Update: November 19, 2022 Jesse Stein Jesse has founded, operated and sold multiple Internet-related ventures over the last 20 years. As the founder of Audience.co, he is passionate about combining digital excellence with direct handwritten mail to build lasting customer relationships.

4 Everlasting College Recruiting Triggers for Handwritten Notes [Free Templates]

handwritten notes for college recruiting

As the college admissions process becomes more and more competitive, colleges are looking for ways to improve their yield rates- the percentage of students who accept an offer of admission. 

One way that colleges are doing this is by increasing their efforts to recruit students. Recruiting involves contacting prospective students and encouraging them to apply or visit the campus. It can also involve offering scholarships or financial aid, hosting special events, or providing personalized information about the college. 

By making a targeted effort to reach out to potential students, colleges are hoping to increase their pool of applicants and ultimately improve their yield rate. 

While recruiting may require some additional effort on the part of the admissions office, it can be a successful way to attract qualified students to the college.

Relationship Marketing

Relationship Marketing in College Recruiting

Relationship marketing is a strategy that focuses on building strong, long-term relationships with current and potential students. The goal of relationship marketing is to create mutually beneficial relationships in which both parties feel they are getting value from the relationship. 

This can be achieved through activities such as regular communication, providing high-quality services and education, and offering fair pricing. By cultivating such relationships, colleges can create loyal students. 

In addition, strong relationships can help colleges weather tough times by providing a stable source of income. For these reasons, relationship marketing is an important part of any college marketing strategy.

Types of Relationship Marketing

Types of Relationship Marketing

Basic Marketing

College/student partnerships are the heart of relationship marketing. Relationship marketing is committed to creating a connection characterized by mutual benefits where both parties feel they are gaining something from the relationship. 

You can do this by keeping in touch, delivering top-quality services and education, and charging competitive prices.

Colleges can develop loyal patrons by cultivating these relationships. These students are less likely to switch to another school if these relationships exist. Colleges can also weather tough times by relying on strong relationships for income. The importance of relationship marketing cannot be overstated.

Reactive Marketing

If a student makes a purchase, you may encourage them to give feedback or leave comments. This is called reactive relationship marketing. For college recruiting, you could send a handwritten note to request a review online.

Accountable Marketing

Students who have questions or concerns are encouraged to reach out if they are engaged in accountable relationship marketing. To find out if there are any problems with an application, it could be helpful to follow up with a handwritten note.

Proactive Marketing

Your performance is assessed with the help of current and former students. Proactive relationship marketing consists of collecting feedback through handwritten notes, and other sources, and actively implementing it to enhance future college performance.

Partnership Marketing

Partnership marketing is all about collaboration. Maybe you send a handwritten note to college recruiters at a nearby college. They are more familiar with the area where your applicant is looking to study. Thus improving student satisfaction and experience.

Types of Handwritten Notes

Types of Handwritten Notes

Handwritten notes are among the most essential tools in college marketing because they show just how dedicated you’re to each student and applicant. Whether you’re an individual just starting, or the Dean of a prestigious college, there’s always a time and place for personal contact. 

There are multiple types of handwritten notes for college recruiting you might use, and not all are created equal. 

Printed Notes That Look Like Human Writing

If you have typed up an electronic note, you can pick a font that’s similar to human writing. People may prefer a font like Rumi, Calorie, or Victor, for example. The cursive writing alone gives the postcards the appearance that they were handwritten. However, the characters are exactly the same; there are no variations whatsoever, which makes writing by hand nearly impossible. 

Printed Signatures on Typed Notes

Here, the entire note is typed and printed, but instead of typing a signature, the note is “signed” with a cursive font. Occasionally, colleges will even pass off digital representations of signatures as “signed,” but they are not as convincing as the real thing. 

Handwritten Notes Using Artificial Intelligence

In this form of handwritten marketing, a robot drives a pen to create a note that appears to be handwritten. The note appears 100 percent authentic because of variations and small errors. 

If you’ve asked yourself, “is it better to type or handwrite notes?”, then you should go with handwritten notes for college recruiting.

