Geodemographic Research & Predictive Modeling

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College Marketing Technologies, Inc. & Applied Marketing Technologies © 2014. All Rights Reserved.| Sed vulputate

Recruit more effectively and efficiently

Identify and expand into new geodemographic market

Improve conversion rates

Improve retention  

Identify low or no-need students

Reduce Student Search/ACT Search/NRCCUA purchases

Prioritize inquiry and purchased name lists for direct mail

Reduce admissions travel expenses by targeting high schools visits

Achieve greater student body diversity

Reduce publication and postage expenses

Identify student prospects earlier and more accurately

College & University Clients

Proven Results:

A Well-Respected East Coast  University

Increase in Net Revenue

Improvement in Academic Quality

A large New England University

Improvement in Academic Quality

2% Decrease in Discount Rate

Net Revenue Up

Improvement in Academic Quality

Decrease in Admissions Budget

No Increase in Discount Rate

A Sizable Private Midwestern University

Before CMT

After CMT







New Students



Before CMT

After CMT







New Students



Before CMT

After CMT







New Students



Detailed Services:

College Marketing Technologies (CMT) provides geodemographic market segmentation research, predictive modeling, household income appending, and an array of other marketing services to colleges and universities to assist in leveraging admissions and development results.

Using a file of the college’s/university’s historic inquiry, applicant, and matriculant address records, CMT seeks to understand the school’s historic geographic draw, first by state, then by county and ZIP Code. CMT plots the school’s exact latitude and longitude (lat/long) and then distance ranks every inquiry/applicant/matriculant record from campus. CMT provides a County-Level U.S. Penetration Map (and report) that measures the college’s/university’s penetration into the available high school student age population by county and by ZIP Code. Penetration shows how well the school is doing (how many inquiries, applicants and matriculants) against the available 14-17 year old high school age population.

Each school will have a Primary Draw Area (PDA) constructed, which is made up of those counties/ZIP Codes nearest to the campus with exceedingly high penetration rates and usually a demographic “Profile” or footprint that is markedly different than the students who are enrolling from greater distances. The PDA is unique to each school and may conform to county, ZIP Code, or even distance band geography. The Primary Draw Area can sometimes be defined as the local/regional draw area. The college or university attracts some students from nearby because you are a selective, competitive school, but also, for these students, because you are close by. These students are not making a college selection because of “fit” or “congruence.”

A Secondary Draw Area (SDA) will be fashioned as well. This is the next distance layer of students beyond the PDA where penetration into the available high school student age population begins to disperse and where the college’s/university’s demographic student profile is usually different than it is in the Primary Draw Area. The SDA usually includes other counties/ZIP Codes in the home state as well as geographic markets in nearby states.

The Tertiary Draw Area might be the remainder of the US or those more distant markets where you attract students, usually for very specific reasons.

Draw Areas are constructed because often the demographic profile of who attends the college/university changes by geography. The demographic profile of who enrolls from your Primary Draw Area will likely be different than who enrolls from the Secondary and/or Tertiary Draw Areas. It is critical to build a specific historic profile in each Draw Area which will be used to target high potential students and high potential geographic markets in those same areas.

Next, each of the school’s inquiry, applicant, and matriculant address records, for the past three or four years, is geocoded and then assigned one of the 66 PRIZMne Clusters or neighborhood types. CMT licenses the PRIZMne market segmentation model from Nielsen/Claritas Corporation. See the Overview of Geodemography for more info. CMT will then examine the college’s/university’s success in generating student matriculants, by PRIZM Cluster, by Drawing Area against the available high school student age population. Finally, CMT will build demographic targets for the college/university in each Draw Area, that are customized aggregations of the 66 PRIZM Clusters. A separate PRIZM will be built in each Draw Area (DA) along with a separate set of targets.

Once Draw Areas have been defined and targets developed in each Draw Area, College Marketing Technologies can identify those ZIP Codes and counties in each Draw Area that offer the highest market potential because they hold concentrations of students who look most “alike” the college’s or university’s historic enrolled students. A Primary Draw Area Market Potential Map (and report), a Secondary Draw Area Market Potential Map (and report) and a Tertiary Draw Area Market Potential Map (and report) are provided. Therefore high potential markets are defined within the state, then in nearby states, and finally across the US. This will allow you to direct admissions resources, name purchases, and admissions travel into those geographic markets that offer the highest potential for matriculants. You will build a better inquiry and applicant pool because you are more effectively “matching” the student to your college/university.

Sometimes the college/university wishes to expand the reach of the school by opening high potential geographic markets in distant states. That interest may be precipitated by an inordinate number of inquiries or a large number of alumni from that market. CMT can calculate the college’s/university’s Market Potential Index for every Designated Market Area (DMA) in the US based upon the school’s historic profile (See U.S. Market Potential map). Large 2’ x 3’ colored maps along with a supporting report can be providing directing the school to those ZIP Codes that afford the highest potential. See Los Angeles-area Selected DMA map.

CMT would assert that you do not require more inquiries……only more of the “right” inquiries – those most likely to enroll. Remember that this geodemographic research first identifies “Who” are my most likely students, “Where” can I go geographically to find more of them, and then “How” can I most effectively reach them with target specific messages. You can’t expect to target your Inquiry List with the same message and expect it to be equally effective.

To assist the college or university with identifying those students on purchased name files and inquiry lists who are most likely to enroll, within the Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Draw Area, CMT will calculate the Historic Inquiry-to-Matriculant Yield Rate and Applicant-to-Matriculant Conversion Rate for each Target. Student records on purchased name files from College Board’s Student Search, American College Testing PLAN (ACT-PLAN), National Research Center for College & University Admissions (NRCCUA) and College Bound Selection Service (CBSS) as well as the school’s Inquiry List can be individually appended with the college/university Draw Area, Target, and Historic Inquiry-to-Matriculant Conversion Rate to identify the likelihood of the student to enroll. On purchased name files a “suppression flag” can be included, where necessary, to identify those students who come from Draw Area/PRIZM Cluster combinations that have produced ZERO matriculants in the past three/four years. Don’t encourage an inquiry from a student who will almost certainly not enroll.

U.S. Penetration Map

Draw Areas

Each analytic project is customized to meet the specific needs of each college or university. Specific emphasis may be placed on improving name purchases as well as yield, or identifying more students with little or no financial need, or identifying new high potential out-of-state markets, or targeting transfer students, or adult undergrad or graduate students. Some colleges/universities have gender imbalances and they wish to quantify their under-represented gender and more effectively target that cohort.

Some colleges and universities are concerned with retention/persistence. CMT can “Profile” a file of the school’s graduating students from the past three or four years and compare this profile to that of your enrolling students to determine which targets have above average and below average graduation or persistence rates. There may be targets that enroll at a high rate but they are not persisting, or you may not do well enrolling a target, but if they come…they stay. Don’t just recruit matriculants, recruit graduates!

To identify students/families with the greatest financial resources, CMT is often asked to append the college’s/university’s Inquiry List with a household specific household income which includes all taxable and non-taxable income that is attributable to that student address record.

College Marketing Technologies would assert that if you require 1,000 new freshmen, all you really require is 1,000 inquiries and 1,000 applicants…..they just need to be the right ones. The college/university first needs to “fish in the right ponds” or recruit in the highest potential ZIP Codes and then focus follow-up admissions efforts on those students most likely to enroll because they look most geodemographically similar to your historically enrolled students.

Primary Draw Area Market Potential Map

Secondary Draw

Area Market Potential Map

Tertiary Draw Area Market Potential Map

Rest of U.S. Market Potential Map

Selected Geographic Market Potential Map (Los Angeles)