were in my shoes? Right. So from the beginning, uh, folks are gonna be able to go in and, and submit, uh, uh, essentially like, you know, their own case study Yeah. Of like, hey, like, talk to me.
[00:35:44] This is what, you know, what I'm, what I'm dealing with. And, um, you guys will be able to live, react to that on the show. Uh, maybe you'll get a little bit of prep ahead of time. We'll see. But, uh, it's gonna be, it's gonna be a lot of fun. It's gonna be, uh, moderated, which I think is, is gonna be great from, from another colleague.
[00:35:57] Shout out to Shane Keel, who will be the, the [00:36:00] moderator for this, uh, dynamic discussion. Shane's
[00:36:02] Tony Fraga: job is basically gonna make sure Jamie doesn't go too crazy and act out .
[00:36:07] Zach Busekrus: Exactly. Let's just call what it is. Exactly. Come on. He's gonna be, he's the babysitter. He's the babysitter in chief. Yeah. You guys are also trying to kind of keep this show around kind of that 30 to 35 minute mark, which again, is, is gonna, it's gonna be short, it's gonna be sweet, it's gonna be impactful.
[00:36:20] Um, we'll see. You're able do it. Digestible. Digestible. It's hard. Digestible. It's hard. It's hard to do like a podcast. I keep telling everyone it's hard to do it in the less than 35 minutes. But hey, if you guys can do it, uh, if there's anyone that can do it, you guys can do it. So I, I'm pumped for, uh, for this show for our listeners, if you want to, uh, scroll down to the show notes, you can find links to the pivot where you can subscribe on Apple, Spotify.
[00:36:41] Anywhere you get your podcast, we'll also have Jamie and Tony's LinkedIn, um, profiles linked below. So if you're not already connected with them, I highly encourage you to do so. And then, of course, if you wanna learn more about DEI agency and all the great work that the team is doing there, you'll have, we'll have links to DEI Agency's website below as well.
[00:36:58] Gentlemen, thank you so much [00:37:00] for your time, and I'm excited to tune into the pivot. Thanks, Zach.
[00:37:04] Tony Fraga: Thanks, Zach. Always a pleasure.
[00:37:14] Zach Busekrus: Hey y'all. Zach here from Enrollify. I hope you enjoyed this episode of the Enrollify Podcast. If you like this episode, do us a huge favor and hit that follow and subscribe button below. Furthermore, if you've got just two minutes to spare, we would greatly appreciate you reading a rating and a review of this show on Apple Podcast.
[00:37:31] Our podcast network is growing by the month, and we've got a plethora of marketing admissions and higher ed technology. That are jam-packed with stories, ideas, and frameworks that are all designed to empower you to become a better higher ed professional. But Enrollify is far more than just a podcast network.
[00:37:49] Enrollify is where higher ed comes to learn new marketing skills, discover new products and services, and find their next job. We're a growing learning community of 4,000 members, and we'd love to welcome you into. [00:38:00] You can access our free blog, articles, newsletters, e-courses, and more, or purchase our master course on how to market a university with Terry Flannery at enrollify.org.[00:38:10] We look forward to meeting you soon and welcoming you into the community. Again, you can subscribe for free enrollify.org.
About the Episode
The what's what...
Buckle up, folks! Enrollify is proud to announce its newest podcast, The Pivot — a show for the enrollment marketer looking for marketing strategies and tactics that don’t take years and bucco bucks to implement.
Join Tony Fraga and Jamie Gleason — marketing scientists at DD Agency — every other week for an engaging conversation on what you and your team can do NOW to impact marketing and enrollment goals.
The Pivot is facilitated by Shane Kehl, Chief Edutainment Officer at Enrollify. Subscribe to The Pivot here or wherever you get your podcasts.
This episode is brought to you by our friends at DD Agency:
DD Agency is a higher ed-specific marketing technology agency that has conducted countless SEO Audits for colleges and universities across the country.
In these audits, they detail where you currently rank, what you could be ranking for, exactly how copy should be tweaked on website pages, and much more.
If this sounds like something you could benefit from, give those folks a ping and be sure to mention that Enrollify sent you to claim a 10% discount on any of their SEO offerings.
Head on over to enrollify.org/ddaseo, or simply follow the link in the show notes below…that will guarantee you get a 10% discount off of your audit.
About the Enrollify Podcast Network
The Enrollify Podcast is a part of the Enrollify Podcast Network. If you like this podcast, chances are you’ll like other Enrollify shows too!
Our podcast network is growing by the month and we’ve got a plethora of marketing, admissions, and higher ed technology shows that are jam packed with stories, ideas, and frameworks all designed to empower you to be a better higher ed professional.
Our shows feature a selection of the industry’s best as your hosts. Learn from Jaime Hunt, Allison Turcio, Corynn Myers, Dustin Ramsdell, Terry Flannery, Jaime Gleason and many more.Learn more about The Enrollify Podcast Network at podcasts.enrollify.org. Our shows help higher ed marketers and admissions professionals find their next big idea — come and find yours!
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!
Tony is the CEO and a marketing strategist at DD — an enrollment marketing technology agency that specializes in implementing inbound, content-based methodologies. He leads a team of fast-paced marketing innovators, who handle everything from content creation to marketing automation, and thrives at the intersection of strategy and technology. Tony speaks regularly at higher education and non-profit marketing conferences on the topics of content marketing, SEO, and the latest trends in digital media.
Jamie Gleason is the Vice President Of Enrollment Strategy at Direct Development. He brings over 15 years of higher education experience to the team; almost a decade of which was spent on campus(es) and nearly six years was in edtech. A self-proclaimed "farmer + fixer," Enrollment has always provided the perfect challenge for him! He's happiest when mining through spreadsheets, results, and (generally) any type of data!
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DD Agency is a digital marketing agency for higher education with a propensity for marketing technology. They're the only HubSpot Platinum Partner Agency that exclusively serves the enrollment marketing space. Living out their mission statement "We help Davids beat Goliaths" means DD helps clients develop inbound marketing strategies that use content and marketing automation to achieve their enrollment goals. Whether you're looking for a full-fledged, 12-month strategic marketing plan, or just a fresh approach to a blitz campaign, they're the marketing partner you want in your corner! The DD team is guided by 6 core values: treat clients like family, be ridiculously helpful, challenge conventional thinking, treasure transparency, adapt and improve, and "make it fridge-worthy."learn more
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