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Brand, brand, brand: how effective is yours?

Brand, brand, brand: how effective is yours?

From our 2017 National Clearing Survey, we know that being an effective brand and having a solid brand presence is vital when it comes to hitting your Clearing targets. 81% of Clearing students have already heard of the HEI they enrol with, and 69% have visited the HEI’s website before A Level Results Day. So, how can you make sure you’re the institution that students are talking about?

Think long-term

First up, you’ll need to keep long-term, brand awareness campaigns at the forefront of your strategies to ensure you’re on students’ radars throughout the whole Clearing period – not just in the weeks leading up to A Level Results Day. One of the most significant challenges for you will be keeping your leads warm and having a solid brand presence throughout the student’s long Clearing journey. Have you identified the landing pages that are working well? Do they allow users to effectively and efficiently complete the desired objective? For a little inspiration, here’s a refresher of what we learnt from Clearing last year; rewatch the webinar or check out our learnings and what we predict will be hot this year!

Get creative with your influencers

Friends are still the biggest influencer in Clearing. Based on findings from the National Clearing Survey 2017, friends were once again cited by one in five students as the most common introduction to students’ Clearing destination, and were most influential to the Direct Applicant, accounting for almost one in four of all referrals. So, why not harness the power of your institution’s influencers with shareable content? From GIFs to Snapchat Geofilters and AR lenses, developing engaging and inspiring, on-brand content will encourage current students, alumni and other stakeholder groups to share it with their friends and social networks.Where do you even begin I hear you ask? Using social influencer scoring, like that found in Natives Performance Platform, will allow you to identify your own influencers using your existing data so that you can connect and create authentic influencer campaigns.

And if you’ve already got a visual and content strategy sorted, have you thought about developing your messaging strategy? Your tone of voice as a brand needs to be spot on to help further establish your identity and resonate with your target audience. The way you portray yourself as a brand – how you write and speak – will play an essential factor in inspiring and influencing prospective students.

Don’t miss out on mobile

And lastly, if your brand is not being portrayed correctly on mobile, you’ll be missing a huge chunk of your target audience. 60% of students used a mobile device during their Clearing searches results from the National Clearing Survey found, while mobile-only searches accounted for 20%, an increase of 3% on 2016. Make sure you have dedicated tactics for mobile and a cross-device strategy to reflect the modern search behaviour of a Clearing student.

If you want to hear more about ‘being an effective brand’, get your hands on an #ASDIE18 ticket. Attendees to Natives Group’s third Annual Summit for Digital Innovation in Education will hear the latest in, and future of, student marketing trends, as well as the innovations and technologies that have transformed how brands are perceived, and how and why they should be applied to student marketing activity.

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