Learning how to get mission-appropriate families into your funnel is key to your enrollment goals. This article will teach you how to create a personalized and engaging journey for your Inquiries using automated and manual communications.
Use the links below to jump to a specific section in the article.
Parent Workflow - Inquiry Submission
Parents can 'submit' an inquiry a few different ways, which are listed below. Each avenue for Inquiry submission has its own unique set of automated communications that can be customized and branded, which are explained further down in this article.
Via a direct link to the SchoolAdmin Inquiry form on your website.
Inquiry Form Best Practices: Make sure your inquiry form has both informational questions (are you interested in financial aid, what questions do you have about the school/curriculum, etc) and interest-based questions (what academics or athletics are most exciting) so you can utilize this information for your marketing and reports. Click here for our recommendations on building a great Inquiry Form.
A best practice is to fill out an Inquiry form for a test student so you can get the parent experience and see all of the dependencies within the form (If I select "x" then I will be asked "y"). You can fill out a form by clicking on the quick action menu or '+' sign in the upper right and then select 'Fill out an Inquiry Form.'
*Public Event Calendar Link*
Via a public calendar link hosted on your website or included in an email, which links the parent/guardian to a SchoolAdmin hosted "public" calendar.
Click here to learn more about public calendars. There's several automated calendar emails that go out and that should be customized as explained further down in this article.
You can also create a custom appointment form for any of your events if you'd like to collect customized information that isn't included in our standard appointment form.
Once a parent fills out the inquiry form or signs up for an event through a public calendar link, they'll receive some automated communications that can be personalized to the family. The next section explores these touch points for each inquiry 'submission' type in more detail.
Parent Workflow - Communications
Inquiry Form Submission - Automated Communications
There's a few automated communications that go out by default during the Inquiry Process, so please make sure you review each template, and personalize/brand each of them. Please also refer to the article on email best practices.
Event Registration: If you have event registration on your Inquiry form, a parent will receive an automated confirmation email as long as the confirmation email is enabled under your calendar settings, upon submission of the Inquiry form for each event registration. In addition, they may receive a reminder email if one is set within the calendar settings.
Form Submission: Upon form submission, the parent/guardian will see the 'Inquiry Thank You' landing page. This is located within Settings-->Portal-->Parent Portal Content-->Inquiry Thank You. Click here for content recommendations and best practices.
Form Submission: Upon form submission, the parent/guardian will also receive an automated 'Inquiry Thank You' email, if this is enabled under Communication Setup. The email template is located within Settings-->Communications-->Email Templates-->System Emails. Click here to learn more. Make sure you customize this email with images, warm and friendly messaging, and anything that's 'you'nique to your brand.
Automated Communications (SchoolAdmin PRO): For schools using our PRO plan, you can utilize our Automated Communication Plans feature to setup different triggers for an engagement cadence. This is useful for sending personalized emails for financial aid families, interest based communications, boarding vs day communications, event attendance thank you emails, etc. These are located within Settings-->Communication-->Automated Communication Plans-->Inquiry tab. Click here for best practices on defining your communication plans. Next, click here for Inquiry Process examples and setup instructions. Reach out to our Support team if you'd like assistance in setting up the rules and criteria.
Inquiry Form Submission - Additional Communications (Automated and Manual)
Create a communication plan/map. Define who your target audience is, who each message is coming from, and what criteria is needed for the communication to be sent. If you're a team of one or of many, it's important that everyone is included in the process. Click here for best practices on creating a communication plan, even if you don't have PRO to automate custom messages.
Once you have your communication plan created, you'll want to create customized email templates for each within Settings-->Communications-->Email Templates-->Custom Emails. Click here for email best practices.
A list of Inquiry email examples is included in our admissions automated communications article. Please note, these emails can also be sent manually and in bulk to families using filter options within the Admissions tab-->Inquiries or within a custom search that's built with any criteria you need. You can also send emails to individual contacts through the Inquiry Record, using the Communicate menu.
Calendar and Event Communications
Inquiry Submission via a Public Calendar - Automated Communications
When families sign up for an event through a public calendar link, they'll pick a time-slot and fill out the appointment form. Please note, we provide a standard appointment form for all calendars by default, but if you'd like to ask for additional information, you can build a custom appointment form. If you need help, please work with our Support team.
IMPORTANT: Event registration through a public calendar will not display the Inquiry Landing Page, nor will it send the Inquiry Thank You email. These two communications are specific to an Inquiry Form that's submitted by a parent only. (Admin's can fill out Inquiry forms on behalf of families, but both of these communications will not be shown or sent to the Admin or to the parent).
Each event has up to 3 automated email templates you can customize and send, which are located within the Calendar Settings of the event you're managing. First you'll click on the Scheduling tab-->Calendars-->Select the calendar name-->Calendar Settings button in the upper right-->Edit Settings. You can learn more about each template listed below within the hyperlinked article above. Each template can be toggled on or off and personalized with your brand.
Confirmation Email - sent automatically upon registration submission.
Reminder Email - sent "x" number of days prior to the event at 4am Central. Exception: If an appointment is booked less than 24 hours before the reminder email is set to go out at 4 AM, the reminder email will not be sent, but the confirmation email will be sent.
Cancellation Email - sent upon cancellation of a registered parent/guardian for an event.
If you'd like to provide custom web links for virtual events, click here to learn more.
Admin Submitted Inquiry - Communications
If you or another team member submits an Inquiry form via the quick action menu, noted by the + sign in the upper right by your username, the Inquiry Thank You page will not display and the automated Inquiry Thank you email will not be sent to the parent/guardian.
If you register the parent for any events on the Inquiry form, or from the checklist once the records are created, the parent will receive all automated calendar emails that are turned on for that event.
If you have any automated communication plans setup, these will also be triggered once you submit the Inquiry form.
If you'd like to send an 'Inquiry Thank You' follow-up email to send the parent/guardian some follow-up information, you can send one manually via the contact record of the Inquiry.
Admin Workflow - New Inquiry Notifications and Management
The timing of your follow-up to a new Inquiry is critical to the nurturing process. To ensure you don't miss any new inquiries, you can set automated email notifications. Within your username menu in the upper right of your set, select 'User Notifications.' Within this page, you can turn on the 'Inquiry received from parent' email which can also be customized to include additional fields. You can also turn on email notifications for each event registration within the 'Immediate Calendar Notifications' section.