Turning Absense into Attendance

March 26, 2024

Digital Strategies to Engage First-Time Event Alumni

Universities and alumni associations stand at the crossroads of tradition and innovation, constantly seeking ways to strengthen their bond with the alumni community. Amid this quest lies a group often overlooked: the unengaged alumni. These individuals, despite their lack of interaction, hold the potential to become active, contributing members of the alumni network. This narrative unveils a strategic approach to capture their attention and transform them into enthusiastic participants in the university’s vibrant life.

Boosting Alumni Event Attendance: A Strategy for Engagement

Events serve as the heartbeat of alumni relations, offering unforgettable experiences that resonate with attendees long after the curtains close. Yet, the challenge of drawing in those who have drifted away remains. How do you engage alumni who have never attended your events?

Boosting Event Attendance with Digital Ads

Traditional communication methods like email can’t always reach the alumni we most want to engage, leading universities to turn to more effective solutions. Digital ads offer a unique opportunity to connect with these alumni, presenting a chance to promote university events in a way that’s both eye-catching and targeted. These ads can reach alumni where they’re most active online, from social media to browsing their favorite websites, and offer customization options to ensure the right message gets to the right people. By leveraging the power of digital advertising, universities can increase awareness of their events and significantly boost attendance, re-engaging alumni in meaningful ways and fostering a stronger community connection.

Targeted Strategies to Reach Unengaged Alumni

To engage alumni who haven’t attended events, universities can dive deep into audience analysis, tapping their CRM to segment alumni based on their engagement levels. This data enables the creation of targeted ad strategies across display ads for visibility, social media for engagement, and search ads for direct interest capture. Tailoring messages specifically for this group ensures relevance and resonance. Additionally, deploying lookalike audiences on platforms like Facebook and Google Ads expands reach to similar profiles, potentially interested but previously unengaged individuals, significantly increasing the likelihood of event attendance and active participation.

The Proof is in the Participation: A Success Story Unfolds

The impact of this type of approach is both measurable and profound. At one partner institution, we launched a 12-week campaign that saw more than 429,000 impressions served, leading to 82 previously unengaged constituents stepping through the doors of an event. This remarkable achievement, attained at a cost of $52 per attendee, underscores the latent interest among alumni. They are not disinterested; they simply await the right invitation.

This strategy transcends mere attendance, laying the groundwork for deeper engagement. It’s about enriching the alumni tapestry with diverse threads, from those attending their first event to future advocates for the university. By extending the invitation far and wide, universities can transform the narrative of alumni relations, turning silent observers into active, passionate participants.

Build strategies to increase your engagement

Learn how targeted digital advertising can revitalize your alumni events and open doors to untapped potential. Dive into our case study and discover the keys to unlocking the hearts and minds of your unengaged alumni. Together, let’s create a future where every alumni feels connected, engaged, and inspired to participate in the life of their alma mater.