With the right team and a smart strategy, content marketing can help colleges and universities achieve myriad different objectives—from increasing donor dollars to boosting alumni engagement. And the same goes for achieving your enrollment goals. Want more qualified prospects inquiring about your school? More inquiries turning to applicants, and ultimately, matriculated students?
Here's why content marketing can do just that:
1. Content marketing brings students to you. With an understanding of what's important and relevant to your target audience, and a strategy in place to utilize what you know, you have the capacity to attract students by providing them with the information they're actively looking for. And when your institution is the one that answers all of the very pressing questions, like how to proofread an admissions essay or study for the GMAT, prospects may feel inclined to go one step further by reading about your list of academic program offerings, signing up for your mailing list, and planning a visit. (Like we said, you're bringing them to you.)
2. And when you want it to, it can attract a specific audience. Rather than casting a wide net with a broad advertisement or even an content marketing strategy that appeals to the masses, your content marketing approach can involve the creation of content that only certain people would want to read. Imagine you worked in enrollment for a law school, and you were trying to fill more seats in your LL.M. program. By producing content, an eBook for example, that was specifically written for foreign-trained lawyers interested in pursuing their LL.M. in the U.S., you'll reach the audience you need to achieve the prospect pool you're looking for.
3. You'll capture useful data. One of the reasons we love to create eBooks is because they can easily be gated behind a form. And on that form, it's up to you to determine which fields you want: contact information, intended entry year, area of interest, and so on. If your content promises value or is just the right amount of intriguing, prospects will willingly complete that form and become quality leads for you to then nurture through the enrollment funnel. It's a win-win: they get to view your content, and you get their contact information.
4. Content marketing can essentially be storytelling—and you no doubt have great stories. With new success stories, cool campus events, and advancements in education being made on your campus every day, content marketing is one of the only ways to keep your institution's story accurate and timely. Of course, direct mail and print pieces are still effective, but would you send out a brochure describing the success of last weekend's Spring Fest? With intriguing, up-to-date stories that capture student life on your campus come serious iniquiries, which just might turn your readers into matriculates.
5. You'll create information that's easily shareable. Content in the form of blog posts, eBooks, and infographics is both easy to digest and share, making the likelihood of your institution being recognized—and remembered—that much greater. With so many platforms to share content on, you have the potential to reach and attract a wide audience. (Not to mention, your alumni will love sharing their alma mater's successes with their professional networks.)
Want to learn more about content marketing? Download our complimentary eBook, Content Marketing for Higher Education 101.