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Dallas Baptist University: Empowering Enrollment with Pardot

Founded in 1898, Dallas Baptist University (DBU) offers a variety of educational opportunities for individuals of all ages and academic backgrounds.  These include degree programs at the undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral levels, as well as continuing education and certificate programs.  In order to help increase enrollment rates and create more personalized journeys for their prospective students, DBU turned to Cloud for Good for a strategic partnership to help create a best-in-breed marketing automation system, designed to help funnel prospective students through DBU’s recruitment and application process. 

Evolving Campus Technology with Salesforce

“We chose Salesforce because we valued the Student 360 model and how it can be adopted and utilized for the entirety of a student’s life cycle,” said DBU Director of Strategic Initiatives Weston Schubert on the institution’s technology goals.   

According to Schubert, the school has used the same Student Information System (SIS) for over 20 years to meet recruitment and admissions needs.  There were a host of different data challenges as a result, including a lack of functionality needed to support enrollment initiatives.  “We’ve known for many years that to grow our enrollment, we needed a CRM.  Utilizing an existing instance of the Education Data Architecture and now, with this engagement with Cloud for Good, Pardot has enabled us to modernize our recruitment strategy and provided greater capabilities for marketing initiatives,” continued Schubert.    

Unifying a Connected Campus with Pardot

Focusing on Pardot, Cloud for Good and DBU set out to reimagine the way DBU managed their marketing communication processes. Pardot has played a huge role in the university’s increased success in recruiting and admissions.  Multi-channel interactions across dynamic emails and text messages help break down communication barriers between the institution and prospective students while providing invaluable data and metrics to help inform recruiting initiatives.     

The interactive processes enabled by Pardot’s dynamic emails and intuitive lead scoring allows prospective students greater control on how they are identified by the university (interested, applying, enrolling, etc.), at the same time the solution provides the admissions team with a tremendous amount of reliable data to inform decisions and create personalized student experiences with dynamic content. 

Schubert elaborates, “Pardot is an incredible marketing automation tool due to the ability to collect numerous data points associated to a given prospect. We are now able to draw new correlations and develop more transactional and personalized marketing content due to the various data points which Cloud for Good has helped to bring into the Pardot system. Furthermore, Pardot provides metrics associated to the actual engagement of prospects, which will help our campus determine how to more effectively communicate to our perspective student audience.” 

Dr. Matt Murrah serves as Vice President for Financial Affairs and remarked, “Pardot has enabled us to automate many functions of our recruiting process, freeing up our recruiters to spend more time in one-on-one conversations with prospective students.  It has also allowed us much greater insight into the outcomes of our communications with prospective students so that we can continue to hone our recruiting strategy.”  That strategy benefits from Pardot’s ability to customize student journeys across DBU’s four departments (Undergraduate, Professional Studies, Graduate, International Prospects) through automated form-based triggers.   

Each department features their own customizations in Pardot, but the strategy behind moving prospective students through an intentional pipeline rings true across departments.  Once a student has been identified, they are taken through lead, inquiry, and application email journeys, culminating with an accepted and admitted student. 

How Better Communication Led to Bigger Results

Before Pardot, this communication was decentralized, and all departments siloed.  Marketing endeavors lacked what Schubert called a “holistic approach,” but now DBU operates with a single source of truth unifying university efforts across departments.  This connects back to the Student 360 approach Schubert and DBU as a whole were attracted to when considering a move to Pardot.  Any employee can now look at a specific contact record within Salesforce and see all communication that has occurred with the student, their activity, when they submitted an inquiry form, etc.  Seeing the entire lifecycle of a perspective student has removed data hurdles for the university. 

DBU has invested in creating a scalable, strategic marketing automation solution and has continued to engage with Cloud for Good with digital managed services to bolster that investment.  “DBU very strongly values our partnership with Cloud for Good and we have been so impressed by their digital services,” said Schubert in closing.  Together, we’re able to dive into KPIs and tweak our approach along the way for the best possible recruitment and admissions results.  Add in the fact that DBU is continuing to bring Salesforce across campus and looking to add Advancement communications, and it’s clear DBU will be a continued example of Salesforce success in the higher education space for years to come. 

For more information on Dallas Baptist University, visit their website at

Written by Blake Becker

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