Understanding Bait and Switch Advertising in the EDU Sector
Knowing where and how your school appears is virtually a full-time job in and of itself in the vast community of online marketing. Whether or not your school contracts with a third-party vendor for the purpose of lead generation and online presence, the unauthorized use of your brand is a consistent problem.
Many schools are typically unaware of the extent of their brands’ presence on third-party websites and lead forms. Even institutions that do not buy leads still exist on the web and lead forms are readily available when paired with certain key terms. Unauthorized use of your school name allows room for the possibility of bait and switch techniques.
You might ask yourself:
- We don’t work with this website, so how heavily is it actually trafficked?
- How many potential students per month or per year are utilizing the lead form found on this page?
- Since we don’t purchase online leads, who receives this information?
- What is done with lead information after it is submitted by the prospective student?
Deceptive advertising is a growing problem in the EDU space, and it is important to stay ahead of the game. A prospective student’s information in the hands of someone else or a competitor is of no use to you and can serve as a direct cut to your company’s revenue.
In order to prevent the possibility of baiting and switching of your brand, it is important to employ routine monitoring to identify how and where your school is being advertised. If you buy leads from online vendors, confirm that sites you find are part of their affiliate networks and that they’re meeting compliance regulations.