Increase Enrollment: 6 Proven Strategies For Higher Education Marketing
According to National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, enrollment is down for the sixth straight year. What does this mean for your higher education institution? It means you should be dedicating time to your higher education marketing strategies and your brand.
Before you make any plans, you have to think of your students. Know your student body and more importantly, know what they want. Many student surveys show that the most important things to students when choosing a university are: high-quality teaching, scholarships, well ranked, welcoming to international students, and a prestigious brand.
When you think of a prestigious brand, many think of Harvard, and their reach is proof: Harvard is miles ahead of all higher education institutions on social media, with 5.3 million likes on Facebook, ~800k followers on Instagram, ~900k followers on Twitter, and almost 80% enrollment rate of students accepted.
However, building up a strong brand for your college or university that will lead to more interested students will take work. Consider some proven strategies to bring new life to your higher education marketing.
1. Shine with the expertise of your world class professors and resources
Despite popular belief, students actually want to know that they will learn something at your university. If their only peek into your school’s actual curriculum and classroom culture is Rate My Professor, maybe it’s time to take control of the narrative.
Produce some short form video or make a blog and let the expertise and passion of your faculty shine. Establish your institution as a source of up to date information and technology, not just for students, but for the community at large.
Marketing open online courses is an excellent way to achieve this. Many schools, including Emory University, understand the benefit of their professors reaching interested students outside of their campus community, that can potentially become students after taking a captivating course.
Emory has a partnership with the online course provider Coursera, and it’s been a global success. These popular courses provides potential students not only a peek into the vast variety of educational paths available at this school, but it also provides insight into its selection of knowledgeable and very in-demand faculty.
(Left: Emory University shared an article from their own news center about their Coursera courses, Right: potential students scrolling through Emory’s Coursera courses will see high ratings and great reviews)
2. Emphasize outreach campaigns
It’s nothing new for schools to focus on outreach campaigns for possible donors, but this can be used for prospective students to see what types of scholarships your school offers and your school’s future projects. The best way to do this? Be loud about your campaign.
Look at Northwestern University’s long running We Will campaign. They very clearly lay out the goals, priorities and projects for each area of study and the larger school community, using a dedicated site with great graphics, a well produced short film, and #NUWeWill social posts that reach far beyond potential donors. This gives potential applicants a chance to see that your school goes to great lengths to make sure their students can attend regardless of their financial background.
(Northwestern’s graphics on the dedicated website of their outreach campaign cleanly and clearly shows off its success)
3. Show off your successful alumni
Applicants want to feel secure in your school’s ability to lead to a successful post-graduate career. This is the place to let your alumni success stories shine. Take Wellesley College’s “This Is The Place” campaign. The campaign’s featured film includes notable alumni speaking on the personal impact of their great alma mater. The film features figures like Diane Sawyer and Hillary Clinton. If you can spotlight alumni that have had a large impact on the world, it can greatly affect the decision of prospective students.
(Wellesley College’s “This Is The Place” campaign video successfully highlights their current students and their pretty notable alumni)
4. Be authentic with diversity campaigns
It’s so easy to insert a few photos of students of different shades and backgrounds smiling under a tree wearing school merchandise. Showing your school’s [real] diversity is much better than telling. A recent example is #YouAreWelcomeHere, a campaign that colleges and universities around the country are participating in to support international students. With the reach of so many students across various universities, the campaign went viral. Not only does each school spread this campaign, the message rings clear for incoming and prospective students of each school:
5. Listen to students and alumni to strengthen brand awareness
Many college branding strategies blend into each other, and if you’re not listening to what the students who actually experience the school have to say, you won’t see what makes your school unique. When incoming students want to see what makes your school special, they don’t ask advisors or professors or parents–they ask current students and alumni friends and family. When they go on a college tour or stay with a student overnight, they want to see the students in their natural environments. Your marketing strategies should be no different.
Professionally shot, staged candids can be great for more official school campaigns, but what will really get the attention of interested students is seeing students on social media having fun, going to school sporting events, and participating in cool opportunities related to their studies. User generated content is a great opportunity for your school’s brand on social media, and you can curate that content from related hashtags. You can also host school giveaways or contests on Instagram (the platform has official guidelines to follow, however) that encourage UGC using specific hashtags in order to win.
University of Michigan’s slogan “Go Blue” works very well as a brand hashtag. #GoBlue overflows Instagram, with over 1.3 million posts using the tag, and much of it actually relates to the school or its sport teams. User generated content drives their alumni feed, and #GoBlue is part of how they can track them:
Longer, more complicated hashtags don’t spread as far and won’t be used as much beyond your own content. The goal with these more concise hashtags is to add to the amount of user generated content surrounding your brand. Start using your school slogan or a shortened version of it more often, and monitor how its used by current students and alumni, then plan strategies around that.