Why are Handwritten Notes Effective?

Why are Handwritten Notes For College Recruiting so Effective?

There’s just something about receiving a handwritten note in the mail that makes you feel special. A handwritten note is personal and shows that the sender took the time to sit down and write a message just for you. It feels like they truly care about you and your well-being.

Handwritten notes are also very effective college recruiting tools. When you receive a handwritten note, it catches your attention and makes you want to read it. You’re more apt to keep a handwritten note than an email or text, so it’s more likely to be seen by others. And when others see your handwritten note, they’ll be more likely to remember your college.

Handwritten Notes Are More Often Opened and Read 

Handwritten mail has an open rate of up to 99%. The appeal of these pieces is that it looks like the college spent time writing a personalized message, handwriting the address on the envelope, and stamping the envelope before dropping it in the mail. Handwritten cards evoke a nostalgic feeling and a feeling of reciprocity.

Decision-Makers Get Their Hands on Handwritten Envelopes

Typically, decision-makers are busy, so their mail often goes through several sorts before getting to their hands. Direct mail marketing pieces are often thrown into the trash with the rest of the junk mail. A handwritten envelope is quite another matter. It’s the sorters’ job to sort personal messages even if they don’t know who sent them. So people receive handwritten notes that make it to decision-makers, while spam is discarded without ever being read.

Human Contact is Needed When Mailboxes are Empty

When your mailbox used to be clogged with junk mail, you hated it. Back in the day, there was always a community college or student loan flyer in your mailbox, but today most mailboxes are empty. People are starving for human contact. 

Handwritten notes you hold in your hand are the ones you’re most likely to remember. According to a Gallup poll, 94 percent of people enjoy receiving letters or postcards in the mail. According to the study, even 87 percent of millennials prefer handwritten notes to text messages. Consider writing handwritten letters when recruiting college students to establish a stronger connection.

Handwritten Notes are Often Saved

This fact alone justifies the price of handwritten notes. Furthermore, the notes are displayed publicly. When you use handwritten notes for your college recruiting campaign, you can extend your reach to multiple people per note. 

Consider this. Have you ever gotten a handwritten note from family or friends? Do you keep them? You may have received a note from someone and decided to leave it in the open for other people to see (or so that you could read it whenever you walked by). Putting this same concept to work in your college recruiting campaign is possible with a handwritten note.

Create a Culture of Trust and Value 

Last but not least, you can build authenticity, trust and value through the use of handwritten notes for college recruiting. It’s the feeling of knowing that someone was thinking about you as they wrote the note that makes handwritten notes memorable. 

They give your clients a sense that you care about them – they are a great way to start a relationship. In this way, you can establish a foundation for future interactions with your applicants and students, since they know you value them highly.

Choosing a Handwritten Notes Service

What to Look for in a Handwritten Notes Service

For college recruiting, you need to find the best handwritten notes service. Here are a few key factors to consider.

