Can Digital Marketing Improve Higher Education?

In 2017, universities were put on the back foot. Previously seen as unquestionable contributors for the good of the public, last year saw them face damaging revelations that 68% of students thought their courses were poor value for money. With a storm of debates over tuition fees, Vice-Chancellor salaries and decreasing student satisfaction rates, universities find themselves in an uphill battle to look in touch with their students and provide a competitive edge in a heavily saturated market.

Whilst applications from outside the EU were up 2%, these key 2017 Ucas application figures show a different trend:

  • Number of people applying for university places fell by more than 25,000 (4%)
  • Applications from the four UK nations reduced by: England (4%), Scotland (1%), Wales (5%), Northern Ireland (4%)
  • Applications from EU students fell by 5%
  • Mature student applications from England were down 18% (11,190)

In our Effective Digital Marketing in Higher Education course, we look at 4 areas which aim to help improve student recruitment in universities:

Developing an Effective Digital Marketing Strategy

One of the main issues facing universities is the key need to attract and retain students. Whilst vast proportions of budgets are spent on improving infrastructure and learning in attempt to combat this issue, one effective way of attracting and retaining students is to develop a cohesive digital marketing strategy.

Dave Musson, the Lead Social Media Strategist at Net Natives, will be sharing his wealth of knowledge on how to communicate effectively with departments and academics to ensure all digital marketing aligns with key objectives, and showing how strategy can maximise ROI using best practice case studies.

Maintaining Brand Identity for Post-Graduate Digital Marketing

Brand identity is crucial to creating a competitive edge and also retain students once they have completed their undergraduate courses. Segmenting audiences effectively is vital to helping the development of strategies for post-graduate marketing.

Charlotte Renwick, Associate Director for Student Marketing and UK Recruitment at Leeds Beckett University, will demonstrate how behaviour analysis can translate a brand effectively and find new ways to reach prospective students. She will also explain how a targeted advertising strategy can be crucial to identifying potential students through clicks and interests.

Innovative Digital Techniques in International Student Recruitment

With International Student Recruitment such a lucrative market, it’s important universities understand how to utilise their brand effectively to differentiate from other providers in a crowded market. They need to consider alternative marketing techniques using higher education and business partnerships, and explore different messaging to prospective EU students by using targeted marketing to ensure the brand connects with both EU and non-EU nationals.

Effective Data Management

Data Management is key for any marketing organisation. David Turton, Campaign and Conversion Manager for the University of Sunderland, which recently won the Gold Heist Award for Best Undergraduate Student Recruitment Campaign 2017, will explore a range of digital marketing strategies to leave universities bet-placed to handle falling further education leaver numbers. He’ll also look at how utilising CRM systems can ensure that data quantifies successful initiatives, and show how to discover target audiences based on in-depth online profile analysis to ensure cost-effective initiatives.

Now over to you:

Do you have any digital marketing in Higher Education tips? Are there any specific techniques that you would like to share? Tweet us using #UMGTraining @UModernGov

If you’re thinking that this sounds beneficial either for yourself or for a colleague, get in touch to have a chat or make a booking. We would love to hear from you. If you would like to learn more about this training day or would like to book your place, please call 0800 542 9440 or email [email protected].

Do you have a team of staff at your organisation who would benefit from Effective Digital Marketing in Higher Education training? We also offer this course as a highly flexible In-House training session, delivered direct to your organisation on a date to suit you. Contact our In-House Training team on [email protected] to find out more.