Digital Marketing: A boon to Educational Brands
Technological invasion is at its highest point. People no longer need to scroll through the Yellow Pages to search for an educational organization’s contact information. The days when most students, parents, or even teachers had to flip through newspaper ads to search for an excellent educational institution are long gone. In fact, most of the Generation Y is guilty of being too reliant on technology.
The education industry is one of the most essential sectors in society. It’s crucial for conventional education systems to bring their digital marketing A-game in order to attract the crème de la crème of young minds.
India has the world’s largest population of about 500 million in the age bracket of 5-24 years. This provides a great opportunity for the education industry to leverage. The Indian education sector is estimated at US$ 91.7 billion in FY18. It is further expected to reach US$ 101.1 billion in FY19. (IBEF)
The number of colleges and universities in India reached 39,050 and 903, respectively in the year 2017-18. India had 36.64 million students enrolled in higher education in the year 2017-18.
India has now become the second-largest market for e-learning after the US. According to research, the Indian education sector is expected to reach US$ 1.96 billion by 2021 with around 9.5 million users. (IBEF)
Why invest more in digital marketing?
Now, digital marketing is a part and parcel of the education sector mainly due to the pervasive presence of the internet and online media – whether brands like it or not. Just like other sectors, digital marketing has made its way into the education sector too.
Digital marketing comes bundled along with its several benefits. The major advantage of digital marketing over traditional marketing is undoubtedly the cost. The cost-per-click majorly benefits education brands by creating large savings, which, in turn, can easily be invested in other areas of the business.
Reach is another benefit of digital marketing. The significant difference here from using traditional media is the ability of brands to easily communicate with the consumer in both directions, i.e., it ensures efficient two-way communication.
Nowadays, it’s easier for a consumer to communicate directly with the brand through online platforms such as social media pages and forums.
These reasons alone directly result in high-conversion rates taking into account the sheer amount of youngsters present solely on digital platforms. Another advantage of going digital is the ability to track performance, manage brand awareness, and increase visibility.
Major Advantages of Digital Marketing in Education Sector
The Indian education sector is highly competitive. Students and parents prefer to know as much as they can about an institution before enrolling there. This mainly limits the use of print and TV advertisements, because here the message delivered is constrained by information and time.
Hence, they rely on the internet to research about the institutions, compare between them and make the best choice possible. Students today have a strong and active presence on social media. Hence, enhancing SEO and investing in content generation are some of the methods through which digital marketing is transforming the education sector.
There are several reasons why your educational brand must pioneer the use of digital marketing to beat out competitors in the education sector. They are:
1. Highly economical.
Some conservative educational institutions still utilize flyers, radio ads, TV ads, billboards, or newspaper ads. However, digital marketing still outshines traditional marketing because of costs.
Investing in social media digital marketing campaigns, for example, is cost-effective and controllable. Plus, the different online marketing tools can help leverage each campaign for more conversions at lesser costs.
2. Ability to reach a large number of audiences compared to conventional marketing.
Digital marketing is pertinent as the potential stakeholders, i.e. students, spend a lot of their time on online platforms.
Approximately 93% students in India have internet accessibility with an average internet consumption rate of four hours per day. (Livemint)
3. Develops brand awareness by having a strong presence on social media.
Online marketing in the education industry also means boosting social media presence to efficiently reach out to as well as communicate with their audience in a way physical interactions can’t.
4. Personalized Marketing Approach.
Digital Marketing allows you to know what academic programs your prospective students want to learn more about, you can target them and provide specific information relating to it, as well as other academic offerings that might be of interest to them.
5. Higher Conversion Rates.
TV ads can get significant screen time in vast geographical locations. Digital marketing can also do this at more affordable costs. Geotargeting is a feature that allows smaller education establishments to precisely target their audience without spiking up their ad spend.
Moreover, this will allow interested prospects to do the “next step” in your marketing campaign.
Whether your objective is for brand awareness or enrolment, a strategic call-to-action button will provide easy access for students who want to join a particular learning community.
6. Trackable and Modifiable.
The core advantage of digital marketing, in every industry, is that every marketing campaign is trackable and modifiable. The internet is saturated with different tools such as analytics tools to monitor different campaigns.
Advertisers can also set their objectives and modify their campaigns if they are unfavourable. This way, they can minimize losses and save their campaign budget for other outperforming marketing campaigns. This method is highly beneficial for those off-season months in the education industry.
There is no doubt that digital marketing is paving the way for educational institutions. Through carefully-executed digital marketing campaigns, the education industry will undeniably see digital advancements in the near future.
Other salient features of digital marketing are:
7. It simplifies consumer behaviour analysis and performance tracking processes.
8. Digital marketing ‘informs’ about a product, rather than ‘selling’ it.
9. It helps to continuously nurture the stakeholders in the education sector. For example, four out of five students in India regard the internet as the ‘main source of information’ to access their course-related topics. Thus, investing in digital marketing means strengthening your brand equity.
India holds an important position in the global education industry. It has one of the largest networks of higher education institutions in the world. However, there is still a lot of scope for further development in the education system.
Digital Marketing took over the world of marketing like a storm, and it’s here to stay. If this opportunity is exploited efficiently, the returns from educational investment in digital marketing can be tremendous.
As discussed earlier, digital media is revolutionizing the education sector at a rapid rate. Education, being such an important aspect worldwide, is flourishing mainly due to its digital marketing trends.
1702 Digital can help your educational institution create a digital presence. The Indian education sector needs to increase its scope in order to appeal to the youth, who have switched to the digital world for almost everything.