  • Let’s start at the beginning. What’s the track record of your company for completing projects on time? Are they using the best equipment? Do they offer customization? What about their communication? 
  • Exceptional materials. It’s important that high-quality materials be used. Hand-addressed envelopes and thick cards have something luxurious about them. Printed envelopes or thin, flimsy postcards communicate that they are not authentic. The price quoted for handwritten notes needs to include the cost of quality materials.
  • Optional sizes. Consider the sizes available for the handwritten notes service. There are times when you may wish to send a small note and other times, a larger card. Having the ability to customize the size is important. 
  • Choices of handwriting. How many handwriting options does the service offer? Do you have a choice of fonts? Having the ability to customize the writing to meet your needs – even if it means having your handwriting turned into a special font – is vital. This service should be able to handle your handwriting needs if you want to send a bunch of notes.
  • Personalization. What options are available for personalizing the note? Is it possible to add drawings and doodles? Could you add a QR code that leads to a customized landing page? The more customized the note, the greater the impact.
  • Forever stamp. Are Forever stamps used by the service? There’s greater effectiveness in using Forever stamps than printed postage every day of the week because a real individual applies the stamp.
  • Quick turn-around time. What are the turnaround times for your notes? You and your students will benefit from faster service, without sacrificing quality. 
  • Scaling options. Are you able to scale up or down your services when needed? Your handwritten notes may need to grow as your college recruiting campaign grows. Or, depending on the season, you may need to scale back occasionally. Find a service that’s accommodating and flexible. One that can meet your changing needs.
  • Nothing to hide. In terms of the price of handwritten notes, you want a transparent service. If there are any hidden charges, like postage, processing, or handling, you don’t want to be caught by surprise. Staying on budget becomes difficult.
  • Premium services. Can you upgrade to premium services? Which premium services are available? You should be aware of the options available to you before upgrading.
  • Free app. How about a mobile app for free? This would simplify the process. By doing so, you can place orders while on the move.
  • Include collateral. Gift certificates, gift cards, coupons, candles – can you add something personal and special with a handwritten note?
  • Account manager. Does the company provide you with a personal account manager to assist you with the process of sending handwritten notes? Choosing the right size, font style, color scheme, and shipping options can be easily accomplished with the assistance of your account manager.

A professional can assist you with the creation of a strong handwritten college recruiting campaign that will appeal to college students.

Gaining Traction With Handwritten Marketing

Tips for Gaining the Best Traction with Handwritten Marketing

Handwritten marketing has a number of advantages; however, if you want to use your handwritten notes to get the most traction with college recruiting, you have to keep in mind several factors.

Personalize the Note

Sending a note that starts with something like, “Dear High School Senior,” immediately tells the reader that thousands of that same note were sent to students. However, starting the conversation with, “Hey Jake,” is much more effective. Also, don’t address the recipient by first and last name, that too looks spammy.

Send Multiple Notes if They Don’t Respond

According to HubSpot, on average you have to “touch” a person eight times before the sale is made. The same goes for handwritten notes and college recruiting. Stick it out for the long haul as most colleges will stop after two or three touches.

Don’t Try to Close a Deal With Every Note

In spite of your desire to get each individual to apply, not every note should ask for an application. It’s all about building relationships. At some point, you may want to convert the recipient into a student; however, you should probably not attempt to do so on the first note. Show a genuine interest in the recipient’s needs. Don’t make the mistake of trying to close the deal without knowing them first.

Give Them a Way to Get in Touch 

People love receiving handwritten notes, but that doesn’t mean they’ll want to talk to you right away. Make sure prospective students know how to reach you if they decide to take the plunge.

Always Include a QR Code 

QR codes are great for opening websites at the click of a button because the recipient just scans the code with their phone camera. The URL is not difficult to read and the reader won’t make mistakes if they type it in. Using QR codes, you can schedule appointments, browse available majors, or visit custom landing pages.

Traction is what starts the flywheel turning. Remember, once the flywheel gets up to speed, it will turn automatically. Basically, the more traction you have with prospective students, the more applications you’ll receive.

College Recruiting Note Triggers

College Recruiting Triggers for Handwritten Notes

What types of triggers can you set up when using handwritten notes for college recruiting? You can use these notes throughout the year.

College Recruiting at the End of Junior Year

Junior year of high school is an important time for college recruitment. Some colleges will send handwritten notes to prospective students to help recruit them. It’s essential that these notes are well-written and articulate the unique aspects of the college. The notes should highlight the academic opportunities available at the college, as well as the extracurricular activities and social life. 

In addition, the notes should emphasize the benefits of attending the college, such as small class sizes and personal attention from professors. By taking the time to write personalized notes, colleges can show that they are interested in attracting talented and dedicated students. As a result, handwritten notes can be an effective tool in the college recruiting process.

College Recruiting and High School Graduation 

When it comes to making the big decision of which college to attend, sometimes it can be helpful to hear directly from students who have already been through the process. This is why many colleges make an effort to reach out to high school graduates with personal, handwritten notes from current students and alumni. 