During graduation season, University of Miami did something similar, asking students to share their photos using #canegrad on Instagram and Facebook to be featured on their official page:
(In the days following their Instagram post, #canegrad was used in over 500 posts)
6. Use trending topics to boost your school’s reach
Larger schools may have an advantage when it comes to viral content through the star power of their alumni and their speakers, but that’s no reason you can’t jump on hot trends and become a force on social media. Use your own events as a source. If you have a speaker coming to campus that has quite a following, plan a good amount of content that will speak to your students as well as their audience. Plan video around them, go live when they’re on campus, be ready to catch fun moments.
Even if your school isn’t a big name, trending social media challenges are typically a great way to showcase campus fun and get your brand in front of a larger audience of social media users. UW Milwaukee did just that with the viral Justin Timberlake “Can’t Stop the Feeling” dance challenge, featuring graduating seniors. Their Youtube video was viewed almost 300,000 times and received a tweet from Justin Timberlake, who has over 66 million followers.
(A tweet from Justin Timberlake got UW Milwaukee’s “Can’t Stop The Feeling” dance challenge almost 4,000 retweets)
Now take a look at your own school and what makes your school its own. Market that as much as you can. What are some of those things? What strategies do you plan to focus on? Let us know!
5 Healthcare Marketing Tips To Keep Your Practice On Top
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In the hyper-competitive healthcare industry, it is easy for your practice to get lost in the sea of others online, limiting your reach to potential patients. We work with a variety of clients that offer healthcare services, so we want to share 5 healthcare marketing tips to keep your practice relevant in 2018.
1.CREATE RICH CONTENT
Make sure you are delivering rich content that provides value to your patients. This could be related to your practice’s social media pages, like going live on Facebook to show off your expertise on a hot healthcare related topic or a social media campaign featuring new state of the art technology your office is using. Your practice’s website is another crucial platform to utilize. Create some great video walkthroughs of your office, video of your services, then display them all over your site—get creative! Choose images that will really grab the attention of potential clients.
Be creative when explaining your services. Is there something that your practice offers that’s outside of the usual? Focus some attention on that. Determine what your tone will be when communicating to your target audience (informative, friendly, humorous, professional), then be consistent with that across all platforms.
2.OPTIMIZE GOOGLE MY BUSINESS
Google My Business allows business owners to manage their presence on Google. This platform allows patients to leave reviews and ask questions, which could be invaluable for fine tuning your services. It also provides them with hours of operation and phone numbers, bettering the user experience for your incoming patients. Bonus: you also increase the chances of your practice being found in a Google search. Give your patients all the information they need to find your business and increase your practice’s exposure.
3.USE FACEBOOK PIXEL
Advertising on Facebook is also great for increasing your reach among a target audience that could be interested in your services. If you’ve already started advertising, you can optimize your ads/ad targeting with better insights on your audience. For this, try Facebook Pixel, an analytics tool that adds code to your website to measure the behavior of those who visit your website. It also allows you to build advertising audiences from your site visitors and make sure your ads are being shown to the right people. Knowing when a potential patient took an action after seeing your Facebook ad can definitely help you determine what is and what isn’t working, and create better campaigns for your practice.
Chatbots are computer programs designed to simulate a conversation with human patients. With the rise in demand of instant gratification, patients want answers about your practice quickly. What do customers and patients alike want? They want the ability to message a business. This could be even more crucial for a patient who needs a response immediately after a medical emergency. If you don’t have the manpower in your office for this, try implementing a chatbot that responds to FAQs, and increase the user experience of your practice. Healthcare marketing just got a lot easier.
Why are we still filling out long paper forms in 2018? This simple optimization tactic can transform your practice. Before you sink completely into digital marketing, bring your practice to 2018 by switching to digital forms. This will decrease wait times and increase productivity, and give you more time for planning strategies to reach more people. You can implement a digital scheduling system for health systems and independent practices like DocASAP and ClockWise to help manage all your appointments. Save the planet, get rid of all those paper forms, and stay within HIPAA patient privacy provisions all at once.
Did you find this healthcare marketing infographic helpful? Share with your friends. Leave a comment and tell us which technique you are going to start with!
How To Instantly Increase Ecommerce Sales With The 5 Best Shopify Apps
People have been searching high and low for the secret to success when it comes to finding a way to increase ecommerce sales. Every ecommerce entrepreneur at one point or another has been faced with the dilemma of not being able to know what they’re doing wrong or why their sales aren’t improving.
We know the answer.
Not using Shopify apps can kill conversions when it comes to ecommerce sites. Utilizing the best Shopify apps available is your ticket to success when it comes to making those sales numbers soar.
Take A look At The 5 Best Shopify Apps Your Ecommerce Site Desperately Needs
1 ) LiveNinja
When it comes to chatting with customers online, elegance and simplicity is everything.
