In the digital age, higher education has undergone several changes.

Digital marketing trends in the education event space help attract and engage prospective students. Education events effortlessly drive student engagement and support enrollment strategies.

Navigating digital marketing trends in education events helps higher education institutions open a slew of expanding student outreach. Navigating digital marketing trends in education events, Edtech marketers must focus on the student base.

Educational outreach can expand to international locations and reach students worldwide without limits to online education events.

The trick is staying ahead of the game and quickly adapting to shifts!

Event promotion has become indispensable to creating memorable experiences, engaging students, and fostering lasting relationships with alumni. 

This blog will review the top digital marketing trends in the education event space. Here’s what we’ll be discussing:

  • The transformative power of online education events
  • Personalization in student outreach 
  • Video marketing for education events
  • Social media engagement and community building
  • Data Analytics and Decision-Making 
  • Virtual reality (VR) and immersive experiences
  • The future of digital marketing in education events

1. The Transformative Power of Online Education Events

Virtual events saw a sudden boom due to the upended pandemic. Many industries and the education sector have shifted to virtual events. According to Statista, 57.7% of respondent expect to increase their budget for online events.

Embracing online education events is a great way to attract and engage existing students, prospective students, and parents. With the growth of online education events, schools, and colleges can target audiences and design events with their journey in mind.

Virtual learning and online education events are here to stay with their plethora of advantages. Some of them are:

  • Event accessibility and wider reach
  • Sponsors & exhibitors gain more value
  • Lead generation increase
  • Drives conversion rates faster
  • Measure event performance through quantifiable data
  • Increase student participation

Even though onsite events provide unique advantages, such as face-to-face interactions, virtual events have made student access easier. 

2. Personalization in Student Outreach

Mass communication and generic marketing are no longer attractive to engage students. Amid the increased competition, educational institutions must add personalization for student outreach.

Enhancing student outreach through personalization can help you with targeted communication that resonates with the prospective attendees. Data-driven insights can engage and delight your prospective students, acknowledging the fact that not every student is the same. 

Students have different interests and criteria and are at different stages of the enrollment funnel. Therefore, personalization will make them feel valued and encouraged to take the next step.

Follow these best practices for data-driven personalized content creation:

  • Consistently track the same data points over time
  • Use a combination of tools and data sources
  • Focus on insights that have the most impact on content
  • Data-driven personalization is an ongoing process, so continuously refine

Therefore, to reach a generation raised with instant gratification, education marketers need to up their personalized content game.

3. Video Marketing for Education Events

As digital video viewers keep rising yearly, marketers embrace video as a promotional tool more vividly than ever. In 2022, online video marketing spending was almost 30 percent of total display ad spending worldwide. 

Captivating students with video marketing for events builds trust, encourages social shares, and effectively communicates your institute’s story. By integrating videos into your educational event, you can

  • Deliver information about your institution
  • Engage prospective students and parents
  • Enable informed decision-making

Here’s how you can promote the event through video content before, during, and after the event.

Before the event – drive registration

  • Drive student interest with event promo videos
  • Make connections with pre-event sales outreach videos

During the event – drive engagement

  • Expand your reach with live-streaming
  • Capture thoughtful leadership videos
  • Use videos at your event to promote your college 

After the event – drive action

  • Follow-up with post-event videos
  • Reuse event videos 

Below, we’ve added some examples of video engagement at educational events.

EL Education is an educational organization that conducted an award show for faculty, and the winner gave a speech that was re-shared to promote their next event.

examples of video engagement at educational events.

Source: El Education

Cambridge University shared tips for attending open-day events for existing and prospective students aspiring to enroll.

Cambridge University  examples of video engagement at educational events.

Source: Cambridge University

The University of Utah shared a behind-the-scenes video from the activity fair on TikTok to engage and attract more new and existing students.

University of Utah examples of video engagement at educational events.

Source: University of Utah

4. Social Media Engagement and Community Building

Community building and fostering engagement through social media for event marketing will help engage the audience, create brand awareness, and develop meaningful connections.

Taking an event from ideas to sell-out is no easy feat. and requires extensive planning.

Social engagement is about leveraging online platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter to maximize awareness and reach of your educational event to prospective attendees.

Here are some ideas to spice up your social media engagement:

1. Come up with a hashtag

Hashtags are a great way to bundle up conversation and information about your event and make it easy for them to understand. We recommend you choose hashtags that hold significance for the target audience and entice them to look for more information and attend the event.

