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Higher Ed Digital Marketing Tips for 2023

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As higher ed recruiters, you know that digital marketing is often working toward the same goals as your offline marketing equivalents. But how you approach it is a different story.

From introductory drip emails to digital advertising campaigns, the sky is the limit – but it’s a double-edged sword. Digital tools increase your reach and audience, but they also create challenges when it comes to scale, adaptability and competition.

Our new whitepaper, “Unibuddy Higher Ed Digital Marketing Guide: What You Need to Know in 2023,” discusses using digital tools to gain and hold prospective students’ attention – but here are a few tips you can implement right now.

Essential tips for your 2023 marketing efforts

Keep all content relevant 

Include user-generated content (UGC) in your marketing plan. Doing so will allow prospects to hear directly from current students or staff, creating a personalized and relevant experience.

But don’t create content just to create it. While it needs to be relevant to your audience, it should also provide a path to conversion or other measurable goals.

Content should be authentic and consistent

Your digital presence is what drives informed impressions: 72% of prospective students look at your website for their initial research. Just 42% visit campus. 

You don’t have long to capture their attention – and it can be difficult to keep it. 

That’s why you must sound authentic to students and use language that catches their eye. It should reflect the language they use every day and remain consistent across all digital assets. 

Consider enlisting the help of your student ambassadors for this. Again don’t panic about moving away from “official” language – you want prospects to relate to what you’re offering.

Get the Unibuddy Higher Ed Digital Marketing Guide: What You Need to Know in 2023.

Take an omnichannel approach

By the time Gen Z students land on your site, they’ve likely interacted with your content and digital assets on another device at least once. For this reason, you must cover your bases by creating content that works together across channels. 

Social media is no longer an afterthought, so invest in the resources needed to bring coordinated omnichannel plans to fruition, such as ambassadors or freelancers.

Use student ambassadors and get them on social media

On that note, if you haven’t launched a student ambassador program, now is the time to do so.

A student ambassador acts as an on-campus advocate, and to a prospective student, their insights into campus life are invaluable. In fact, 92% of Gen Z students say connecting with current students informs their higher ed decision.

Related: What is a Student Ambassador?

Once you’ve found student ambassadors, put them on social media. Like influencers, Gen Z views student ambassadors as peers offering genuine information. As they interact with prospects, let your ambassadors move away from traditional higher ed language – social media is meant to be social, after all. 

Assign a few to monitor and participate on platforms such as TikTok or Instagram. Once they’re established, use the account to distribute content.

Write for SEO

Any content you create should be set up to appear in search engine results. Everything you write for a digital audience, from titles to copy to images, needs to be optimized for search.

Instead of stuffing keywords into your content, use clear, concise language that answers relevant questions. All content, including video, should be well-organized with keywords, a title and subtitles.

Collect and use data

Data is everywhere. If you’re not collecting and using it, you’re missing out. 

When you collect data on your target audience, you learn things like their social media preferences and what they’re curious about or interested in. These can all feed upward into future campaign planning – and while data-backed strategies with measurable goals and testing can’t guarantee success, they come close to it. 

Host digital events

Accessibility is key to successful marketing. When you ensure that everyone has equal access to what your institution offers through hybrid or virtual events, you empower every prospective student to make the right decision for them, regardless of their location or background.

Related: When a Hybrid Event Fails to Recruit Students

When done well, the impact of a digital session can last long after everyone has signed off. Like an on-campus event, there should be several opportunities to interact with ambassadors during the event and it should be easy to continue the conversation once it’s over.

Take advantage of SaaS solutions

SaaS (software-as-a-service) solutions like Unibuddy are here to help you scale your digital experience to thousands while you can focus on the important stuff, like recruitment.

At Unibuddy, we strive to provide platforms that help you reach your goals by driving digital conversation. With solutions that plug into your existing processes, a full support team and a host of data collection tools, partnering with Unibuddy will help you find higher ed success in 2023.

Learn more about tips like these in the new “Unibuddy Higher Ed Digital Marketing Guide: What You Need to Know in 2023.” 

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