It’s time to get out the crystal ball. What will higher education marketing look like in 2016? Let’s prognosticate (what a great word.)
Snapchat, Periscope, & other emerging platforms will become the norm for reaching prospective students.
New platforms like these were once feared, but they’ll become fully embraced. More than ever, higher ed marketers will work to reach students where they live, and these emerging platforms present a golden opportunity. They’ll do their homework, prepare for the conversation and jump in. From Periscope campus tours to using Snapchat for promotion & contests, these platforms will take off, along with others we haven’t even heard of yet.
The generic 30-second admissions video will fade away.
What’s that? Your school has academic excellence? World-class facilities? Small class sizes? Good, but so does everyone else. There’s nothing wrong with sharing these ideas, but there’s a better way. Higher ed will toss out that old 30-second template and become more fearless in finding their voice and making an impression—like the University of Rochester did with “Remember oUR Name”:
Higher ed marketing video budgets will be bigger than ever.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, how much is a video worth? In 2014, Forrester said a minute of video is worth 1.8 million words (imagine it’s worth in 2016.) It’s predicted that video will account for nearly 70% of all internet traffic by 2017, so higher ed will keep stepping up their video game. Have you noticed your peers hiring more videographers and producing more high-quality, authentic video content? That’s no mistake. More than ever, higher ed will create shareable & authentic “moving pictures.”
Higher education marketers will learn how to promote non-traditional degree programs.
MOOCs, hybrid degrees, bootcamps—alternatives to traditional higher ed are taking an ever-growing chunk out of the brick-and-mortar market share. Non-traditional students made up 70 percent of undergraduates in 2013. Colleges and universities continue to change their approach to the programs they offer, and higher ed marketers will ride the wave and try new ways to present those programs to prospective students.
Colleges and universities will double their community management staff to be prepared for the conversation.
This just in–social media isn’t going away. (Shocker!) And schools are realizing the power of authentic, prompt interactions with their prospective students. Uversity said that about 66% of students’ college choices were affected by social media interactions. Schools will staff up, and equip their staff with a clear tone and preparation for potential pitfalls.
Let’s Sum It Up
I’m done going all Nostradamus. What do you think will be the emerging higher education marketing trends in 2016? Share your thoughts in the comments.