By hearing first-hand accounts of what makes a particular college special, prospective students can get a better sense of whether or not the school is the right fit for them. And when those accounts come from some of the most successful people in their field, it can be hard to ignore. For instance, when former NFL player and Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker speaks about his experience attending the University of Georgia, people tend to listen.

College Appreciation and the Dean’s List

A handwritten note from a college representative is a great way to show that you’re interested in a student and that you’ve been paying attention to their achievements. A simple “Congratulations on making the dean’s list!” would suffice, but you could also add a personal touch by mentioning something about the student’s academic interests or future plans. Either way, a handwritten note is sure to be appreciated by any college student who’s been working hard to succeed.

College Appreciation After Graduation

Graduating college is a momentous occasion. For many students, it marks the end of a long and challenging journey. It’s also a time of great excitement and anticipation, as graduates look forward to beginning the next phase of their lives. As such, it’s important for colleges to offer words of encouragement and congratulations to their graduating students. 

A handwritten note from a college president or dean is a wonderful way to show students their hard work has been noticed and appreciated. In addition, these notes can serve as a reminder that the college is always there to support its graduates, whether they are starting their careers or furthering their education. By taking the time to send handwritten notes, colleges can show their students they are genuinely invested in their success.

Sample Templates

Sample Templates – Handwritten Notes for College Recruiting

For college recruiters, handwritten notes can be a powerful way to connect with potential students. They allow recruiters to express their interest in a student’s academic and extracurricular achievements, and they give students a glimpse of the person behind the recruitment process. 

Handwritten notes also convey a sense of urgency that can be motivating for students who are making decisions about their future. In an age where technology dominates our lives, handwritten notes remind us that there’s still value in a personal connection.

Open the Conversation About College

Dear [High School Junior],

We’re writing to let you know that we’re interested in recruiting you to join our college team. [College] is a great place to continue your education and hone your skills in [sport/activity]. Our team has a long tradition of success, and we believe you have the potential to be a key contributor.

We hope you will give serious consideration to joining our college family. If you have any questions or would like to discuss this further, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [High School Junior],

I’m writing to introduce myself and my college. [name of college] is a leading institution for [type of students you’re looking for]. We’re looking for students who are [ qualities you’re looking for in students].

If you’re interested in learning more about [name of college], please visit our website or contact our admissions office. We’d be happy to provide more information about our programs and answer any questions you may have.

Thank you for your time, and we hope to hear from you soon.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [High School Junior],

We are excited to tell you about [name of college]. We think you’ll be a great fit for our school! Here’s what we have to offer: 

[Insert information about college’s academics, campus life, student organizations, etc.] 

We encourage you to visit our campus and see for yourself what makes us special. In the meantime, please contact us if you have any questions. We hope to hear from you soon! 

Sincerely, 

[Your Name]

Continue the Conversation About College

Dear [High School Graduate],

Congratulations on your upcoming graduation! This is an exciting time in your life, and we want to reassure you that we’ll be there every step of the way. The college transition can be daunting, but we’re here to make it as smooth as possible. Below are some tips for getting started:

– First, schedule a campus tour. 

– Second, meet with an academic advisor. 

– Third, take advantage of Orientation week. 

We know college can be a big adjustment, but we’ve got your back! We hope to see you on campus soon!

Sincerely, 

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [High School Graduate],

As you begin your journey into adulthood, college will be an important step along the way. But with so many colleges out there, it can be tough to know where to start your search. That’s why we’re excited to tell you about our school. 

Here at [name of college], we offer a world-class education that will help you prepare for success in whatever field you choose. We have outstanding faculty, small class sizes, and a supportive community ready to make you feel right at home. Plus, our location in [city] is unbeatable. 

So if you’re looking for a college that will give you the best possible chance of success, look no further than [name of college]. We can’t wait to see what you’ll achieve here.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [High School Graduate],

Now that you’ve graduated from high school, it’s time to start thinking about college. And we believe that [name of college] is the perfect place for you to continue your education. Here’s why:

[name of college] has a world-class faculty who are passionate about teaching and committed to helping their students succeed. We offer a wide range of degree programs that will allow you to pursue your interests and develop your skills. And our campus is located in one of the most beautiful and vibrant cities in the country.

