5 Methods to Attract Students via Content
Content marketing is one of the best ways to engage customers and boost your brand presence, but when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of the content you create it can be hard to determine how it brings value to your company.
Whether it’s an article, video, graphics or interview; it’s easy to get carried away in the creation of content and forget what the primary focus is.
If you’re spending time and money on creating content but failing to see any real results, here are some of the best ways to reach students and motivate them to pursue their education and career goals. One thing worth noting, is that it’s not about the financial value you get from a piece of content in the short term– effective content is all about improving the lifetime value of a customer.
This might seem an obvious one but the power of social media is often overlooked or misunderstood. One thing that we’ve noticed through our social media strategy is that followers interact with content at a much higher rate when there is no hard-sell. So where’s the value in these if there’s no way of getting visitors to your website? Simple. Engagement posts have two main objectives:
Social platforms like Facebook are one of the best ways of allowing your audience to explore your company and offerings on their own terms, watching how others comment and interact and altogether shaping their perception of you as a trusted educator.
Our engagement posts, usually in the form of simple inspirational quotes, have four times more engagement with our followers than link posts do. Earning likes, shares and comments organically.
We have seen a 645% increase in the number of people who have liked our Facebook page through an engagement post, as opposed to a post that links to a course.
Inspirational quotes are one of the highest organic drivers of engagement across our social channels
Remarketing With Content
Content has much more long term value than simply generating student enquiries. It can also be an extremely valuable retargeting tool. If a prospective student has visited your site, only to leave without enquiring or finding out more information; you now know what they’re interested in learning about. This allows you to better market to this potential student across the web by serving them content you KNOW they’re interested in.
Instead of directing them back towards a particular course on your site, an informative and insightful article on career and job outcomes in an industry can be a great tactic; and one that can produce great results. Not only is it more of a ‘softer sell’, but it can be seen by your audience as less intrusive than typical advertisements.
Through remarketing with content, we experienced a 15% increase in return visitors to a course.
The Value of Social Proof
If you want your content to really resonate with your readers and motivate them to act on their desire to further their education; then harness the power of real stories. Student stories, interviews and testimonials should be the cornerstone of your content strategy, as these are the best tools to show you can relate and understand the needs of your target audience.
Job outcomes and ‘successes’ from past students can really concrete a prospective student’s willingness to study. The course outcome, rather than the content is what seems to resonate the most with students, so it’s important to keep this in mind when you write your content plans. Whether it’s incorporated through an article on a career in accounting, or on it’s own; delve through your past students and see what stories you can find.
Using a social proof ‘pop up’ on our site also lead to an increase in student conversion by 4.5%, so we know social proof is effective, especially in education.
The Influencer Affect
Influencer marketing is one of the growing trends in content and SEO. Not only do they improve authenticity, but having an influencer or expert in the field collaborate with on a project is a great way to have your brand seen as more credible.
With plenty of call-out websites like SourceBottle appearing on the net, it’s easier than ever to connect with industry experts. Attaching a familiar face to a career outcome is a fantastic way of generating interest and making a seemingly bland piece of content more interesting.
Using a well-known figure to be the ‘face’ of your content is a great way to drive traffic
Capture Attention in a Visual Way
Video is dominating at the moment and the likes of Google and Facebook are making it abundantly clear it’s the future. Not only can it really improve your website in terms of SEO, with Google becoming more comfortable showcasing videos in search results, it’s also the perfect format for maintaining a viewer’s attention (people don’t like reading anymore!). When watching a video, you retain 95% of the intended message, compared to just 10% when reading text. For SEO, it’s also a game changer. Landing pages that feature a video are 53% more likely to rank on the first page of search results.
Using Video in Your Content Strategy:
Of Information is Retained
Higher Chance of Ranking in SERPs
Despite its growing popularity, video content is still often avoided by most small and medium businesses, (because it can be daunting – assumption is that is it’s difficult to produce high quality, time consuming and expensive). But it can have the highest ROI if executed properly and there a number of great tools out there to help you create great quality, cost-effective video; i.e Promo, Moovly and Animoto having extremely cost-effective video creation tools, there’s no reason why video can’t form part of your content strategy.
There’s no need to create a new video around an entirely new topic; but instead, think of ways to adapt your existing content into a video format. On average, Facebook videos reach just over 12% of your total page followers, double that of link posts . They also have the highest level of engagement compared to other content formats.
If content has never been much of a focus in your digital strategy, it might be time to reconsider. With a long-term focus and using a range of content mediums; you can add rich value to your digital presence in no time.