The Do’s and Don’ts of Digital Marketing for Higher Education

Digital marketing offers you a great return on investment, but you can always optimize it further. Here are some do’s and don’ts that can help higher education institutions of all sizes think about their digital strategies:

  1. Do Personalize

No one wants to read irrelevant messages, so make sure that you invest the time to know your audience so you can create content that they want to read. For example, if you send emails about the engineering program to prospective nursing students, they will feel that your institution may not apply to their goals.

  1. Don’t Overwhelm Your Audience

Digital fatigue is real, so people will tune you out if your messages are too frequent in any marketing channel. Too many emails will mean they don’t get read. Too many texts can turn off potential students.

  1. Do Diversify Your Techniques

Not every channel will reach every potential student, so make sure you have a good portfolio of tools to market your institution. SMS, email, social media, PPC ads, website content, direct mail, and in-person events are all ways to get your message out. As long as your messages are relevant and speak to your audience, they won’t mind seeing them on multiple channels.

  1. Don’t Neglect Email

Video is hot right now, and it’s great, but don’t underestimate the power of email to reach students, parents, and guidance counselors. In our recent survey of high school students, email outranked social media as the best channel to reach them—they pay the most attention to email.

  1. Do Create an Original Strategy and Content

The strategy you use for your institution needs to reflect your culture and offerings best, and with all the information you gather about your audience, you need to create strategies that will engage them. Creative content that informs can be one of your strong suits, as you have all kinds of education professionals within your organization. Tap them to create meaningful content that works in your overall strategy.

  1. Don’t Assume a Strategy That Works for Another School Will Work for You

It is tempting to look at competitors or similar institutions and consider copying some of their marketing strategies. However, each institution is unique, and what works for them may not work for you. Heck, you don’t even know which of their techniques is actually working for them.

  1. Do Involve Your Students

Offer prizes or giveaways to get students involved in marketing your school. Young people really respond to their peers, so getting student messages into any of your marketing channels can only help you reach your audience with more authentic and relatable content.

  1. Don’t Forget About Video

Short video continues to bring eyes to your messages. Use video in every channel that you can, including on your website, social media, emails, ads, and any format that allows for video. Something is compelling about moving images with sound (although don’t forget that many people watch with the sound off) that grabs your audience’s attention.


Contact us today to find out how we can help your institution level up its digital marketing strategy.


If you’d like to learn more about how we can help you adapt to the evolving education marketing landscape and ramp up your efforts, please contact us today.

Parent & Student Survey Whitepaper


The Annual PARENT & Student Survey

Advance Education conducted a nationwide survey to learn what students and their parents are looking for from institutions – and the right marketing channels to reach them.

Contact Us Icon

Let’s work together on your student enrollment strategy.

  • * indicates a required field
  • Hidden