The impact of content marketing for businesses is enormous. Yet there remains a sizeable gap between higher education institutions who make use of blogging to supplement their marketing efforts versus those who don’t.
Among institutions who said that they didn’t have a blog, 90% didn’t even plan on launching one, or were unsure about doing so. This means these institutions are missing out on a lot of potential business simply because they don’t recognize the real benefits of blogging.
What Can Blogging Really Do for Higher Education Institutions?
For institutions who do believe in blogging as an effective marketing medium, they understand that visibility on the internet is critical.
Through blogging, an institution becomes more accessible, and a high-ranking blog, populated with regularly published posts, relevant links and shareable content can significantly increase a school’s searchability on major search engines.
And when a bulk of your target audience is online, it’s likely that prospective students are relying on google to help them find the right institution to enroll and invest their education in.
Quite simply, without a consistent content marketing strategy in place—one that puts emphasis on blogging—schools are missing out on a prime opportunity to be discovered by potential students. They fail to gain higher web traffic or identify high-value prospects who ultimately, could be valuable additions to their institution.
So Why Don’t More Schools Have Blogs Already?
Barring their disinterest in the strategy or lack of awareness about the benefits of blogging, it’s an institution’s access to resources that prevents them from blogging.
Among the primary reasons cited was the overwhelming sense of work and responsibility that came with it. With limited staff members and resources, maintaining a blog means adding more to an already full plate.
According to the 2016 State of Blogging report, “the average blog post takes 3 hours 16 minutes write. That’s a 26% increase from last year.”
This kind of effort could certainly take up a lot of time from an already busy team.
Where Should You Go From Here?
What institutions should know, however, is that the perceived challenges of blogging are actually, manageable.
Despite the initial impression that adding blogging as an integral part of your institution’s marketing strategy can be overwhelming or prohibitive, there are in fact, ways that you can effectively execute this.
Consider hiring a dedicated writer or editor to manage your blog.
If budget permits, hiring a writer or editor to join your team could help you generate content and consistently publish material. Having an internal writer join the team means the writer has steady access to relevant topics straight from the source—teachers, students, the administration, and the campus. This helps give your blog a clear and distinguishable voice.
Explore available technology to help you manage and maintain your blog.
If hiring an additional team member isn’t an option, turn to technology.
Numerous communication tools available today are designed to foster collaboration and constant communication. This helps individual departments highlight important announcements, share relevant stories, and other important, blog-worthy material. Collaboration platforms such as task management platforms or messaging apps mean communication lines are constantly open, making it easier to find authors who can take on the week’s blog post, keep up with the school’s different events and accomplishments, and keep everyone involved in maintaining the blog up to date.
Try onboarding content marketing specialists.
One cost-effective option that you may have failed to consider is to seek external help.
Online marketing agencies that specialize in this kind of content production and generation exist specifically to create news-worthy and shareable content that help raise your visibility online and maintain your blog. They usually have a team of writers ready to learn about your institution’s needs and nuances to give your blog a distinct voice and collaborate closely with the institution.
Considering how internet-savvy today’s generation is, it’s likely that your target audience are all online. This means, prospective students are likely to use internet as a way to learn more about a school and what it has to offer, before making a decision.
In an article published in ecityinteractive.com, they note that “86% of college-bound seniors and 88% of college bound juniors use search engines to find college websites.” And if your institution isn’t as readily searchable as your completion, you’re missing out on a lot of opportunities.
To find out more about what we can do to help improve your visibility online, contact us today.
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