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Prospective students looking to attend a new school often search for specific aspects that would attract their attention—key points that would allow them to pursue their personal goals and aspirations. In such a competitive market, it can be difficult for prospects to find the perfect program. It can quickly turn into a long search, which makes effective digital marketing that much more important for those considering how to market education courses.

To stand out, your school will need to know how to market education courses effectively and actively showcase its program offerings to highlight its differentiating factors. The goal when marketing your courses should be around helping prospects easily discover your school and identify whether your programs are the right fit for them. As a result, developing a digital marketing strategy is essential.

Ready to discover how your school can improve its education marketing efforts to boost student recruitment? Read on for our top tips to making a greater impact!

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1. Personalize Your School’s Content Marketing Approach

Personalization is quickly becoming a cornerstone of digital marketing today. Research shows that 99% of surveyed marketers believe personalization helped boost customer relationships, with 78% specifying it had a “strong” or “extremely strong” impact. These numbers indicate how powerful personalization can be, creating great marketing opportunities for your school.

By personalizing your content, you get the chance to involve your prospects and engage them in a more meaningful interaction. You can get started by looking at your data and developing accurate student personas. If you don’t have data to work with, you can begin by surveying your students and discovering their needs, motivations, concerns, interests, and behaviours. With this information in hand, you can start crafting key messaging that would better resonate with the type of student you hope to attract.

Personalization can be easily viewed as a way for your school to create more of what your audience wants to see. The key messages that you develop can be repurposed and used on all of your digital marketing channels, from content creation to social media marketing. If you’re wondering how to promote educational programs, then this can be one of your first steps.

Example: To appeal to prospects seeking to study abroad in Rome, John Cabot University has created a blog post that introduces key ways to make their time in the city more memorable. This speaks directly to prospects who are motivated by travel and culture, looking to explore new places and meet the local community:

SEO higher education

Source: John Cabot University  

Identify Your Program’s Unique Value Proposition When Considering How to Market Education Courses

Your program’s unique value proposition can be used to generate engaging marketing ideas for school admission. Your unique value proposition essentially encapsulates the benefits of your program—the core reason why prospects should choose your school instead of its other competitors.

Coming up with an accurate unique value proposition can be overwhelming at first, but starting out with the right questions can help make the task easier and more approachable. Consider asking yourself the following:

  • What exactly is your program offering?
  • Who is your school targeting?
  • What benefits can your prospect expect to gain?
  • How are you different from your competitors?

Once you have the answers, you can begin creating a strong list of compelling factors to draw your prospects in—and showcasing it through various digital marketing channels. To make it clear to interested prospects, your school can share these points on its website or program page. This is the approach that Medix College takes when speaking to prospects on its homepage:

content strategy for schools

Source: Medix College

By combining this approach with content personalization and a strong understanding of your student personas, you can significantly strengthen the impact of your digital marketing efforts. This way, your school aims to cater to its prospects and student community—inspiring brand loyalty.

2. Embrace SEO Strategies to Boost Your Program’s Search Visibility

Implementing effective SEO is key to getting your school website noticed on Google’s search engine results page. You can do this by applying SEO best practices—including optimizing your website performance and integrating relevant keywords and backlinks into your web content. 

Your website performance typically refers to the overall effectiveness of your web design and user experience, with a focus on clear navigation and site speed. When it comes to the content your school creates, you’ll want to use the right keywords throughout the page, include engaging visuals with alt-text attributes, and add contextual links to strengthen the authority and credibility of your website. 

Another way to organically boost your site’s visibility and grab prospects’ attention is to focus on your search intent. Essentially, you’ll want to make sure that the content you create aligns with your prospects’ expectations. Matching the search intent ensures that your message lines up with existing search algorithms, allowing your message to appear and resonate with the right audience.

Pro Tip: Regularly conducting an SEO audit can help your school more easily identify strengths, trends, and areas for improvement. By consistently auditing your SEO efforts, you can make quick adjustments that allow you to reap more benefits, making your digital marketing strategy for higher education all the more effective.

3. Promote Your School’s Unique Program Features through Newsletter Marketing

Newsletter marketing is a great way to nurture leads and motivate them to register for your program. You can use your newsletter to start a conversation and highlight key program features in an engaging way through a direct channel, making the approach incredibly effective. 

This allows you to showcase your faculty expertise, share top resources or exclusive content, and spotlight program benefits and course content. These different ideas introduce numerous opportunities for schools contemplating how to market education courses. 

In the example below, EC English crafts an engaging email subject line to attract potential prospects and introduce a new program:

content marketing for higher ed

Once opened, prospects are immediately greeted with a compelling GIF of London’s iconic cityscape along with an easy-to-follow bullet list of program benefits: 

digital marketing strategy for higher education

Source: EC English

By choosing newsletter marketing, EC English is able to directly communicate with interested prospects and share convincing messaging that further motivates them to take action. Your school can take a similar approach to maximize the impact of newsletter marketing. 

4. Showcase Student Voices to Attract New Prospects

Student reviews and testimonials provide prospects with insider information, giving them the insights they need to form a definitive opinion about your school and its services. Your school can use student reviews and testimonials to promote its various programs and courses. This can be the answer for how to market your school. As such, student testimonials play a vital role in boosting student recruitment, giving your school the chance to highlight the unique value proposition of your courses in the perspective of real students.

Research indicates that 88% of consumers trust user reviews as much as personal recommendations. Used strategically, these reviews and testimonials can help your school establish social proof, the phenomenon that demonstrates your school has provided value to other prospects. Social proof, provided by student ambassadors, can even help your school expand its reach and attract new prospects—showing them that your programs are worth the investment. Through these ambassadors, you can showcase what your student experience in various school programs is really like and allow prospects to better visualize themselves at your school.

