Does your school have a social media presence? Are you using it to effectively market your curricula? If you haven’t incorporated social media marketing in your strategies yet, you’re missing out on a golden opportunity to tell people what you’re offering and attract new students.
Based on a study by mStoner and TargetX, nearly 60% of prospective students use social media to look for colleges to attend. Using social media to promote your school, therefore, allows you to meet your students where they are and engage them through the communication channels they frequently use.
If you want to make social media marketing work for your school, look no further. In this article, we share 6 social media marketing strategies to help boost your online presence and attract new students.
Let’s dive in!
Leverage User-Generated Content
User-generated content (UGC) is the goal of many social media marketers these days, however, it’s also a relevant tactic for schools. Why?
UGC that is genuine and engaging can provide prospective students a glimpse of what life is like as a student. By allowing your current enrollees to post pictures of themselves on campus as they make friends, attend classes, go to events, and more, recruits can envision themselves doing the same things.
In addition to getting the attention of new students, it also helps your community of students, faculty, parents, and alumni feel involved and more connected.
This article suggests some ways schools can get started with UGC.
Tap Into Your Alumni Network
Do you have successful or notable graduates? It pays to keep track of promising graduates since you can connect with them and see if they’d be interested in being ambassadors for your school.
This is a win-win scenario for all since it allows you to build credibility, gives incoming students something to aspire to while successful alumni can guide them.
Since most prospective students spend a lot of time on social networks, it’s helpful to identify alumni who already have a social media presence. This will make it easier for them to engage students through platforms they’re familiar with.
Glacier expands on this idea and teaches how to market your school with alumni influencers.
Generate Inquiries with Ads
Advertising on social media networks is still one of the best ways to market schools. Platforms today allow you to exert more control than ever over your campaign objectives and who sees your ads. They also generate useful analytics so that you can see the results of your ads and make necessary adjustments to future campaigns.
You can experiment with different target audiences, graphics, and copy. To cut down on costs, create your own professional-looking graphics with ready-made templates that are available online. Sites like PosterMyWall offer a wide variety of school admission flyer templates that can be used for free.
Use Stories To Your Advantage
Apps like Instagram and Facebook have story features that allow you to create fun, consumable content. Fifty-nine percent of respondents from the survey we mentioned earlier visit Instagram once a day while 20% of them use Facebook daily.
You can take advantage of this behavior by showcasing life on campus and in the dorms as well as sharing snippets from live events, and other behind-the-scenes content. If you have an upcoming event, you can also share posters and flyers with stories. Again, PosterMyWall is an excellent resource for this. With its numerous templates, you can use its flyer maker to match any look and feel you’re going for.
Keep in mind, however, that stories are only available for 24 hours and disappear after so allocate your resources accordingly.
Employ Location-based Marketing With Geofilters
Over 50% of respondents from the Digital Admissions Report use Snapchat at least once a day so it’s a good idea to include it in your marketing strategy.
One way to do this is by using location-based marketing with the geofilters feature. For the uninitiated, Snapchat’s geofilters employ the same basic principle as regular image filters. Users can access image overlays that can be placed over their own images and videos with one catch: geofilters can only be used if you’re in certain areas that the owner of the filter has tagged.
Why is this good news for you? It lets you target and engage audiences within the immediate or certain vicinities. You can also create your own custom filters to promote different aspects of your school such as the campus, a notable lecture, promotions you’re offering — the sky’s the limit.
Check out this article for specific ways you can use geofiltering in marketing.
Have Someone Take Over Your School’s Social Media Account
This idea lends a new twist to creating user-generated content. Instead of enlisting your community to create content for you, allow them to also take the reins and use your social media account for a day.
Letting someone else post on your behalf opens the doors for fresh perspectives and new angles for storytelling. It also helps raise awareness and credibility for your school while fostering a greater sense of community.
Since you’ll be asking someone else to create and post content for you, it’s important to carefully screen and select the person who’ll be handling your accounts. You could perhaps look into notable thought leaders in your faculty, student influencers, and other people who can create great content.
This article provides more information on social media takeovers as well as several inspiring examples.
As you can see, there are many ways to integrate social media marketing into your recruitment marketing strategy. By putting them to use you can be where your markets are and use them to generate interest and engagement during admissions.