Performance-based marketing is an industry powered by results-driving trends. But driving results requires adhering to regulatory compliance best practices regardless of your brand or vertical. For profit education is no different. Recently, the for profit education industry has been levied with Federal Trade Commission (FTC) regulations aimed at protecting consumers – potential students – from investing in programs that fail to promote career advancement. Keeping up to date on these legislative changes and subsequent updates could be difficult for online colleges and universities. By leveraging performance-based expertise, these programs can not only stay informed of new rules moving forward, they can more efficiently and effectively target prospects to their particular programs.
In order for most for-profit and certificate programs to qualify for federal aid, they must demonstrate that they prepare students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation. Proving one of these three key metrics is essential to continue to receive funding:
1 – At least 35 percent of former students are repaying their loans
2 – The estimated annual loan payment of a typical graduate doesn't exceed 30 percent of his/her salary
3 – The projected yearly loan payment of a standard graduate doesn't exceed 12 percent of his/her total earnings
Ultimately, failure to comply will result in the program losing eligibility for at least three years. Depending on the size of the program, this could be irrevocably harmful to the online institution. But for .edu programs utilizing an online performance marketing agency with a commitment to best practices, advanced technology and vertical expertise, they can be assured that their campaigns will run smoothly and drive leads without FTC interference.
To ensure that they choose the best network to promote their school, online colleges and universities should do their homework. The right network should be adept at creating and hosting education portals and micro-sites. It should take advantage of proprietary technology and proper lead generation and management capabilities. They should make sure the performance marketing agency under consideration has access to professionals in search, social, display, email marketing and customer relationship management. The agency should also be accustomed to driving results for online education campaigns, which means they understand the ins and outs of the FTC. It makes sense to ask to see potential ad placements before finalizing a partnership.
FTC regulations placed on the online education industry can complicate customer acquisition strategies, especially in an already competitive marketplace. Performance marketing can help online colleges and universities stay on course with rules updates and changes while enabling them to continue delivering the right students to their programs.