That’s exactly what LiveNinja had in mind when they knocked their live chat design out of the park.
One of the best functionalities is that the LiveNinja app allows you to message customers on-the-go with their focus being tailored to the mobile generation.
Some of the amazing features of that make LiveNinja one of the best Shopify apps include:
- The ability to capture leads quickly and seamlessly as no signup is required.
- How easy it is to follow up those leads with mobile SMS transfers once they have exited your site.
- Automatically receiving an SMS phone number that customers can text you at.
Easy to say that LiveNinja, an app that was developed by yours truly at Pacific54, has been proven to increase ecommerce sales with it’s simplistic yet beautiful live chat experience.
Get LiveNinja Here
2) Wishlist Plus
The wishlist function is essential for ecommerce growth.
It allows customers to track products they want but can’t purchase at that given moment but wish to buy at a later time.
The holy grail of wish list apps is Wishlist Plus developed by Swym Cooperations.
The reason why this is one of the best Shopify apps is because nowadays, purchase journeys commonly span over multiple sessions & multiple devices. Being able to track that journey is difficult for stores to achieve – which is where Wishlist Plus comes in.
Wishlist Plus allows users to add desired products to a wishlist that will follow them across multiple devices without requiring the customer to log in. Letting users “pick up where they left off” increases the likelihood that customers will follow through and make a purchase from their Wishlist.
Some features of Wishlist Plus are:
- Easy customization allowing you to make the look and feel of the wishlist match your brand perfectly.
- Real-Time metrics displayed on the smart dashboard so you can monitor and track all customer activity.
- Shareability of the list with friends or family.
Integrate the Wishlist Plus app in a seamless fashion and watch firsthand an improvement of sales.
Get Wishlist Plus Here
3) Conversio (previously Receiptful)
“All the functions of Conversio are really really great. I quit 2 apps after adding Conversio because Conversio makes all the stuff better, faster, easier and cheaper and is bringing more money to me.” – Julie Fourel @ Joope
The all-in-one marketing dashboard allows Shopify store owners to handle numerous areas of their business and increase ecommerce sales from the efficiency of one simple app.
A few of the available tools of Conversio are:
- A consolidated email dashboard, where you can send receipts, newsletters, abandoned cart emails, and more from one convenient place.
- Product reviews and recommendations based on customers’ individual purchase history.
- A search functionality that helps users find exactly what they are looking for.
- The opportunity to hear feedback on your store and user experience from the people who matter most – your customers!
Start your 30-day free trial and once the trial is complete you can decide to continue with their paid services.
The cost varies month to month and depends on the amount of orders you process that month.
A slower month on your end will translate to lower charges on theirs. A fair model – which is exactly why we consider Conversio one of the best apps available for Shopify.
4) Back In Stock
Time and time again Shopify site owners see all their work, money and time spent driving traffic to their page be washed away simply because a product goes out of stock.
With Back in Stock, one of the highest rated apps in the entire Shopify app store with over 140 5-star reviews, customers will be instantly alerted via email once a product they wanted becomes available again.
“Measure Demand, Not Just Sales”
This Shopify app features a dashboard that allows site owners to increase sales by understanding which products are in high demand by customers via weekly or monthly reports. This functionality allows owners to order more of in-demand items, and features a customizable template for back in stock alert emails.
With an installation that literally takes less than 30 seconds to set up, on all relevant pages with items that aren’t currently available, a button will be featured that reads “email me when available” mitigating the sadness of the customer who isn’t able to get the product they want.
Get Back in Stock Here
5) Product Reviews Addon by Stamped.io
If you are a ecommerce site owner, than you are well aware of the disadvantage you face compared to brick and mortar stores where customers have the luxury of being able to try on and see, in person, the products they wish to purchase.
So it goes without saying that one of the main details that potential customers look for are positive reviews from their peers.
An educated shopper looks to see what others have said about the product. I know I do. It makes the customer significantly more confident in their purchase if they know that others approve of the product.
The Product Reviews Addon not only minimizes the time spent requesting reviews from customers by automatically emailing them after a purchase, but also allows you to display the reviews with pictures and videos.
Products with reviews, as said earlier, are shown to increase conversion by 30%, while reviews with videos and pictures are proven to show a 90% increase in conversions!
What better way to increase ecommerce sales?
Get Product Reviews Here
Have you ever used any of these Shopify apps? Comment below and let us know your experiences, especially if you think we missed something amazing!
If you have an idea for a Shopify app or another custom project, contact the team at Pacific54 and let us do what we do best!
Facebook Retargeting – Traffic Shoe Case Study
When they came to Pacific54, Traffic Shoe wanted to boost sales by leveraging their Social Media Advertising platforms as well as their existing consumer base.
Traffic Shoe as a brand is all about the hottest shoes at the best prices. Starting in Miami, Florida in 1989 with just one store, Traffic has now grown to over 20 stores in major malls across the East Coast.
