Proven Digital Marketing Strategies for Schools/Colleges to increase enrollments
Are you looking to get a swift increase in your college or school admissions? Then read this complete article to get the right kind of digital marketing strategy. Whether you are a big school/College or university or may be a small private coaching center, it doesn’t matter; I have shared best researched marketing strategies to increase the enrollments by 2x to 3X.
I am sharing this result driven education marketing strategy which we have used to generate up to 5x results.
You may develop a similar module for increasing the student’s enrollment in your education institution.
Let’s jump in:
A: Distinctive Identification
Find the right students and parents for your institution.
Distinctive Identification is simply the process of identification of targeting ideal students and parents; to whom you want to influence your educational institution.
We should have proper insights about who our students or parents are going to be. Are you providing great infrastructure with all primary amenities ? If you are providing top infrastructure and academic facilities, are you targeting high income parents so that they can pay the fees in one installments or they may pay in couple of months or are you targeting ordinary parents who can afford the standard monthly payments.
Are you looking for students who are looking for institutions proving exposure in sports and arts activities? or only academic activities.
If you had a clear understanding of your ideal parents and students, it would help in reaching and converting them to your customers quickly.
Better customer understanding is equivalent to customer retention and endorsement.
The benefits of doing this are:
- It will help to generate more quality leads for your institution
- Helps in Targeting and positioning them
- To implement motivation in the parents/students to take admission
- It increases net profit
How can this be done:
- Through data collection
- Learn from existing students
This step has substantial importance in the success of your organization.
Understanding parents and students expectations is always better to design and execute the marketing strategies accordingaly.
B. Create a customer journey map for your ideal parents.
Map the touchpoints of your parents and students from the awareness stage to taking admission in your institution.
It is a visual story of your target audiences’ interactions with your school/college at each stage. It allows you to gain deep insights into your ideal parents and students’ pain points that lead them away from your institution to your competitors.
- How do they learn about your institution?
- Whether they are interacting with the website, social media, any other online places?
- How are your ideal parents and students interacting with your educational institution’s touchpoints?.
Important things to be considered while preparing a customer journey map is
- Understand the touchpoints of the parents and students
- Identify main areas where they experience difficulty and frustration in choosing you
- Sort out if people are abandoning you, why is it happening?
- Stay updated and keep improving.
The benefits of doing this are:
- Able to attract parents and students equally and able to hold them
- Implement customer-oriented service
- Create a student/parent focused mentality in your organization it will help you to generate the leads
Digital Marketing strategies:
1) Create a Website for your parents and students.
Every institution should have a website and that website should meet the expectations of the students as well as parents.
Image: website example
Now; question may come in your mind like, how will websites increase the admissions? Humans process images 60,000 times faster than text. Make your website responsive. Websites create an excellent first impression in your customers mind. Even an elegant website represents the reputation of the organization. Websites would be an efficient sales tool. Website should be more transparent and it reflects the students’ life in your institution.
A good website can take your visitors to an amazing virtual campus tour. That will further increase the chance of getting students enrolled by creating an image of beautiful campus life in the minds of the students.
Your website browsing experience should be great and it should clearly navigare on fast landing pages and mobile responsive.
.Make sure the website as well as landing pages should have the right kind of CTA’s to engage the visitors.
2) How to use Social Media for Education Marketing
You need to understand the expectation of the pearnes as well as students and in that perspective find the right social media channels to target your students and parents.
Socialmedia is one of the best tools to attract the students and parents towards your institution.
It’s so simple you have to take care of creating the right content as per the expectation by students and parents.
Create an online tribe; where you can share instantly online information with them. Create a marketing strategy to engage them . Make sure before posting any content i.e. it may be videos or graphics; It should be updated. Regularly post the photos of activities, upcoming events, functions happening in institutions etc.
Keep good connections with alumni of your institution;LinkedIn is one of the best platforms for the same. LinkedIn helps to improve your institutions’ image and reputation since it displays company profiles, students, and alumni and it’s one of the professional social media.
By using social media you can increase the traffic on your website , landing page or any other of your official eportals.SOme times you may run ads on facebook, instagram etc to increase the traffic on landing page/ website to generate some good leads.
Under the FB campaign you can target students by their location, age, etc.
3) How to use Content marketing for your institution
Create regularly valuable content for your targeted audiences and make sure it should reach them on a defined interval.
Most of the time, I think the first contact between school/University is through the online content. This content will create a first impression in the customer’s mind about your institution and by the content itself they start thinking about your institution. And accordingly they start to take the decision on whether to proceed or not
Most probably the first contact between a student or parents with the university/school is through online content.
