The education industry is a thriving business worth $19.4 billion. Tapping into this growing industry means there’s a lot of potential for your own institution to flourish.  And one of the best ways to do this, is by starting a well-thought out content management plan that includes a relevant and engaging higher education blog.

Maintaining a blog for higher education institutions can be challenging. And it can be overwhelming for those who are just dipping their toe into the whole process. But with a clear strategy, you will be able to create a successful blog that showcases your identity as a school and draw potential students.

Here’s how:

1. Start by setting clear goals

Like any project, setting clear objectives will help steer your blog in the right direction. But often, not planning your goals carefully will just lead to abstract and vague ideas of where you want your strategy to go. This is why it’s critical that you ensure your objectives are able to bring clarity and focus to your plans.

Focus on:

  • Getting to know your audience so that you can focus on creating content that will resonate with them.
  • Detailing numbers that you want to achieve. Set clear and feasible statistics that you want to reach.
  • Looking into what elements you will need to achieve these numbers. For instance, how many posts a week should you produce? How many guest authors do you want to tap?

Make sure that everyone who is involved in making and maintaining your blog is aligned with your  goals.

2. Create a content calendar

Once you’ve nailed down your objectives, you should have a clear picture of the topics you want to focus on. To keep thing organized, it’s important that you create a content strategy that will maintain the strategic intent of your blog, especially if you’re engaging multiple authors to produce content.

  • Format your calendar according to blog number, intended publishing date, title, topic, category and author for proper documentation and tracking.
  • Incorporate substantive keyword research into each post to ensure maximum visibility for each post.
  • If budget permits, tapping into content marketing experts who know the ins and outs of content creation will help you progress on your way towards establishing and creating consistent blog posts for your institution.

3. Set a style guide

Something as simple as formatting may seem unnecessary, considering all the planning that is going into your blog, but it goes a long way towards showing how much thought goes into your blog.

Here are common things to consider—

  • Make sure your font and size is consistent.
  • What established style guides should you follow—AP? Chicago? Or APA?
  • Ensure that images and videos are applied using the same treatment, format and size.

4. Put some thought into how you can build traffic to your blog

Once everything is ready for your blog, the important thing now is to make sure that you create enough visibility for it.

Try these ideas –

  • Engage influencers in your niche. For instance, if your higher education institution wants to focus on gaining potential student interest, don’t just reach out to the potential students. Tapping into local parenting communities may also help drive interest to your blog and institution.
  • Check out online forums. A lot of students who are trying to find schools today turn to Google and join forums to gain insight from others, who are in the same predicament as them. But be careful that you actually focus on providing meaningful conversation that will steer them towards your blog. Spamming them with ads and other useless information will likely turn them off.
  • Social media is a great platform for sharing information with your potential audience. You can repost your blogs on Facebook or Twitter to help drive interest to your latest posts on your website. Also make sure to answer all queries made via comments so that you are able to impart accurate information to them.

Keep in mind that this is a competitive industry. And to stand out from competition, you need to create a blog that will stand out from all the rest. And as you can see from the steps we’ve outlined above, this doesn’t have to entail something complicated and major. In a lot of cases, it starts out by having a simple and direct plan of action that spells out your next steps clearly.

Keeping your audience and turning them into loyal followers means you also have to be consistent with your efforts. But once you reap the rewards, it will be a rewarding endeavor.

If you think you need help getting started on an effective content marketing plan that will attract traffic and deliver conversions, give us a call today.

And if you have questions or clarifications, leave a message in the comment section below.