We would be honored to have you join us as a student at [name of college]. If you have any questions about our programs or the admissions process, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [High School Graduate],

As you prepare to take the next step in your education, we wanted to reach out and let you know we would be interested in having you join the [name of college] community. We believe you’d thrive here and contribute to the richness of campus life.

We offer a supportive and inclusive environment where students are challenged academically and personally. Our faculty are passionate about teaching and committed to helping students reach their full potential. Outside of the classroom, there are numerous opportunities for students to get involved in extracurricular activities, including sports, clubs, and volunteer work.

We hope you will give serious consideration to joining us for the next stage of your education. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about our college, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Handwritten notes for colleges don’t stop at recruiting purposes. There are tons of reasons to use handwritten notes.

Congratulate a Student for Making the Dean’s List

Dear [Dean’s List Recipient],

Congratulations on being named to the dean’s list! This is a prestigious achievement that demonstrates your dedication to academic excellence. At [name of college], we’re committed to providing our students with the best possible education. Our faculty and staff are committed to helping our students succeed. We are proud of your accomplishment and look forward to seeing great things from you in the future. Keep up the good work!

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [Dean’s List Recipient],

Congratulations on making the dean’s list! This is a significant achievement that demonstrates your dedication to academics. Your hard work is paying off, and we are proud of your accomplishments.

Making the dean’s list is an impressive feat, but it’s only the beginning. We know you have the potential to achieve even more in your academic career. We encourage you to set your sights high and continue working hard to reach your goals. We’re confident you have what it takes to be a successful student, and we look forward to seeing great things from you in the future.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [Dean’s List Recipient],

Congratulations on making the dean’s list! This is a great accomplishment and we’re proud of your hard work. This distinction is reserved for students who have demonstrated excellence in their academic pursuits. As a member of the dean’s list, you’re among the top students at [name of college]. We encourage you to continue working hard and to set your sights high. We’re confident you have a bright future ahead of you. Thank you for representing our college in a positive way. Keep up the good work!

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Write a Handwritten Note of Congratulations

Dear [College Graduate],

As you prepare to leave college and enter the next phase of your life, we wanted to take a moment to congratulate you on all your hard work. You’ve accomplished so much in these past few years, and we know you’re going to continue to achieve great things. We’ll miss having you on campus, but we’re excited to see what the future holds for you. Best of luck in all your future endeavors!

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [College Graduate],

Congratulations on your graduation! This is a huge accomplishment and you should be proud of all that you’ve accomplished. We know you’re going to do great things in the future and we’re excited to see what you’ll achieve. We want to thank you for being part of our [name of college] community and we wish you all the best in your future endeavors. Stay in touch and let us know how you’re doing!

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

__________

Dear [College Graduate],

As you leave college and begin your journey into the working world, there are a few things to keep in mind. 

First and foremost, don’t forget what you learned at [name of college]. The knowledge you acquired over the past few years will come in handy more often than you realize. 

Secondly, don’t be afraid to network. The connections you make now could come in handy down the road. 

Finally, don’t forget to stay positive and optimistic. The working world can be tough, but if you keep your head up and stay focused on your goals, you’ll be just fine. 

Congratulations on graduating college! Best of luck in everything you do.

Sincerely,

[Your Name]

Bottom Line

Get the Most out of Handwritten Marketing

You can set yourself apart from other college recruiters with handwritten notes, even though the college recruitment industry is competitive. An email or text message doesn’t have the same effect on people as a handwritten note. Make yourself unique by experimenting with new ways to communicate. 

You can save time on your handwritten notes for college recruiters if you know how to use customized, handwritten services, especially those that utilize advanced artificial intelligence. Meanwhile, you’re still building those solid, personal relationships you need with potential candidates or anyone else involved in the process. A college recruiter needs to be honest, raw, and transparent when communicating with people today.