It will leave the first impression in the minds of your target audiences that will decide whether to proceed or not.Do invest in good content so that it will help your institution to boost the presence on online platforms. By the content itself, a larger audience should engage with your online post.
Make sure you have included attractive images, text showing your goal, objective, etc. Contents will help parents as well as students to make the final decision . They will get all information they are looking for via content marketing.
Content marketing generates quality leads, high rate traffic on website and landing page and indirectly it increases the admission enrollments. Content marketing is 24*7 customer executives for your institution.
Via content marketing we increase the SEO ranking of websites so that website ranks in the top position when students or parents browse search engines like Google.
4) How to use SEO for your education institutions
Try to understand what parents or students are looking for online information about institution.SEO i.e. Search engine optimization is a process of increasing traffic qualified and high range of quantity traffic on your website/landing page through search engine results.
Via SEO what you can Achieve:
- Growth in brand awareness
- Improve visibility of website/page
- Free unlimited traffic to website/page
- You can assure your content gets to your target audiences when they search in Google or any other search engines.
- Now, this will help to engage the viewers and build a relationship with them; this leads them to the process of taking admission.
What all to make sure of while doing SEO:
- The website design as well as content of the website should be students or parents focused.
- The contents which are available on the website should lead to engaging the students on the website/Landing page for further action. the details of the process.
- COntent should contain relevant keywords so that whenever any students would like to access the information about the institution ; they should visit your website.
- Page Title, Description, Headlines and the remaining content should have most of the keywords.
- If somebody searches – Top school in Maharashtra then your school should come in first 10 search results.
If you follow the above tips ; then website traffic will increase and then you will get quality leads; these leads will be converted into final admissions via counselors or through chatbot.
5) How to use Google PPC for your educational institution?
Generate highly targeted website traffic from potential parents/students.
What is PPC? Pay-per-click. It is an internet advertising model used to drive traffic to websites, in which an advertiser pays a publisher when the ad gets the click.
Google ad is a type of pay per click advertising relatively cheap, easy, and strategic. It can increase the awareness of your school/college effectively to your target audiences.
Mainly two places the ads are seen:
- Google Search Network: it will appear like a text in the Google search results.
- Google Display Network: In other third-party websites, you can see the ads like a banner.
The next question that arises is,
How can we advertise our school/college on Google?
Learn the basics of Google ads and run the campaign by yourself or with the help of Digital Marketing Agency, but to mention that it’s a time-consuming job to learn, and you have to monitor its progress and keep track of it.
Hire an educational marketing agency to build and monitor the campaign and keep track of it.
Suppose you are ambitious about it and would like to have a considerable increase in student enrollments. It would be better to engage in an experienced education marketing agency.
6) How can we use remarketing for your educational institution?
Attract and follow potential students/parents online, who are already shown interested in your institution.
It’s nothing much. Recently I searched flipkart to buy a laptop. Later on, I noticed that whenever I open Facebook or any other websites or pages, everywhere, the ad for my laptop starts popping up.
The logic is simple, keeping something you are interested in right in front of you always so that you will decide to buy it. It’s a simple virtual call to action.
Now let’s see how this helps in educational marketing. We can show the ads about your school/college to your target audience who already visited the website.
Suppose if we can convince them to take a call to action like calling the school/college counselor for more information or a campus visit. There is a high chance that they will take admission as they already showed interest in your institution.
Remarketing is one of the famous and influential online marketing tactics. It helps your target audiences to consider your institution by following them online, with attractive offers or contents that motivates them to take action favorable to our brand.
7) Implement lead generation and nurturing for your institution
Create strategies that motivate them to contact you and provide excellent customer experience.
Lead generation is the initiation of parents/students enquiry to our institution for more details. Lead nurturing is effectively engaging these audiences by offering relevant information, providing all the necessary support they need, maintaining interest and delight throughout the admission process.
Timely follow up, and personalization is also essential as it impacts the decision of the parents and students.
Let’s see how to generate lead:
- Identify the target audience.
- Create and promote valuable content to generate leads.
- Create personalization in website
- Live chat and support
- Use email newsletters to build relationships with the customers.
- Make maximum use of social media to connect and engage with the audience.
Effective ways for lead nurturing are:
- Using multiple platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc. does not stick to a single one.
- Use targeted content to defined audiance
- Timely follow up to keep the customers engaged and interested so finally they take admission.
- Use mixed content concentrating on multiple touchpoints.
- Make emails personalized to attract leads.
- Keep track of the leads and determine which lead to concentrate on.
08) Implement live support and chatbots for potentials
Be available for your potential parents/students when they need help.
