Wondering How to Increase Enrolment, Improve Reputation and Enhance Recognition of your Educational Institution?
If you said yes to the above questions, it is time to Transform your Institution’s Marketing Strategy. Fear not, we offer you few simple tips on how to capitalize on ideas that are practical and simple to apply; to build brand awareness, enhance alumni engagement, and increase enrollment and academic profile. It will also help you strengthen market position, be an innovative leader for excellence in teaching and research.
Core Key Message
Every great educational institution needs a good core key message. What this message represents is not just a simple phrase, it is also not simply a string of words; a core key message is an idea that is tightly intertwined with the very spirit and values of your way of doing business. Sometimes it is hard to think of a good core key message. However, once you scratch the surface you will see that the core key message is always already there, all you need to do is discover it.
Your website is at the heart of any communication
Everyone knows how critical first impressions can be. Your educational institution’s website is the first stop for potential and existing parents and pupils. The aim is to make that first impression a lasting one.
Your educational institution website is a vital tool for communicating to all stakeholders both within the Educational institution, and to the wider community.
Even in its simplest form as a pure information site. It must work hard – because as everyone knows, the web has become the first port of call for any fact-finding mission. This means that any prospective parent and pupil will be typing your Educational institution name into Google, and expecting to be wowed when they land on your homepage. Also with any electronic campaign, all rivers lead to the ocean – your website. Therefore, it has to be well thought out, well designed and from a technical point of view perform well.
Your blog can show the human face of your Educational institution
Blogs can be a wonderful way of showing a different side to your educational institution. It should be viewed as the electronic equivalent of the educational institution magazine – it can contain stories and views that wouldn’t necessarily be a part of your main site.
It can provide a great platform for parent communication and collaboration, providing lessons and materials, project-based learning platform, discussions, to share ideas etc. Blogs are generally viewed with more credibility as a personal view, not just PR. The blog can also let pupils feel that they can have their say and be more involved with the educational institution community.
One caveat though – obviously it goes without saying, blogs needed to be strictly monitored!
The majority of educational institutions use email for informing pupils, students and parents of everyday activities and events.
This can be expanded further by producing online newsletters which contain text and pictures. This requires a template design that can be used for each addition, and (potentially) a third party supplier to send out the emails.
The form of email can be used very effectively in the education sector. It can be used to market to people outside the educational institution’s community such as corporates. For example, it could work very well for fundraising initiatives, sponsorship or special events that need to be widely publicized in a more professional and impactful way.
Using social media can be quick & effective
There is a myriad of social networks out there but we will focus on the three most common.
Facebook: Many educational institutions have discovered that Facebook can be a powerful tool for reaching wider community such as educational institution ex-pupils. It’s a great place to store photo galleries of events, speech days, and all the other exciting, wonderful happenings and news you want your community both at home and abroad to be a part of. Think of it as a network where people can join and contribute – it’s a simple way for people connected with your Educational institution to keep in touch.
YouTube: Video is a fantastic way to give parents and pupils a unique perspective of your educational institution. The power of peer to peer marketing should not be underestimated. Consider telling the stories of real pupils and key stakeholders to engage all areas of the community.
Pinterest: Pinterest is a social sharing platform that allows users to compile inspirational, creative or interesting content into one place. It can be a fantastic way to showcase the personality of the educational institution and communicate your wider interests outside of the classrooms.
The Last Word
Ill-judged use of any marketing media will damage your brand, not enhance it. Electronic marketing is no different to any other media. You should ask yourself the same questions you ask before you choose any media. Is it right for our market? Does it contain the right messages? Is it well designed? Etc
Summing up, it is not the silver bullet that can cure all your marketing ills. But it can be a fantastic tool to support all the other good things you do to promote your educational institution.