South Texas College started working with Mainstay in April 2019. They wanted to help students register for classes and make it to their first day. Their application yield, the number of applicants who register for classes, was only 7% and their goal was to increase it to 10%.
STC typically receives a sizeable number of inquiries, however many often don’t complete (or even begin) an application. They aimed to use an AI-powered chatbot named Jerry (after their mascot, Jerry the Jaguar) to target summer 2019 and fall 2019 inquiries (students who asked for information) to encourage them to complete an application and enroll in classes.
Using Jerry, the staff at South Texas was able to segment communications to students based on where they were in the inquiry-to-application process. For example, to make sure students received information tailored to their questions and needs, this script was sent to students who submitted an inquiry but not yet an application:
After implementing and using their chatbot over this time period, STC found that 21.2% of summer 2019 inquiries and 34.2% of Fall 2019 inquiries completed an application!
South Texas College also managed to increase their application yield, which was their primary goal, ultimately getting more students to register for classes.
Students who completed their application but hadn’t registered yet received this helpful nudge:
Application yield increased from 7% to 13.7% for summer 2019 inquiries and from 7% to 22.2% for fall 2019 inquiries — that’s a 217% increase! (Yes, you read that right!)
While there were many other efforts going on to increase yield, the only stark difference from previous years was adding the chatbot.