How AI is Revolutionising Student Engagement and Acquisition

Joshua Stoneham
February 14, 2024

Education is at the forefront of the AI revolution, and providers can use it to their advantage to reach more students than ever, whilst offering outstanding comprehensive engagement and support service. 

With the power to offer students 24/7 chat support, auto-translated full-scale content and social media campaigns, how can providers utilise this technology and implement AI to make it a core part of their business model?

AI’s potential within the education space

Artificial intelligence is becoming a headline topic within almost every industry, but is it actually making an impact within education?

According to a report by Technavio, the global AI market in education is expected to grow by $3.68 billion during 2021-2025 at a CAGR of over 47%, demonstrating that AI will be a defining feature of education marketing over the course of the 2020s.

For some providers, embarking on an AI-led engagement strategy might seem like a difficult task, but trendsetters in the marketing and engagement space have provided a blueprint for using AI to its full potential, regardless of industry or market. 

AI allows for an evolution of student-targeted content. The days of generic, one-size-fits-all marketing strategies are numbered. AI opens the door to personalised newsletters, tailored content recommendations, and real-time messaging that can cater to the unique journey of a prospective student.

AI-Driven content creation: diverse and data-informed

One of the most significant advantages of AI in education is the ability to produce diverse, high-quality content rapidly. Content is the core of marketing, and AI enables providers to tap into an extensive pool of resources to create eloquent and engaging pieces that can resonate deeply with students.

AI-driven content creation tools use data analysis to understand trends, demands, and preferences to write tailored emails, social media posts, or even blog articles that are more likely to result in conversions. The analytical power of these systems ensures that your message is on point all the time, helping you speak to potential students in their language and on their terms.

Creator marketing platform CreatorIQ found that 66% of brands and agencies said they used AI over the past year, with 42% using it for social media captions and 36% for brainstorming. 

For smaller providers who are eager to open the floodgates when it comes to content and social media-led engagement strategies but don’t have the human resources or budget to achieve that goal, generative AI can be a marketing lifeline. 

Looking at a specific use within the education space, Duolingo launched a new, in-depth user interaction service that gives more detailed and personalised feedback for users that is entirely generated through AI. 

Through generative AI, providers can open up far more opportunities for user interaction and engagement without the need for existing marketing teams to spend valuable time creating content from scratch.

AI chatbots: The 24/7 prospective student companion

Students can be eager to learn more, but they don’t stick to regular business hours. An AI chatbot on your site can be the always-available point of contact, ready to provide the information, support, and guidance a student might need, regardless of the time.

More advanced than simple decision trees, AI chatbots harness natural language processing to understand a student’s queries and provide meaningful responses, even leading them through the application process. It’s a seamless experience, and this kind of convenience and accessibility can be a game-changer when it comes to student engagement and retention.

Providers might be concerned about leaving their student acquisition and enrolment process in the hands of an AI, but recent reports from IBM found that 60% of Gen Z students actually preferred interacting with chatbots to human representatives. 

AI Chatbots can be a powerful tool for education providers and can go far beyond a simple call-and-response engagement tool. Expedia’s ChatGPT-powered chatbot tool acts almost like a miniature search engine within their site, offering in-depth answers supported by the AI’s ability to pull information from the site, as well as the wider web, seamlessly giving a user an experience akin to an in-person interaction. 

This technology is particularly exciting for smaller providers who have limited resources or who are unable to run 24/7 student support. With the use of AI, small or medium-sized providers can compete with the enrolment and support services of some of the largest education providers in the world, all within an affordable budget.

Preparing for the AI educational marketing revolution

AI isn’t just a novelty or a luxury; it’s a necessity for any educational institution looking to excel in recruitment and student engagement. Using AI can allow education providers to revolutionise their marketing strategies and also continually refine and innovate how they can best serve the students of tomorrow.

Investing in AI can seem daunting, but early investment in this area can have a huge impact on education providers. By adopting these AI-driven strategies, providers are not just staying competitive; they are leading a transformation in how students engage with education.

Are you eager to learn more about the latest trends in martech and educational marketing? 

Follow our blog for regular insight into innovative marketing and engagement strategies, as well as updates on wider trends and news within the world of education. 

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Joshua Stoneham
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