Example: ECAM Lyon uses student testimonials to promote its Engineering program. Through a short video on YouTube, the school spotlights a student’s story and focuses on key reasons why they’ve chosen this program, along with other relevant insights:

YouTube video

Inspire Your Prospect with Successful Alumni Stories 

Your alumni are a great asset for your digital marketing strategy—they are proof of the success you promise your prospects. Showcasing inspiring alumni stories can motivate prospects to take action, especially those looking to follow a similar career path. Your school can choose to share these stories through various channels, including a blog post, a video, or an email blast when considering how to market education courses. 

Example: Oxford College takes this approach to highlight the impact of its Medical Office Assistant program. In the email example below, the school introduces one of its successful alumna and her personal experience: 

inbound marketing strategy for schools

digital marketing strategy for schools

Source: Oxford College

By choosing to share a direct quote, Oxford College can maximize the impact of its messaging and better appeal to prospects considering a similar career path. 

5. Creating Videos for Schools Exploring How to Market Education Courses on Social Media

By now, you’ve likely heard about the positive impact video can have on marketing for education. According to Wyzowl’s latest Video Marketing Survey results, video is part of an impressive list of statistics:

  • 92% of marketers view video as an “important part” of their marketing strategy
  • 87% of marketers believe video helped them boost traffic
  • 86% of marketers believe video helped generate more leads
  • 81% of marketers say video helped directly increase sales

Your school can use its video content strategy to highlight different aspects of its course or program. This can include the faculty, curriculum, nature of projects and assignments, objectives and outcomes, and even success stories, to name a few examples for schools wondering how to market education courses on social media. 

You can share this content on your school’s YouTube channel or release them on different social media networks (e.g. Instagram or TikTok). You can even use video to present, curate, and promote information—or even as a tool to generate excitement, introducing a sneak peek into what your school has in store for its prospects. 

Example: The Harvard Business School uses video to entice prospects and encourage student enrolment. The school shares the experience of attending an MBA Case Classroom, giving prospects a sneak peek into student life and the learning environment to generate their interest and appeal to their curiosity:

YouTube video

Create Live Events to Generate Interest in Your School’s Program

Live streaming can help you generate a lot of buzz around exciting new developments, including the launch of a new program. Your school can create a live info session or FAQ event on social media or video-conferencing apps to gauge interest in new initiatives. These events can help you generate more leads, allowing you to showcase your program’s unique selling points to an even bigger (and more engaged) audience.

Example: Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business hosts program-specific info sessions to attract prospects and answer any potential questions. By making these events available, the school can better connect with interested candidates and generate leads that could later result in more enrolments.

how to promote courses on social media

Source: Concordia University

Schools exploring how to promote courses on social media may also benefit from using live streaming. Instagram and Facebook Live offer great opportunities for your school to connect with its existing audience and engage more effectively with your prospects. 

To build awareness, your school can create a web page that introduces Facebook Live events, linking to your social media accounts—as seen below:

social media marketing

Source: Birmingham City University

In addition to sharing this information on your school’s website, you can begin creating social media posts that promote the event. This way, you can generate engagement and excitement around your promotional activities within your community. 

6. Develop Career Profiles for Impactful Education Marketing

Career profiles typically give your prospects an idea of what they can expect after completing your program. These profiles essentially provide your prospects with basic information on the potential careers and areas of employment that they can explore. Schools looking to apply effective education marketing strategies can also use these profiles to highlight how students can develop specific sets, preparing them for future career success.

By providing this information and making it clear and accessible, your school can help prospects looking to achieve their professional development goals. Doing so can help them feel more confident during the decision-making process.

Example: Wilfrid Laurier University has a web page dedicated to showcasing Career Profiles. Prospects can easily navigate the list based on their field of study. Once prospects select their subject, they can browse through another list of relevant careers and their respective program.

education marketing

Source: Wilfrid Laurier University

After clicking on one of those links, prospective students are redirected to a page that features a former graduate—showcasing their image, name, and current job title:

Higher Education Marketing

These profiles provide a more in-depth view of how former students navigated their career journey by using the skills and experience they gained from their program. Such stories can inspire and motivate your prospects, and it can be a more engaging way for your school to market its impact and value.

7. Consider Paid Advertising to Generate Leads and Boost Your Visibility

Running a paid advertising campaign can be an effective way to promote your program offerings. If you’re unsure how to advertise education programs, then you’ll want to begin by having clear goals, a specific target audience and a realistic budget. With a robust paid advertising strategy, your paid ads can help you stand out and attract the right prospects—allowing you to generate leads.

You can create Google Ads to appear at the top of the search engine results page for your target keywords or social ads, like Facebook ads, to appeal to your audience on social media. In either case, you’ll need to rely on your strategy to ensure that you pick the right advertising mix and placement, allowing you to generate results.

8. A/B Testing: Key Insights for Schools Considering How to Market Education Courses

Optimizing your efforts is an essential part of ensuring your continuous success, especially for schools working on promoting school admissions. Many aspects of your education marketing strategy can be optimized, including the visuals you use, the copy you write, and the audience you target.

A/B testing can give you the insights you need to make better marketing decisions. You can analyze how two different elements perform and select the most effective one by conducting these tests. This can be applied to your email marketing activities and social media posts. When it comes to marketing your program offerings, A/B testing can give you the data you need to make the right decisions and optimize your efforts for even higher ROI. With these steps in place, you can continue to effectively reach and attract more prospects.

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