Using Social Media to Recruit College Students | Part 2
Once you’ve built a social environment where prospective students can engage with your admissions team, it’s time to utilize each platform to generate quality leads.
Start by finding out who is already reaching out to your school on social media. You can do this by simply searching for your school’s name. Filter for any comments or questions directed at the admissions team, this would include engagement like questions about the application process and/or student life. If the prospective student is communicating with your university’s main channels, have them referred to your new admissions handles so you can manage the funnel from start to finish.
It’s also important to note that people won’t always tag you in their posts when addressing your school in social conversation. Be sure to monitor for when your school isn’t mentioned directly on your page but performing searches for your school’s hashtags, abbreviated name or any nicknames your school may have. For example, Connors State College can also be found by searching “Connors State” and “#ConnorsState”.
Take a look at this tweet that shows a new student’s excitement upon acceptance to MidAmerica Nazarene University without actually tagging the school:
This would have been a really great opportunity for the admissions team to engage socially if they had found it.
Another recommendation for finding potential students is to monitor for education phrases and search terms.
Some prospects may not mention your school by name (or even any school by name), but they’re online speaking with intent just waiting for someone to interact with them. These opportunities can be powerful for capturing the attention of an undecided potential student.
Try monitoring social media for keywords such as “best colleges,” “college applications,” “great universities to attend” and other related phrases that people starting the college selection process might be using online.
One last tip, don’t be afraid to think outside of the box. A platform like Reddit, not traditionally used by universities, may be a gold mine of potential students. The subreddit r/ApplyingToCollege has 82.6K subscribers. Let’s say you are on the admissions team for a school located in Kansas, a quick search of your state name on this subreddit results in a ton of engagement opportunities.
Does your school devote social media channels to your admission's department? Share your accounts in the comments below so we can follow you!