College Open Days – Questions You Should Be Asking Yourself


Whenever you find yourself buried up to your knees in your college’s open day marketing strategy, there are questions you should always be asking yourself along the way. Keeping track of these handy reminders will make sure you get the most out of your campaign, and ultimately drive greater numbers in your student recruitment.

Who is your target audience?

If your answer to this one is ‘young people, of course’, then we’re afraid you’re dead wrong. Focusing on the student alone is too narrow. You need to broaden your targeting to include the most important influencers in a young person’s life – their parents or guardians.

Parents want to know that their child is going somewhere safe, pleasant, and welcoming. It’s, therefore, necessary to segment your market and to address their individual needs via campaigns across all social media problems.

It’s worth noting that prospective students and their parents are probably not using the same social platforms. Even when they are, they will have very different preferences for what sort of content they consume and engage with.

There’s no point targeting parents and guardians with hip adverts full of flashing strobe lights and dance music. Instead, it’s important to have a presence that targets each variety of audience with content tailored specifically for them.

Each major social media platform offers different advantages for different demographics. Facebook’s analytics, for example, show a decline in 13-24-year-old users, but a rise in 25-55+ users. Use statistics like this when fine-tuning your marketing campaign.

Are you holding their attention?

As we’ve already alluded to, the social platforms that teenagers use most are changing. Whilst Facebook remains the most popular choice overall, other platforms may be more effective in the long run.

Snapchat is by far the most popular marketing choice, offering features such as Snapchat Stories and Swipe Up Snap Ads. They’ve also added the Geofilters feature, allowing location-based overlays to be shown to users. These are all methods that colleges can use to target young people with their open day campaigns.

But why are they so popular-and so effective-amongst the Gen Z demographic? Simply put, they really don’t like to pay attention for too long at one time. Snapchat’s short, snappy, and instantly rewarding format is perfect for them. Content that’s easy to digest is what is going to win them over, and currently, videos and images are the best offerings.

Remind them what they are missing out on 

In many cases, you’ll find that even when you convince your audience to visit your website, they might not actually register for an open day. This is when you need to wheel out your finest remarketing techniques. What is remarketing? You’re reminding these visitors just what they’re missing out on by not booking to attend the open day.

This is especially effective when used for Facebook and Google Display, whereby tailored adverts are shown to audiences as they browse, encouraging them to sign up for your open day. This is done by specific settings, which attach themselves to cookies stored on users devices.

Track and Analyse

Even after you’ve made sure that your marketing campaigns are targeting the right audiences, that you’re utilising all social media platforms appropriately, and that your content is well suited to the market, your work still isn’t done.

Throughout your campaign, you’ll find that some platforms and types of content will be more successful at attracting clicks to your website and increasing open day bookings than others.

It’s important to evaluate all of this data via analytics and on-site tracking.

As long as you’re aware of what content delivers results and what worked best for generating registrations, you can put yourself in a fantastic position for the future. Armed with this information, you can decide how to implement your next campaigns on a more knowledgeable basis.

If you’d like assistance with running your open day campaigns, please get in touch with a member of the team through our contact form.