The best way to attract prospective students and get them to apply is through marketing – but not just any marketing. You’ve got to put your best foot forward and target your audience for exactly who they are. But how do you find out who they are? How do you get to know them, and what they want? These are things you have to know in order for your message to resonate. You’ve got to speak your audience’s language, and that starts with knowing exactly who you’re talking to.
To get to know your audience, you’ve got to think of your target demographic and what problems they’re encountering. Ask yourself – how does their problem relate to my institution?
Is your audience looking for a school that accommodates their unique schedule and allows them to further their career? Is your audience looking for a four-year degree that begins right out of high school? These are questions you should have the answers to. That way, you have an idea of how such problems make your audience feel. From there, you can implement a hopeful solution.
If the audience followed your plan, what would success look like? This is information that they should gain right away from your message.
All in all, your marketing message should rely on a story format with your audience as the main character. By applying such a structure to your marketing efforts, they’ll be more effective and they’ll reach your audience on a deeper level. It’s your job to define the problem for your audience – in this case, the student who is seeking higher education – and provide your program as a viable, desirable solution. Once you take this step, you’ll understand your target audience and, therefore, you’ll understand what they want – and you can offer it to them.
It’s all about creating the framework of a story for your audience – your prospective students. By inviting them to participate in your story, you’re including them on the journey where success is the end result. Show them that such an achievement is possible when they join your program, and you’ll reach your target audience exactly in the way you hoped.