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Digital Transformation in Education — The Role P2P Played in 2020

March 2020 and the COVID-19 pandemic changed the digital landscape for a lot of industries and organizations. Offices were vacated, restaurants closed and human connection suddenly brought to a standstill. Despite all this, there were a few silver linings etched in the face of change. The education world was forced to adapt; from admissions to alumni outreach, this past year paved the way for new technologies and strategies to emerge. One of those emerging technologies is the widespread use of Peer-to-Peer Messaging.

Before COVID, so much of the education world centered around large gatherings. Fundraising events, athletic recruitment, in-classroom learning, education are built upon human connection. In retrospect, it is unbelievable to think how an entire institution suddenly halted- essentially overnight forcing change, and forcing immediate adoption of some kind. With change comes uncertainty, and most schools simply did not have the tools to immediately pivot against a worldwide pandemic. Enter Hustle and Peer-to-Peer messaging.

In both K-12 schools and state universities (and everything in between), Hustle has helped the academic world adapt and thrive throughout the stretch of uncertainty. Stewardship and alumni relations campaigns occurred over a matter of days. Large in-person alumni reunions transformed into virtual events. And with campus visits and tours closed for the foreseeable future, many admissions teams began turning to text messaging.

Peer-to-peer messaging creates efficient and effective communication at scale. It doesn’t matter if your organization has one alumni coordinator or twenty. Hustle allows for hundreds of personalized messages to be sent in a matter of minutes. The world has become increasingly remote, therefore, any kind of outreach needs to reach its intended audience quickly- and in a manner that drives dialogue, and fosters that human connection we all seek.

It is very easy to make the argument that a lot of these pandemic changes are permanent. Taking the education world as a microcosm for the “new normal”, the historical idea of a traditional class schedule and academic calendar has become archaic. There are so many factors that determine what a successful organization in this new world looks like- and a lot of them center around budgets, endowments, and the bottom line. For example, remote learning is not only a logistical advancement but a cost-effective change as well. The corporate world has already proven this; adjusting the office presence, eliminating the 9–5 schedule, and finding success in transition.

Adaptation to a change of this magnitude will continue to prove its worth in the years to come, as we see which education institutions are able to retain and grow their student body. While the uncertainty remains, it is very clear that peer-to-peer messaging is here to stay. Join our webinar this coming Wednesday to find out how exactly Hustle can help your organization navigate this brave new world.

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