Nowadays, social media is proving to be a very effective marketing tool for the education sector. It presents a huge opportunity for schools, universities and other educational organisations to reach out and market themselves to potential students. Many of these potential students are spending their time on social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram etc.
Whilst some education providers are still thinking about the possibility of participating in social media, many others are already actively and successfully engaging with their audience through social media channels, taking advantage of this tool.
Providing valuable content is important to any industry and is key to the education sector. Many potential students wish to know more about different education providers before making a decision to pursue one. Providing them with content that is based on their needs (and not on hard selling), is key in helping them make a decision in your favour. Many smart education providers also include calls-to-action on their content such as clicking to read an article on their site blog, joining the mailing list, responding to a survey, etc.
Education providers that are successful by marketing in social media know they need to listen to their audience before they write their updates. This requires searching for conversations taking place around your niche, identifying issues, trends and opportunities. By listening to what is being said about you or your specific niche, you’re able to create more targeted content and strategies.
Social media is a great way to provide excellent customer service for existing and potential students. Responding to their comments and promptly replying to their questions will help them trust you, which may lead to them choosing you as their education provider. If they feel they have support in social media, they feel they’ll also have support during the time of their courses too.
An important consideration for education providers is their ability to “think outside the box” and stand out from the competition, becoming appealing to potential students.
Many education providers such as universities are successfully doing this on social media by creative campaigns such as running photo contests or showing the social side of their school or university in a series of funny/engaging videos. As long as it is appealing to your audience, getting really creative can set you apart from the competition and even have a viral effect.
Social media is a fantastic way to search and find industry influencers that are key to the education sector like journalists, magazines, marketing partners, etc. Smart education providers are not only finding them, they are also engaging with them by creating relationships that can have a huge influence in their brand awareness and reputation.
Smart education providers invite their current and former students to join their social media networks and regularly engage with them, making sure they keep in touch. This is very important in the education sector since very often, this works by “word-of-mouth” and is based on recommendations. Who better to recommend you directly through your social media profiles than your happy students?
There are many education providers that due to their excellent services and successful presence in social media, have established a pool of brand advocates that regularly follow and like them, comment and share their updates and are also able to recommend them. These are treasures to be kept since their opinions are key for the education providers, especially for potential students that are looking for impartial reviews.
Education providers are keeping their brand advocates by regularly keeping in touch with and rewarding them. It can be with a discount to a short course, a personalised “Happy Birthday” card, or any other reward they may think of. Who doesn’t like to receive a present from a company they really like?
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