What is the use of live chat and chatbots?
Imagine if potential students or parents are stuck while filling the online forms or anything on your school website, there is no one available for help. Then if we have a good and efficient help desk with live chat and chatbots, it would be a great experience in the minds of the potentials.
It will reduce the errors and anxiety of your parents and students. You can also instantly connect with more students using live chat and chatbots that will promote the engagement of the potential.
Better customer experience leads them to share their personal information like mobile numbers and emails, which can be used for online remarketing and offline personal follow up.
Where to concentrate:
- Increase your availability
- Engage with the visitors
- Build a relationship with customers
- Use AI chatbots
09) Provide Personal assistance:
Personal assistance is the most critical step to increase enrollment.
Maintaining good customer service in every interaction your staff has with the students/parents comes under customer service.
Make sure that:
- Customer service strategy should consider both parents and students
- Define dedicated team for the same
- Keep in touch through live chat and social media platforms
- Response time should be convincing
- Keep a check on the satisfaction level of the students and parents
- Provide personalized customer care service
- Make sure they have resolved their question and satisfied
- Ask for feedback
- Update and make changes based on feedback
- Be customer-centric.
Above mentioned efforts will build a positive brand perception in the minds of the potential students and parents that will lead them to take admission fast.
10) Use marketing automation tools.
Use technology to personalize the experience and importance for each parent/student.
The best key to increase enrollment, deliver the right messages to the right parents and students at the right time. Marketing automation is the best way to do this.
For this purpose, you can invest in any popular marketing automation tools. Which includes email marketing, social media marketing, lead generation, lead nurturing, website personalization, and a lot more.
What are the benefits of doing this:
- Reduce staffing cost
- Better ROI capable of automating cross-sells upsells and follow-ups which can boost revenue.
- Easier for the marketing and sales team
- Saves a lot of time
- Increased effectiveness
It tracks students and parents in brand touchpoints based on behavior and interests.
It automatically tags students who haven’t been engaged in campaigns and send targeted messages to students about what they want. It can free up your Counselor’s time. It’s beneficial for being consistent with the customers and developing customer retention. Helps to keep in touch and interested and then take action.
Marketing automation helps you to give priority to those students, who are mostly going to be our admission.
Let them Convert (take admission)
Creating a smooth and non-pushy experience leads to taking admission.
Which actions of the parents and students lead to the final conversion fast?. Conversion means to take admission, mark the steps before taking admission and create strategies to do the same with potentials.
- Campus visit: Motivate them to experience the campus and features. By the help of in-house counselors at school/college, we can convert the highly interested students quickly.
- Online Admissions: A student can take admission through the internet. You can use digital assets for the same and do the admission vai online as well.
- Find out which areas do the students/parents feel difficulty or they drop the plan of admission. Find it and fix it, take the necessary steps to speed up the conversion.
Make a smooth and comfortable user experience. Let them recommend you to others too by getting impressed by your service. Develop an outstanding online as well as offline user experience.
Additional marketing tactics we can use.
Supporting marketing tactics, we can use for speed up the conversion
Alumni are former students of the school/College, keep in touch with them. It is a beneficial marketing idea. You can share photos and special events with them. Make them engaged, ask them to share their reviews on social media and google.
A strong alumni network is always increasing the strength and reputation of the institution. Suppose the alumni of your school/college are well placed in jobs and society. It will also promote others to take admission into your school/College.
Take a serious approach to your online reputation.
Now, this is serious.
Online reputation matters a lot; it has a very strong influence on the parents and students decision making. People check reviews even before making a small online purchase.
So take a serious look at your online reputation and keep a check on what your current parents/students and competitors are saying about you.
Do you know: 84% of people trust online reviews as much as they trust recommendations from friends.
Hope you got the importance of your online reputation now. You can work with an online reputation management agency to take care of your online reputation.
Find any negative comments/ reviews this
Negative comments may influence the students looking to take admission in your school/education. Fix it immediately. Keep track of websites, social media, inside and outside branded channels. Keep an eye on reputation.
If a customer is satisfied with your service, you can ask them for a review. Ask your school/college alumni for positive reviews on social media and websites that will help a lot.
Each of these strategies mentioned above plays a vital role in the rate of enrollments.
Now you would have understood how important this is. You will require an experienced education marketing agency that can take this responsibility and make it a success with their experience and dedication.
I can support you in education marketing for your institution.
If you want Digital Marketing Services for your institution; you may call me on +91-9422336455 or write an email to email@example.com
Let’s increase enrollments and build your institution together. Take a small initiative for great success.