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Igneous Personalizes USCís College Admissions Process

20th July, 2005

Santa Cruz, Calif. July 20, 2005 -- The Igneous Group, Inc. (Igneous), an Internet strategy and consulting firm, has successfully launched Student Information Gateway, a powerful new recruitment tool, for University of Southern California. The Web-based SIG application is a self-service system that allows todayís tech-savvy high school students to get information the way they want it. Unlike other automated admissions processes that can be mechanical and impersonal, SIG delivers highly customized information, or "views," for undergraduates according to their personal choices and preferences, making it easy for each prospective student to see USC through the lens of his or her own goals, needs, extra-curricular interests, and learning styles. Thousands of high school students across the nation are currently using Igneous' SIG application to envision their future at USC. "Undergraduate recruitment is a strategic focus for USC, and an increasingly competitive challenge," states Katharine Harrington, Dean of Admission and Financial aid at USC. "By using Igneous' customer-centric Web technology as a tool for becoming more responsive, we are better able to recruit the next generation of leaders, and we will advance USCís overall mission and reputation." "The Web is the most cost-effective form of sales and marketing available right now, and enterprises are looking for Web-based solutions that will get them closer to their customers," says Geoff Caras, Chief Executive Officer of Igneous. "Unfortunately, many organizations settle for window dressing Ė flashy graphics and gimmicks that donít enhance customer relationships. Organizations like USC understand that customer satisfaction is directly related to the way in which information is structured and organized, and how each customer finds the information he or she is seeking. By creating memorable customer experiences, enterprises can achieve customer loyalty and repeat business in an increasingly commoditized world." Igneous systems are based on the philosophy that every enterprise can grow and prosper by becoming more customer-centric. Igneous works closely with clients to identify customer touch points, or "connections" in business processes. Examples include: - connecting customers with different needs to the product and service information they want; - connecting enterprises with customers through memorable experiences and continuous communication; - connecting customers to other customers to create a sense of community; - connecting service and support staff to individualized, customer-specific information to enhance customer relationships; and - connecting different types of information systems for greater efficiencies and reduced operating costs. "Our concept for SIG was much more than a knee-jerk reaction to market forces that demand higher quality, online communications," continues Harrington. "With SIG, we envisioned a system that would enhance the sense of connection between prospective students and USC, and create an interactive environment that is learning-centered, self-directed, and personalized. This is exactly what Igneous delivered." Igneousí SIG tool includes the following features: - Content can be added, changed, or re-categorized over time. Prospective students will see information about the USC change immediately as they change their interests. - Security infrastructure provides each student with a unique login for self-selecting interests, updating contact information, and more. - Each student can have an Admissions and Financial Aid "To Do" list that shows key application deadlines and includes personalized tasks. These tasks can change based on a students role, for example, prospect versus applicant. - Students can keep a list of favorite links and content for quick access. - Students can share interests and information with others via the "email to a friend" function. - High school counselors can see an aggregate view of student interests at their school, follow links to learn how USC serves those interests, and serve students better as a result. About The Igneous Group, Inc. Igneous is an Internet strategy and consulting firm dedicated to infusing the Web into business strategy. The Company envisions designs, builds, and implements systems based on the philosophy that every enterprise can grow and prosper by becoming more customer-centric. Igneous works closely and directly with clients to explore and expand customer touch points, or "connections," across multiple levels of an organization. These connections enable clients to deliver consistently memorable customer experiences, resulting in customer loyalty and repeat business. With a 15-year track record in developing and deploying successful Internet strategies to hundreds of emerging and mid-sized enterprises, Igneous empowers entrepreneurs to take control of the Internet and use it to their strategic advantage. For more information about Igneous, visit . Editorís Note: High resolution images and SIG screen shots are available upon request.

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