The Challenge

AwardConcorde Career Colleges, Inc. owns and operates proprietary, post-secondary institutions that offer vocational career training for careers in health care. Concorde currently offers over 20 programs on 16 campuses in 8 states.

With a vast network of graduates working in health care, Concorde Career Colleges wanted to create a path for these graduates to share their stories with prospective students, refer friends who might become students, and if necessary, tap into employment services for alumni.

"Our alumni made us a part of their largest lifetime investments, their education and livelihood," says Lisa Reinhart, Senior Director of Marketing. "The main problem that we were looking to solve was how to continuously engage our alumni post-graduation. What we were able to identify is that post-graduation, it had been assumed that graduates would automatically stay in contact with little effort on our side. The automated engagement that we have put in place with the emfluence team guarantees each of our alumni receives touchpoint messaging that reminds them that we are here and want to hear from them."

The Solution

Concorde Career Colleges teamed up with emfluence to create a four-part email nurture designed to engage recent Concorde Alumni in their first year post graduation.

The first email is sent to students 7 days after graduation with a, “Congratulations on completing your program” message. Within the creative, there are links for recipients to: Submit their Story (student testimonials), update their contact information, get in contact with the Graduate Employment team, and Refer a Friend. The first email of the series has averaged a 60.3% unique open rate throughout the first 9 months of this campaign.

The second email of the series is sent 30 days after graduation. This email serves as a check-in, but it is also a reminder of the resources available to those in the Concorde community. The first call to action for recipients is a link to Job Hunting Tips from the Graduate Employment team. There are also links to the Concorde Alumni Association and the latest Alumni Newsletter, a quarterly publication. The email creative also includes a link to Refer a Friend.

The third email deploys three months post-graduation. This email comes from each campus president (through variable data) and aims to be another check-in email. In addition to the Graduation Employment team and Alumni Association, there is also a suggestion to become a Concorde mentor – allowing alums to give back.

The final email of the series comes one year after graduation. Following the same template as the first two emails, there are calls to action to become a mentor, read the most recent newsletter, refer a friend, and to submit their story for a testimonial in future publications.

Since launching in February of 2017, Concorde Career Colleges have seen a 25% decrease in email unsubscribe rates. On the whole, the campaign averages a 49.2% unique open rate (91.8% total open rate).

Of all link clicks in the email series, 32.6% of link clicks were to the Graduate Employment webpage (90.3% of clicks to that specific page came from the initial email in the series). The second most clicked call to action has been the Job Hunting Tips link in email #2, which garnered 27.8% of unique clicks. Since campaign launch, the Alumni Lead Series campaign has seen just 9 unsubscribes and one complaint from 11,774 emails sent.
Concorde Career Colleges Alumni Email Series slide #0 Concorde Career Colleges Alumni Email Series slide #1 Concorde Career Colleges Alumni Email Series slide #2 Concorde Career Colleges Alumni Email Series slide #3
Alumni relationships are integral in telling the Concorde story, both to future graduates and the community as a whole. It allows us to celebrate our alumni achievements and follow up if there is an issue that needs to be resolved. In addition to the four initial touchpoints, we have also recently introduced a video birthday card as well as a holiday message. We are excited to see what the next phase of alumni engagement holds. Thanks to our emfluence team for bringing this project to life.

— Lisa Reinhart, Director of Marketing Operations, Concorde Career Colleges

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