There’s no denying that COVID-19 arriving on the scene has made a massive impact on our world. It’s required many industries to undergo quick digital transformation.
The immediate implication on education is obvious – that schools and campuses emptied and classes moved online very quickly. While we’ve all become quickly familiar with the concept of Zoom learning, many haven’t considered is COVID-19’s impact on marketing education to prospective students, both for schools and tertiary and vocational institutions.
Before the pandemic, many educational institutions were in the beginning stages developing their digital marketing efforts and investing in areas such as online counselling, virtual campus tours, and educational webinars.
In Datisan’s 2019 Digital Marketing Maturity survey, we found that two-thirds of tertiary education providers were focusing their marketing efforts on upper-funnel targeting at the time. This meant that just one-third of all educational institutions surveyed were utilising full-funnel strategies to engage with their targeted audiences at different stages of the student journey.
In the same survey, only 15% of education providers responded that they confidently knew who they were talking to and when.
Additionally, a huge 85% of education respondents were not consistently using a combination of first and third-party data to deliver more tailored messaging to niche and targeted online audiences, instead opting to speak to broader markets.
This is only exacerbated by the fact that our report found that 75% of respondents in education don’t link their online and offline customer journeys to their digital marketing activities.
In the wake of the pandemic and lockdown, entire schools and universities have transitioned to online learning, streaming classes onto screens in the homes of students across the world. Other essential aspects of the student experience have also moved online in the pandemic, such as graduation ceremonies and campus tours.
What does the pandemic and remote learning mean for the marketing of education, and can it pivot as quickly as its service delivery?
With no clear end to the pandemic in sight, and while travel restrictions keep international students at home, education providers will need to turn their attention to the domestic student market.
Education providers ought to turn their attention to refining and targeting niche audiences in order to direct their messaging to the right prospects.
The future of marketing for education institutions may still be a little foggy, but by investing in deep-dive customer journey research and infusing that data into intelligent, targeted online performance marketing campaigns, the marketing of our educational institutions will be in good stead.
To find out how your education institution can utilise data-driven online marketing, get in touch with Datisan today.
To find out how you can set your brand up to create, target and refine online and offline audiences, get in touch with Datisan today.
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