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Internet Marketing and Web Development in Higher Education and other tidbits…

Markmissions: A New Bonding Between Marketing and Admissions

08 Jun 2011

written by Kyle James

Markmissions: A New Bonding Between Marketing & Admissions

Internal company battles between marketing and sales are as old as modern companies.  Each have unique responsibilities, but are ultimately tied at the hip to the other’s success.  Marketing is dependent on sales to close the leads that they generate and sales is likewise dependant on marketing to generate new leads to close.  Despite this need for each other the two sides rarely seem to get along in companies.

At HubSpot the two sides were actually able to take a step back long ago and realize their need for each other.  Through this they created a uniformed concept which we call Smarketing.  Through the use of service level agreements (SLA) instead of blaming each other the two sides know exactly what they are responsible for and how they will help the other side.  We have weekly Smarketing meetings where the two departments come together and talk about challenges and wins together.  As we have learned to make this relationship possible it starts with excellent communicationThere is a great post on the HubSpot blog to learn more about our approach to solving for Smarketing.

The truth is higher education has pretty much the exact same problem with marketing and admission offices.  One of those resources that they regularly fight over is web development.  Sometimes schools have relationships between the two departments that are so broken that they each have their own web resources and do things in silos against each other.  I want to propose a concept similar to Smarketing for higher education, Markmission.

So maybe Markmissions sounds cheesy to you, but the reality is most colleges simply aren’t functioning as well as they could because of the animosity between these two vital departments.  Some colleges have a champion who bridges the gap and others all report to the same higher up which helps.  We have all heard the kick of reality that the flattening of higher education is coming.  This is a logical step in that direction that doesn’t have to be so painful.

After seeing Smarketing in effect for the last two years I can attest to its bonding power.  Being a software company we have also started building other communication channels for a Prustomer initiative.  Prustomer is Product + Customer for anyone who wasn’t sure because building a software solution that customers use and love is one of the hardest bridges to build.

What do you think of Markmissions?  Are these departments in colleges are much better aligned than I’m giving credit?  Are there other departments that need a stronger bond?

The content of this post is licensed: The post is released under a Creative Commons by-nc-sa 3.0 license

About the author

Kyle James

Kyle is the CEO & Co-Founder at nuCloud and formerly the webmaster at Wofford College. He also spent almost 4 years at HubSpot doing a range of jobs including inbound marketing consulting, sales, management, and product management.  Kyle is an active contributor in the social media spectrum. Although his background is technical, he claims to know a thing or two about marketing, but mostly that revolves around SEO, analytics, blogging, and social media. He has spoken at multiple national conferences and done countless webinars on topics ranging from e-mail marketing to social media and Web analytics. He's definitely a fairly nice guy.

Ways to Connect with Kyle

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  • Ron Bronson

    I think it really depends on the institution. Some places, the relationships are more integrated. Other places I’ve been, it’s bordering on adversarial. I do think there’s increased recognition of the synergy and the trend seems to be melding the two together as a result. Seems this will eventually become the norm, rather than the exception. 

  • Allie Sherlock

    I agree completely. I know there are many institutions out there who deserve to have a great relationship with their Marketing and Admissions departments. I feel lucky to have a good working relationship at our institution. However that doesn’t necessarily mean its successful. The need to blend certain projects across departments has caused us to rely on each other to provide some necessary services to our campus community. That is not necessarily the ideal. But I still prefer a good working relationship that I can improve on over none at all.

  • rickahardy

    Kyle, you’re right, there may be issues with these two departments. In higher education, there are always organizational issues. In this case, it depends on where they are organizationally aligned. Funny, I wrote a recent post on this subject on my blog that details advantages of having admissions and marketing under the same roof. But some of the issues aren’t necessarily tied to organization. They’re related to how a university defines marketing. If it’s just about publications and media buys, then admissions may claim that they are the ones truly marketing the institution by the development of admissions marketing plans that detail target markets, messaging, tactics, SWOT, etc. But whatever the dysfunction, you’re right, communication is the key. 

  • discount scrubs

    Hi James!!! I like this and i bookmark it for my knowledge purpose because i am new in marketing. Marketing and Sales both are responsible behind the company success. if Markmissions will successfully executive, then i think it comes new evolution in the business world. Concept behind Markmission is to bring this two separate departments at one place so we can produce high relationship ratio. i think proper planning strategy can drive these this both departments concurrently. Thanks for sharing and hope to post more on marketing. 

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    Your post really helped me to understand the A New Bonding Between Marketing and  Admissions. It has great details and yet it is easy to understand.
    That’s what i was looking for. I will definitely share it with others.

    Thanks for sharing.

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  • Govind Sharma

    It is a perfect concept. If institution follows this concept they can improve their efficiency because a link between marketing and admission can solve many issues. If they integrate this department they can know which factors are affecting each other. I think this a wonderful concept and it should be happen.

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