It is pretty rare that I meet a community college marketer that doesn’t think their marketing budget is too low. Of course, it is usually relative. I know some marketers that think their budgets are low, but yet other colleges would kill to have that budget. If you’re curious, the lowest budget I’ve ever seen was an annual budget of $1,500. There is a good story behind that one, but I don’t want to get side-tracked.
So, chances are that you feel your budget is too low. And you’re most likely right. No matter what your current marketing strategy consists of, I’m sure there are more things that you’d like to do, that you just can’t afford.
While there are things that you can do to increase your chances of getting a budget increase, that isn’t the subject of today’s video. Today, I want to talk about the importance of content, and how it can strengthen all of your marketing efforts, effectively improving your results without spending more money.
Content is a bit of an abstract term; it can mean a lot of different things. When I refer to content, I’m referring to things like videos, infographics, blogs, etc., that are incredibly helpful and relevant to your prospective students. Bits of content that they WANT to consume, as it truly helps them with their own goals, and helps them understand how your college can help them.
So often I see colleges investing lots of time and money into digital campaigns like Facebook Ads, YouTube ads, etc., but they focus on the ads themselves and nothing else. What happens when a prospect clicks your ad; what are you showing them?
Many of you have heard me say before how much of a mistake it is to ask them to “apply now” too early in their decision making process. The alternative to this is to show these prospects content that truly helps them, that is relevant to them and their needs.
Here are a few examples:
- A list of the top paying jobs in your area that can be achieved with a specific degree or certificate.
- The transfer requirements for four-year schools in your state that prospects may want to transfer to after attending your college
- What to expect when taking nursing courses
All of these examples provide help and guidance to your prospects, while indirectly promoting your college.
When you follow this approach, not only do you engage prospective students, but you actually make your existing ad spend more effective!
By generating a better engagement rate and click-thru rate, ad platforms like Google and Facebook will actually serve your ads more often, resulting in a lower cost per impression, a lower CPM. So, not only are you engaging prospects, but you’re actually getting more visibility and reach for the same or even less money.
Platforms measure how users interact with you after they click your ad, so the more interaction they see, the higher your ads score, resulting in them serving more frequently and for less money.
Content makes any campaign more effective, but as you can see, it literally boosts your performance by saving you money.
I truly believe that no campaign should be built without at least one piece of helpful, relevant content, and I see this belief vindicated time and time again with the hundreds of campaigns we strategize and execute each year at Rekrewt.