Universities are a key contributor to the UK economy, generating more than £95 billion per year and over 940,000 full-time equivalent jobs. They strengthen the UK’s place in the world through international partnerships, attracting the world’s top talent, and contributing £13.1 billion in export earnings. Educational marketing is crucial to engage and attract students and consumers and this blog examines 10 key education marketing strategies that can benefit those in the higher education sector.
- Utilising all social media platforms
According to Statista, 3.78 billion people are using social media in 2021, and so it is not difficult to understand the need for educational brands to have engaging online accounts. It is essential that brands connect and engage with their target audiences on various social media accounts. To establish meaningful connections with prospective students, you must appeal to them both academically and informally, creating an engaging tone that reveals character, encouragement, and brand value. By tracking your social analytics, you can review the demographic that you are reaching and the number of people that you are reaching.
- The importance of digital advertising
Digital marketing can target certain demographics and ensure that your content is reaching the target audience and beyond. Whilst digital advertising is significantly related to social media, use of banner ads, PPC, email, apps, affiliate, and search engine advertising expands this. To ensure that your education marketing is as successful as possible, you must incorporate a multi-channel approach and monitor the results of your data to assess the effectiveness of your digital advertising.
- Mobile-friendly websites
In 2021, it is reported that there are almost 4 billion smart phone users and so the need for mobile-friendly websites has never been more essential given Google’s ever-changing algorithms. A mobile-friendly website is responsive, straight-forward and engaging. It provides a focus on essential content, a division of menus, the needs of your user, and the service you offer. One of our clients, FutureLearn shows example of an appealing, mobile-friendly educational platform. A smartphone is often preferable to the desktop, so it is key to ensure your visitors can have a good experience on your site when they’re visiting from their mobile devices.
- The significance of testimonials
Our fourth education marketing strategy notes the importance of using reviews to drive brand engagement. Content is king and online reviews matter. People want detailed first-hand information from their online peers, whom they trust, to help them make decisions and become informed about the customer experience. One of the biggest benefits online reviews bring is a boost in local search ranking. Online Google reviews can be just what a consumer or student needs to encourage them from consideration to purchase. Reviews are easy to leave and it is key that you make written feedback optional and work mainly on a star-based rating. Great reviews increase brand trust and click-through rates. Click here to see some of our 5* reviews to see what we mean.
- Creating video content
We all know that videos are far more engaging than content, so utilise video platforms such as TikTok or YouTube where you can incorporate the use of people and fun graphics. Educational marketing through video may include expert interviews, event videos, testimonial reviews, and how-to demonstrations. It is a quick and easy way for you to share valuable information to clients or potential students. Video encourages learning, memory, and comprehension, and is easily shared through search engines and social media – exactly where your audience are asking their questions.
Influencer marketing is a type of word-of-mouth marketing that focuses on using a popular creator to amplify your brand message to a larger audience. Influencers can have a huge niche following who can help spread the word about your business by endorsing it. Studies show that 70% of millennial consumers’ buying decisions are influenced. Micro or Nano influencers (<25k followers), can support a marketing strategy on smaller scale with higher engagement rates and the ability to reach a highly-targeted audience for your brand. If the content that influencers post is relevant to your brand, their followers will likely receive your sponsored posts with the same enthusiasm. It is a cost-effective marketing strategy that can appeal to a certain demographic.
- Build the brand
Higher education platforms need to develop a consistent brand and personality. This develops a positive perception amongst your target audience about your company. Every aspect of the marketing and content strategy must be aligned with your brand and what it has to offer. A strong brand presence will improve your chances of converting visitors to consumers. By keeping your voice consistent across all channels, audiences will remember how you made them feel and what to expect on their consumer journey. In the long run, you create a relatable identity. Are your brand values, images, and messaging consistent across all channels?
- Email Marketing
Email marketing is still a key strategy for engaging with your audience using tailored content and higher education marketing strategies are all about timing. When advertising revision services, prioritise the months of February and March for your email marketing campaigns and when marketing University enrollment, think of the UCAS application deadline which takes place in January. Email marketing allows you to analyse and measure your ROI quickly by measuring your results and whether your emails are being opened and measure click rates. You can also view actions as well as unsubscribes and the reasoning behind why. By using the data you’ve collected from your mailing list, you can create more relevant content, improving your open and clickthrough rates as well as your overall conversion rates. Campaigns can create impactful engagement at each stage of sales, from lead generation through to conversion.
- Create educational apps
Online learning has boomed and the use of textbooks and more traditional methods has changed and the need for online resources is key. Across education, the significance of apps has increased and encourages reliability, convenience, and accessibility for the consumer. Having an app is a successful educational marketing tool for it allows for the encouragement of students given features such as push notifications and the creation of an online community.
- Personalise your content
We all know that one size does not fit all, and so one of the key education marketing strategies is to personalise your content to each individual user. Allow your students and service users to represent your brand, letting them tell your story well. Think about how to get that message conveyed, decide what resources you need, how you will go about content creation, and who needs to be involved. Remember that content can come in multiple forms from webinars, emails, white papers, surveys, blog posts, slide shares, interactive content, videos, infographics, social media posts, and podcasts.
By using our 10 key educational marketing tactics, your higher education brand will profit from enrolment and engagement whilst assisting students in making key educational choices.
NICOLA MONGON is the MD of Spotlight Recruitment, specialists in marketing, digital, and communications recruitment since 2008. Read our 5* Google reviews from candidates and clients to find out more. If you would like to discuss hiring plans or find out more about us, you can reach Spotlight at 020 3008 4254 or firstname.lastname@example.org