Modernizing Higher Education Enrollment through Advanced Marketing Strategy and Attribution

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Higher Education is facing real growth challenges going into 2024. With increased competition every year from in-market and out-of-market competitors and public sentiment about higher education degrees dropping, the colleges and universities that leverage New Jersey-based Umbrella Digital Marketing’s team to increase quality student enrollment are doing so through understanding data.

By aligning specific goals for each program UDM manages, diversifying the media mix, and leveraging advanced tracking and integration with the institution’s CRM, Umbrella Digital can drive results and objectively quantify those results for leadership teams that want to know the true ROI from digital marketing efforts on student growth.

The bottom line – Umbrella Digital Marketing partners don’t focus on lead generation; they focus on enrollment growth by understanding where future students discover and engage with their content from awareness, through consideration, and onto conversion.

Strategy and Execution: Aligning Goals for Each Graduate Program

The first thing is to understand the specific goals for any dollar being invested in marketing. By tailoring messaging, channels, audience, and tactics, Umbrella Digital uses multi-touch attribution analytics married to lead and enrollment analytics from our partner’s CRM to align media engagement data to student application data.

By leveraging a combination of paid digital media platforms, such as social media advertising, search engine marketing, and display advertising at the correct level of investment for each program – as leads work through the enrollment process, Umbrella can objectively increase investment in impactful channels and cut spending in inefficient channels. This automatically increases the efficiency of every dollar spent on behalf of our partners.

Integration with CRM:

CPL (cost per lead) tracking is a common practice among all digital marketing providers. Umbrella knows the goal is quality enrollments, by integrating with our partner’s CRM, Umbrella can track the full lifecycle of digital discovery, lead engagement, application, and enrollment – the real KPI (Key Performance Indicator) for our partner’s executive leadership.

Understanding which “paths of travel” were most likely to generate leads, applications, and ultimately – enrollments should be and is the focus of great Higher Education marketing.

Tracking Media-Generated Applications and Enrollments:

Umbrella Digital can attribute application submissions and enrollments to specific marketing touchpoints and campaigns. This provides valuable insights into which media channels and strategies were driving the highest enrollment conversion rates.

Understanding the correlation between media engagement and enrollments, rather than just leads, allows UDM and our partners to refine their media planning further and place media investment into student growth, not lead data growth.


Most agencies have access to the same tools in terms of channel reach – the nuance and the difference in Umbrella’s offerings relative to our peers are the ability to quickly, succinctly, and easily integrate and understand key business data points. By aligning media engagement with enrollments and not just leads, our partner’s marketing teams can easily and objectively demonstrate the impact of investment on growth, easing leadership’s concerns over wasted spending and inefficiencies in growth strategies.

As higher education institutions strive to optimize their marketing efforts, Umbrella Digital Marketing remains a trusted partner, leveraging data-driven insights to drive student enrollment growth and success. Reach out today at

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