In looking at the power of brand communication versus word of mouth and shared experiences of clients, for-profit colleges offer an interesting case study. Over the past year, I have read a lot about the decline of Corinthian Colleges, and now Everest College. Multiple articles have been written and shared regarding the manipulative tactics employed by these so-called “career colleges” to increase enrollment and entrap students in crippling debt with an education that will not yield employment sufficient to cover the costs.
In effort to provide more oversight for these colleges, the Obama Administration has enacted the “gainful employment” law, which prevents institutions which are unable to adequately provide employment appropriate to the debts incurred by its students to receive government funding.
This is one case (of many) in which brand awareness and the ease of communication has worked to debunk and dismantle a corrupted system.