2012 is expected to be the year smart phones and tablet computers will take over laptops. A recent survey shows that 98 per cent of students already own a cell phone, and that half of them are smart phones. The mobile revolution has started and educational institutions can no longer ignore it.
In fact, according to the same survey, even though only 13.1 per cent of universities currently offer mobile services, more than 70 percent of campus CIOs and senior IT leaders surveyed “agree or strongly agree” that “mobile […] apps are an important part of our campus plan to enhance instructional resources and campus services.”*. Mobile is the future for content delivery in educational institutions, for two simple reasons. It allows your institution to:
Literally meet your students where they are On campus and in-between classes, at the cafeteria, on the bus, mobile services enable you to communicate in-real time with your students while on the go. Your students cannot be expected to open their laptop to find out about their next class. They expect to have the same level of mobility as students as they have as consumers and want all the information they need to be available in their hand. Mobile services can help students find quick answer to questions such as: where is my next class? What is my class schedule for next week? Where can I find the books I need? Who is this professor? When is the next shuttle to the school? And how can I find out more about what’s going on around campus?
Strengthen your community and presence online
Depending on the type of content you decide to develop, your mobile services will be an excellent way to keep in touch with students, alumni and prospective students, to strengthen the sense of community in and out of campus. It will also be a great way to take part in the conversation about your institution or topics your institution is passionate about. Thanks to mobile services, students and alumni can be reached at anytime and join in the conversation. Their contribution to your university but also to your presence online is invaluable. Why not tap into that potential? It can be daunting to try and pinpoint the audience(s) you would like to reach or the content you would need to create so as to keep your targets interested.
Higher Education Marketing can help you create a mobile friendly or mobile website
Create a version of your website that is optimized for smartphones. This can simply be an extension of your website, or a much more sophisticated stand-alone version that is optimized and designed for the mobile Web experience. Both options will help provide a streamlined, mobile optimized presentation of your content that makes the mobile experience enjoyable (an example of this optimization would be to limit the amount of scrolling, for example).
Higher Education Marketing can help you create relevant mobile content
We can help you work on a mobile communication strategy for the specific audiences you wish to target and will help you create content that keep them interested. Thanks to our phased approach, you can start small and then use specific metrics to determine which content you need to develop more and which is less interesting. Here are some of the ways you can keep in touch with your students:
- Campus News and Events: informing students, prospects and alumni about news or exciting events taking place on- and off-campus;
- Campus Directory, where students can connect with students, professors and staff;
- Athletic schedules, scores, photos and videos;
- Links to the campus’ social networks.
This customized content can also include access to a personal class schedule, management of a personal library account, ability to book out a study room, or access a real-time status of all available computers across campus. The possibilities are endless to create both a community and personal mobile experience for your students, alumni and prospects. Contact us today to know more about our Mobile Marketing services.
The conversation continues….
EDUCAUSE dedicated its entire April/May entire issue to the mobile revolution. An interesting peek into how other higher education institutions tackle this new communication opportunity and the challenges it raises: http://www.educause.edu/EDUCAUSE+Review/ERVolume462011/EDUCAUSEReviewMagazineVolume46/226158 *Source: CampusTechnology.com, “Campuses respond quickly as the higher ed mobile marketplace takes shape,” April 2010