The above linked article describes the changing landscape of college and university advertising directed at recruiting high school students. The article describes how a variety of universities in Ohio are altering their ‘direct to student’ advertising to fit the interests of today’s high schools students. The article begins by stating that universities are still continuing their regular mailing programs but those programs are directed at parents and are not tailored for the student.
Rob Spademan, assistant vice president of university marketing at Cleveland State University stated that 90 percent of today’s high school students are watching online videos and 25 percent are on mobile devices daily. These numbers are the reason universities are starting to spend tens of thousands of dollars in social media marketing to recruit ‘social media savvy’ high school students.
When I was a junior in high school and began looking for universities I really did not pay attention to any of the regular pamphlets and post card style advertisements. I spent most of my time researching universities online or through campus visits. There is no doubt that social media is becoming a necessary part of running any successful business. Because more and more high school students are linking into social media at an earlier age, it is easier to reach them via a tweet or Instagram post than through email or by mail.
The article continues by describing CSU’s social media plan that included short videos instead of stand still banner ads. Because it is so easy to measure the outcome of social media plans via twitter and Facebook resources CSU was able to see some amazing results from their new social media campaign and they were mostly positive. “Research showed 91 percent of students took action as a result of watching a video, Spademan said,” and “all online efforts resulted in 857 applications, compared to 764 applications from other media…”
If this approach is working so well for universities in Ohio, it is bound to start a snowball affect and before we know it, there will be more and more universities utilizing better social media outlets to recruit high school students.