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ERIC Number: EJ984698
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0748-478X
Give Them What They Want
Sponauer, John
CURRENTS, v38 n5 p34-37 May-Jun 2012
Who we are and what we like are increasingly known pieces of information. This data, collected in aggregate and individually, is used to target marketing efforts ranging from the coupons on the grocery receipt to the online ads people see to the promotional offers sent in the mail. Even when marketing is not personally targeted, general advertising messages are intentional. This segmentation in marketing messages happens so often, so deeply, and so pervasively that people may not even notice it going on around them. Generally light years behind their peers in consumer marketing, most educational and nonprofit organizations do not yet have the assets and are not in a financial position to use the latest techniques with the same results. However, they need to catch up to the information revolution going on around them. The revolution is occurring at a time when virtually all organizations are heavily using email for outbound general communications. As a result of this shift, the alumni, friends, parents, students, faculty, and staff of the University of Connecticut receive more email than ever from UConn and other organizations in their life, increasing the risk that any one message will be lost in the email blizzard. Open rates for the UConn Foundation's e-newsletter dipped from an introductory high of about 23 percent in 2006 to about 15 percent by the public launch of the university's fundraising campaign in 2009. To combat this drop, UConn has used a strategy of message segmentation--tailored messages to distinct groups within a larger population. This has allowed educators to not only stem the decline in open rates but increase them, particularly noteworthy given the dramatic increase in the database during the same time period.
Council for Advancement and Support of Education. 1307 New York Avenue NW Suite 1000, Washington, DC 20005. Tel: 202-328-2273; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Connecticut