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CRM Software for Schools: Build Connections with 1 Platform
Connor Gleason

Working in a busy school environment, you know that keeping up with students and their families using manual processes is exhausting, to say the least. From sending out carefully timed emails to tracking forms and applications, these seemingly never-ending tasks can consume a significant chunk of your workday (and your energy).

Worse, it can detract from your ability to build genuine connections with students and families.

Too often, despite your best efforts, critical information about an applicant disappears during its journey from one department to the next, or a parent misses a form deadline, which can slow your timeline and frustrate everyone involved.

As schools become more reliant on digital communication tools, the need for a reliable, all-in-one platform will only continue to grow.

Luckily, there’s a platform that automates many of these processes, allowing you to streamline your website, communications, enrollment, and marketing processes, taking the weight off your shoulders and freeing up time for crucial relationship-building efforts.

That’s precisely what a Community Relationship Management (CRM) platform can do for your team. But what, exactly, is a CRM, and what can it do for your school?

They’re all good questions and the first step toward strengthening community relationships with your school.

What’s a CRM Platform for Schools?

A CRM platform is often called a “customer” relationship management platform, but here at Finalsite, we’re focused on building stronger school communities. Our Community Relationship Management platform is the first of its kind for K-12 schools, serving as an all-in-one solution for websites, communications, mobile apps, enrollment, and marketing services.

Finalsite Fly wheel

With all of the smart tools you need to thrive, our Community Relationship Management platform makes it easier than ever to attract students, engage families, and build community.

What Can a CRM Do for Schools?

School Website Management

A well-managed school website is a central hub for all community interactions. A powerful content management system like Finalsite Composer allows schools to create and maintain engaging, user-friendly websites that tell your school’s story.

With our award-winning designs and easy-to-use CMS, you'll reach more families, increase engagement, save time, and create a strong online presence that keeps your school community informed and connected.

Communication Tools

Communications are the backbone of keeping your community involved. From personalized branded emails and newsletters to email automation and mass notifications, reach your community in just a few clicks from one trusted platform. Schools can streamline their messaging, update families with important information, and bridge the gap between the school and its stakeholders.

Plus, with detailed analytics, you know you’ll send the right messages at the right time to the right audience, allowing you to focus on deeper-level engagement with families.

Personalized Mobile Apps

Bring the latest updates and important announcements to your community’s fingertips with a branded mobile app. Integrated with your school’s CRM, these apps allow parents and staff to communicate in real-time, stay informed about school events with personalized news, calendars, and directories, and access important documents while on the go.

Streamline Enrollment Management

As a critical component of your school’s enrollment management, CRMs streamline the application process, track applicant status, and manage enrollment communications. With Finalsite Enrollment’s user-friendly admissions, enrollment, and tuition and billing management software, you'll engage prospects, enroll students, and retain families more easily than ever.

Marketing Services to Find and Engage New Audiences

With integrated marketing services led by in-house experts, all these CRM tools come together to help target specific demographics, personalize marketing messages, and track the success of your initiatives.

And with decades of experience in SEO, digital advertising, and marketing strategy, our team is ready to help plan, execute, and analyze your marketing campaigns so you can attract and retain students more effectively than ever.

Building Meaningful Relationships: The Power of One Platform

1. Centralizing Communications for Consistency and Clarity

In essence, managing your school’s marketing and communications comes down to managing relationships. Every email, inquiry, social media post, and website update is a chance to build a relationship between your school and its families.

Having all communication tools within one, branded platform ensures that your messaging is streamlined and tailored for each channel.

“Thanks to the Finalsite products, we have a system to capture and then nurture leads through popup forms, the enrollment management system, Workflow campaigns, and even a newsletter using Finalsite’s publication module,” shared Barbara Kennedy, director of external affairs at Baylor School.

“This is giving us the data that we need, and in return, we can see exactly how our efforts are helping attract and enroll new families. Having their expertise and perspective in our toolbox took our results to a whole new level.” 

2. Personalized Engagement Through Data Integration

A unified CRM platform allows schools to integrate all their data, from enrollment records to communication logs, to follow contacts throughout their entire time at your school. This comprehensive view of each contact enables the personalization that families want and expect.

That rings true for Dianne Dunning-Gil, St. Joseph’s Academy’s director of enrollment. “What we’re seeing from our families is the expectation that we really understand their child,” she said. “Even in that first engagement, there needs to be the expectation that communications are customized to what they're looking for. From what’s collected in an inquiry form to every phone call — all of those interactions need to be cultivating a very personalized experience.”

One of the key benefits of having all marketing and communication tools within one platform is the ability to measure and analyze their effectiveness. Schools can take a data-driven approach and track engagement metrics to measure campaign performance, identify opportunities, and meet their families' expectations.

3. Streamlining Processes for Efficiency

When marketing and communications are managed within one platform, it streamlines and automates routine tasks like sending email reminders or building newsletters from scratch. With the time saved, your office can focus on more meaningful family interactions.

Szilvi Lazar, director of advancement and admissions at the International Christian School of Budapest, knows that streamlined processes also mean faster response times and more proactive communication.

“With a 1-person admission office, having a system that allows automation for every step of the way, including automated emails based on completed steps in the process, automated email reminders, and branded, personalized templates for mass emailing that pull parent and applicant info into your communication, it is a game changer,” Lazar said. ”It saves so much time and produces prompt, personalized, consistent, and professional communication every time.”

4. Enhancing Collaboration Among Departments

A single platform for managing marketing and communications supports more collaboration among school staff, too. When admission and marketing offices can access the same information and tools, it's easier to coordinate efforts and ensure that all departments are aligned.

This unified approach prevents duplicated efforts and ensures that families receive cohesive, well-coordinated communication day after day. “The best part about the Finalsite Platform is that it has all the tools I need to build dynamic website pages,” shared Tove Tupper, director of communications at Highline Public Schools. “The simplicity of the software has cut the amount of time the school web editors have to spend, and the site looks more seamless.”

5. Building Stronger Community Connections

Effective school marketing and communication are about building a community—much more than just sharing information. A CRM for K-12 education provides the framework for community-building activities, sharing news, organizing and managing volunteer opportunities, and encouraging parent and alumni involvement. By making it easy to manage and promote these activities, your school can strengthen the sense of community.

Key Takeaway

Managing schools is about managing relationships. By consolidating your website, communications, enrollment, and marketing efforts within one platform, your school can ensure consistent, personalized, and efficient communication that benefits both staff and families. This relationship-focused approach not only simplifies your processes but also enhances the overall experience of your families and leads to stronger, more positive relationships within your school community.

Not sure where to start? Finalsite is here to help! Click here to Get Started.


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