2. Custom filters

Existing and prospective students would love to use custom filters and masks to post their selfies. Don’t forget to add a logo and brand colors to your filters. You can even gather this data to be used in post-event marketing.

3. Photo booth 

Add a digital photo booth at your educational event, as it will automatically add hashtags to the posts and update them on the social wall.

4. Running a contest

Create some buzz and run a contest to motivate people to share content about your event.

5. Live-tweeting

It is another great way to engage the audience who are present and those who couldn’t attend the event to share your content. Also, you can share information about speakers and attendees and use hashtags.

6. Live-streaming

Schools and colleges can also conduct live-streaming of their events. Plan and schedule, choose the right platform, and effectively promote your event on social media.

For example, the University of Virginia will host a live stream of their Memorial Tree Planting Ceremony and Plaque Dedication, shared through their university website.

University of Virginia will host a live stream

Source: University of Virginia

7. Community building

Communities are important to promote engagement, bring users closer, and attract more followers. Event communities give a sense of belonging to the prospective students and build a collective space for experience sharing.

8. Influencer collaborations

More than ever, people are looking for influencers at events as they find them more credible and trustworthy. Influencers become brand ambassadors of your school or college and share your content with their followers.

For example, Grand Canyon University hosted a meet and greet event where Will Witt was the keynote speaker and featured a book signing.

Canyon University hosted a meet and greet event

Source: Instagram

5. Data Analytics and Decision-Making

We read about it everywhere – the big term “data analytics.”

Leveraging data in education event marketing will help you uncover information that can be used to study behavior, satisfaction levels, and student experience.

It helps in data-driven marketing and performance optimization by using tools to gain valuable insights.

Data analytics plays a key role in the following ways:

  • Analysis of trends
  • Student-centric approach
  • Efficient marketing campaigns
  • Streamlining of operations
  • Improved student experience
  • Better engagement 

Data Analytics gives you the detailed information you need about prospective students to make marketing decisions. Predictive analytics will help educational institutions forecast event attendance, anticipate resource requirements, and optimize event planning.

Moreover, metrics analysis is used to evaluate the effectiveness of A/B tests for your events and help Edtech marketers focus on engagement, bounce rate, attendance rate, conversion rates, and compelling content creation.

6. Virtual Reality (VR) and Immersive Experiences

Education events are changing with virtual reality (VR) and immersive experiences.

In recent years, we have seen a tremendous increase in digitalization and use of technology in education events.

However, there is no doubt that creating VR experiences at educational events is costly and challenging.

  • For knowledge sharing – open house and workshop events

In a world where educational institutions aspire to focus more on showing than telling at their events, VR is the perfect tool to create exceptional student experiences.

Instead of keynote speakers or dull PowerPoint presentations, educational institutions can quickly bring a subject to life through a VR experience.

It will be more impactful to create a more memorable experience and engaging event experience.

  • For marketing – promote on-campus life and activities.

Creating immersive experiences with VR helps educational institutions promote on-campus life and activities.

They can even showcase classrooms and make prospective students experience lectures.

  • For immersive learning – games and contests

Besides interactive learning, VR integration can be done for games and contests. Today’s Education events are based on excitement and energy to boost students’ engagement.

You can make students experience games through VR, stimulating learning, helping them see subject matter from different points of view, and improving awareness.

The Future of Digital Marketing in Education Events

Shaping the future of education event marketing, innovative technologies such as AI-driven personalization, chatbots, and augmented reality (AR) will be the driving forces.

The strength of next-gen digital marketing in education events will be creativity to be different from the competition. AI personalization is the key to creating systems around best practices that humans can’t compete with.

As the digital advancements in AI personalization take place, it will enhance student engagement and overall learning outcomes by adapting to the changing needs of the students. 

It means each student will have a tailored learning experience that lets them achieve their goals at the speed they can learn and materials that are most convenient for them.

Chatbot power-ups will transform the future of digital marketing in education events by automating your communication process, getting a faster response to questions, and chatbot analytics from before and during the event can be a real eye-opener.

Looking to future trends, augmented reality (AR) can provide an interactive and immersive experience for students where information materializes before their eyes.

For example, students can have a campus life experience through AR or experience a day in the classroom.

Conclusion

Digital event marketing trends are continually evolving, and staying ahead of the curve is important for higher education institutions. 

As technology advances, the need to integrate the latest technologies and trends becomes imperative to increase student engagement

By embracing and navigating the education event trends, with strategic guidance from a higher education digital marketing agency, higher education institutions can ensure they lead the way and stay future-focused on the event landscape.