Business Lessons for Higher Education Marketing

Business Lessons for Higher Education Marketing

Ruth Gannon Cook (DePaul University School for New Learning, USA) and Kathryn Ley (University of Houston Clear-Lake, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-4014-6.ch003
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Today, recent business marketing approaches that depend upon market analysis and planning have stimulated the growth of marketing firms that offer sophisticated quantitative market analyses in order to identify an organization’s potential and current customers and their needs. This analysis contrasts educational service provider to enrollment outcomes at two nonprofit higher education institutions. The authors’ data indicates securing educational marketing services may be a costly approach in order to attract and keep customers or students.
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A Review Of The Literature

New marketing approaches have emerged over the fifty years since the 1950s, the golden days of marketing. As new forms of media have emerged, new marketing approaches have emerged to influence the service and product buyer (Hartman, 2010; Kabadayi, Eyuboglu, & Thomas, 2007; Shaik, 2005; Shaw & Tamilia, 2001). Drucker (2007), an expert in business and marketing theories, proposed marketing was necessarily an interdisciplinary effort. His research transcended boundaries and prompted a shift in marketing because “an interdisciplinary approach (also) leads to a more effective focus on customers and other stakeholders, better leveraging of resources and greater positive synergy” (Drucker, 2007, p. 31). Research on marketing higher education services has often been relegated to reaching potential students, and university branding (Haworth & Conrad, 1997; Jones, 2003). A few more recent studies have investigated new program rollouts and student retention (Hergert, 2003; Ley & Gannon-Cook, 2009; Johnstone, Ewell, & Paulson, 2002). An interdisciplinary literature review revealed several higher education marketing studies and for-profit consumer product marketing studies (Campagnuolo, 2008; Eagle & Goodstein, 2008; Kautz & Rayburn, 2006). In addition, the recent growth in online programs and the attendant rise of marketing service providers who serve higher education institutions has also been described in recent studies. (The Review of Literature of this study includes research reports published since 2005 investigating consumer product and higher education marketing efforts).

Since there seemed to be marketing studies from other disciplines that had been applied to higher education and had produced successful results that seemed to be transferrable across interdisciplinary borders (Campagnuolo, 2008; Eagle & Goodstein, 2008; Kautz & Rayburn, 2006), the researchers also incorporated a number of marketing studies from business applications into this study.

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