With help from Pacific54’s digital marketing strategy and Facebook Retargeting, Traffic Shoe was able to grow their online sales by 300 percent.
How? Through the strategy of Dynamic Retargeting Advertisements.
What is Facebook Retargeting?
Targeting is gathering desired consumers for a company based on demographics, location, interests, and behaviors. By combining these characterizations, a company can create audiences that match that company’s campaign goals.
By targeting these audiences, companies are able to reach the consumer groups that are most likely to be interested in their products and drive these people to visit their website.
However, for most sites, only 2 percent of first-time visitors result in conversions.
Retargeting is the digital strategy of advertising to individuals in your audience who have already shown interest in your company or visited your website.
With this strategy, companies can tailor their advertisements to better engage consumers who have shown interest but are not converting. This is especially useful in the case of e-commerce retailers who want to boost online sales.
With Facebook retargeting, online stores can easily direct ads to website visitors who viewed a product or added it to their cart without actually making a purchase.
This is a helpful graphic to explain the whole process:
Pacific54’s Facebook Retargeting Strategy
To increase Traffic Shoe’s sales revenue among existing customers, Pacific54 implemented a Dynamic Facebook Retargeting Strategy to reach potential consumers in more personable ways.
The goal of Dynamic Facebook Retargeting for Traffic Shoe was to advertise to the consumers who had viewed an item or put that item in their cart, but never followed through with the purchase.
Using data from Traffic Shoe’s Facebook Pixel, Pacific54 was able to retarget these consumers with specific ads pertinent to the exact items customers had added to their cart, or the styles of shoes that they were browsing.
Through consistent testing and optimization, Pacific54 was able to increase Traffic Shoe’s website views by 17 percent, as well as increasing dynamic retargeting sales by 301 percent between Q1 of 2016 and Q1 of 2017.
How exactly did we do it?
Contact Pacific54 today to find out!
Power & Psychology Of Color In Advertising
Do colors make you feel a certain way or bring back specific memories for some inexplicable reason? Does seeing red provide a feeling of alertness as seeing blue eases your stress and anxiety?
Colors not only attract and stimulate the senses but they’ve also been playing a major role in creating alluring marketing campaigns for a very long time. Skilled Marketers and Graphic Designers alike have mastered the art of successfully implementing colors to influence potential customers by becoming experts on the psychology of color in advertising.
Marketing is often referred to as an art form, which it truthfully is. Having the ability to take a blank slate (browsing shopper) and turn it into a masterpiece (loyal customer) is indeed a talent.
Understanding when and how to utilize colors to subconsciously alter a person’s mood is a technique that, when used correctly, can turn masses to buyers with ease. Gifted Marketing Agencies, such as Pacific 54, know this firsthand as they’ve been harnessing this craftsmanship for years.
It is pivotal for marketers to consider the psychology of color in advertising as “research shows that the proper use of color increases brand recognition by 80%. It also raises the visual appearance by 93%. A further 85% of consumers buy because of color” says Color Psychology.
Here is a list of 5 colors and descriptions as to why they increase sales and how they stimulate emotion.
– The color Red is most directly linked with the sense of urgency and power. It stands out, it’s bold, and most importantly, it grasps the viewer’s attention. That’s why Red often coincides with sales & promotions. Red symbolizes passion, it evokes energy and increases the heart rate.
– The preferred color for men, Blue is used to capture the feeling of calmness and tranquility. It creates a feeling of trust and security for shoppers. As opposed to red, blue calms people down and eases anxiety. It is associated with companies that need to exude confidence and reliance.
– Affiliated with nature, peacefulness, and growth, Green is often used when companies want to emit a welcoming warm feeling. When used in stores, it used to attract kind friendly customers.
– Yellow is a double-edged sword. If used in the right balance, yellow can create a feeling of cheerfulness. If used too much, it creates sensations of anxiety and uneasiness. Used to direct the viewer’s attention and primarily to attract impulse buyers & window shoppers
– Black has a wide range of versatility. It can be used to set a modern exciting tone, or be applied for a more classic even-tempered setting. It provokes a feeling of luxury and class. It’s intimidating. It dominates the high-end market with subtle yet significant clues. When used properly, black can be extremely efficient.
Finding an Internship That’s Right For You
Why Are Internships So Important?
When you’re on the hunt for a dream job, it’s important that you already have experience in the work world.
Whether you are currently a student still weighing your options or a graduate looking to start a career – finding an internship that is right for you to help guide you on your way is crucial for your success.
Let’s face it, everybody needs to start somewhere. Internships are the perfect opportunity to get your foot in the door.
They teach you the basics of a field that you may be interested in. They also they show you the proper ways to behave in an office setting.
If you’re a student or recent grad looking for a little something extra to do, why not find an internship?