Rick Newberry, President of Enrollment Catalyst, featured a FACTS school—First Baptist Academy in Naples, FL—on his blog a couple years ago. He interviewed Rebecca Curran, FBA’s Director of Admissions, about a student-to-student referral program they had implemented called Friend Day.
Rick asked Rebecca about the success of Friend Day and she said:
“Over the years we have had between 62-96 students visit on Friend Day. We also have had a range of 8%-16% of those students become FBA students the following school year.”
Wow! Do you have a student referral program at your school? If not, you could be missing out on many prospective students! Here are some tips for implementing a student referral program.
Do These Things:
Offer Rewards – Incentivize families and students to provide referrals by offering rewards for their participation. The reward doesn’t need to be extravagant. It can something as simple as a gift card to a local pizza place, sports tickets, or a chance to win an even bigger prize.
Use Blogs – Have recent graduates write blog posts that detail what their experience was like as a student at your school. Blog posts from current and former students are an excellent way to attract new families and “sell” them on your school.
Utilize Your Databases – Use information you receive from other sources (like contacts from community events or alumni group data). Scrutinize the data closely and use it to identify potential families or influential community members who could work to help refer new students.
Approach These People:
Honor Societies – The National Honor Society is a good place to start. Ask for referrals from members and from their families.
Applying Students/Parents – Your application is an excellent place to ask for referrals. Have a place for them to enter the names and addresses of other families they feel would be a good fit for your school. Some schools offer incentives to incoming families that refer additional new students too. The FACTS Online Application simplifies the whole admissions process. It speeds up communication, eases the application submission process and can help generate leads for your school.