Are you looking to attract more students to your school or program and to boost enrollments — and trying to do it without much budget for marketing? There are plenty of marketing strategies you can use that won’t cost money. Here are some ideas you can incorporate into your plan:
1. Publish useful and engaging content One of the best low-cost marketing ideas for your business is creating a blog and publishing relevant and engaging content for your prospective, current, and alumni students.. Blogging is cost-effective because you can essentially publish and promote your content for free. All it really costs is your time. You will just need to find one or more people on your team who can write, edit, and publish the content. (Check out our Content Creation Strategy one sheet for tips on how to analyze your market and craft targeted content.)
2. Use the power of your alumni and current students Ask alums and current students to give video testimonials and post them on your social media and blog. Consider approaching some key alumni about becoming ambassadors for your institution and tell their success stories for blog posts and videos. Not only is this very flattering for the alumni in question, but these real-life stories are very powerful ways of connecting with prospective students and showing them what might be possible if they choose to enroll at your school.
3. Social media + video = power combo Harness the power of both social media and video! Do a Facebook Live with your current students or alums. Among Facebook Live, YouTube Live, Periscope, and YouKnow, there are plenty of ways to live stream events like a behind-the-scenes sneak peek of your institution or instructional videos.
Here are just a few examples of the kinds of content that can work well:
Guided campus tours
Student, graduate, or staff testimonials
Videos highlighting particular programs
Videos demonstrating your school’s leadership in a particular area
Live video events
4. Recycle your content Just as you can repurpose existing data studies, you can rehash your old content into new creations as well! Turn a webinar into a video tutorial. Transform a collection of blog posts into an ebook. Never be afraid to mash-up your old content.
5. Host an event or class Plan an event or class to host, then print out flyers and post them on community bulletin boards (libraries, coffee shops, local colleges, and adult ed centers). These can also be hosted digitally, and you can use your social media channels as virtual bulletin boards.
6. Create instructional videos Video content is really valuable and powerful storytelling. Create an engagement around your school brand. Show the humans behind your school in the form of videos.
7. Collect email addresses and send out a newsletter Email marketing is a great way to get new visitors engaged with your website as well as maintain relationships with your existing students and alumni.
8. Run an online contest Promotional giveaways and contests are a tried-and-true way of building awareness and introducing your institution to prospective students.
9. Start a podcast To create a podcast, the only initial investment is a microphone and hosting. It’s a great way to build awareness, showcase your knowledge, and humanize your brand. Invite your current and/or past students and experts to join your podcast so that they can promote it to their friends and family.
10. Take advantage of Instagram and Pinterest Both Instagram and Pinterest are both great platforms to visually tell your brand’s story. Best of all, it costs nothing because you can just use the camera on your phone — and maybe some time for editing and uploading.
Turn your marketing game around with loads of creativity and a small budget! Couple these tips with suggestions from our Content Creation Strategy one sheet for increased effectiveness.