7 Student Engagement Tactics You Haven’t Thought Of
It’s more important than ever to keep people engaged with your digital experiences. Here are 7 creative ways to do it.
As the pandemic is still looming, student engagement can be more challenging than ever. People may be feeling lots of uncertainty about what the year will look like and what comes next for higher education. Students need to be engaged and inspired by your content for you to pull them in and retain them, and that starts with digital experiences.
Here are a few strategies you may not yet have thought of to keep students and recruits engaged. But first, let’s talk about why engagement is so important, especially now.
Why is engagement so important?
The COVID-19 pandemic has had lots of repercussions for everyone. College students have been hit especially hard, with one study finding that more than 90% of college students have had some kind of negative mental health symptom because of the pandemic. Almost half struggle with isolation, anxiety, and lack of focus.
Engagement tactics can help you support and engross students once again. They need to feel like they’re part of a community to avoid feeling isolated. Exciting them with online content and building trust can help students feel more engaged, and recruits will become more intrigued by your institution and want to know more.
7 student engagement tactics you haven’t tried
Attracting and retaining students should be top-of-mind as the future remains uncertain, and engagement tactics like these will help you stay creative:
1. Use social polls
Social media platforms have changed a lot in recent years. Facebook and Instagram Story features now allow you to interact with students in new and fun ways. Try posting a poll where all people have to do is click the option of their choice. They’ll feel like you want to hear from them about a relevant topic, and you can collect data on their preferences in the meantime.
2. Post interactive content
Aside from polls, there are numerous ways to interact with your audiences online. Think about how you can get people to respond to your content. Ask them a question or tell them to give a response in the comments section under a photo or video. Include lots of links, so they can click through to learn more or visit your website. Post an infographic with lots of interesting stats and cool visuals. Take advantage of the platforms’ live streaming features, where you can host Q&A sessions in real-time with university leaders.
3. Start hashtag campaigns
You’ll boost your online presence and authority in no time when you can start meaningful conversations with your audience. Beyond asking a question or taking a poll, think of how you can get students and recruits to post their own content related to a topic you’re discussing.
Using hashtags is a great way to do it. Start a whole campaign centered around a hashtag, like #parentsweek or a phrase specific to your school. Invite followers to post a photo and use the hashtag. You can also use this tactic for whatever is happening in the news or the lives of your students or prospective students, like remote learning or the pandemic blues.
4. Create videos
According to Pew Research, 95% of people between ages 18 and 29 use YouTube. This fact mixed with the increasing popularity of TikTok shows just how important video has become to young online users.
You need to create video marketing content that inspires and excites recruits and students. Try incorporating music, graphics, or your students in the videos. People will love to see real faces of young people who love attending your school. Also, be sure you’re posting these videos on your social media channels.
Some schools have been using video to showcase virtual open houses or tours so prospective students can stay engaged from the comfort of their homes.
5. Talk about student accomplishments
Celebrating the great work that students are doing can go beyond the individual classroom (or virtual classroom). Post on your social channels or website when a student or alumni shares an accomplishment or piece of great news. Show students that you’re proud of your community and that you actively celebrate what your people are doing in the world. Other students will strive to be featured as well.
6. Use humor
Sometimes people just need a laugh, especially when there’s so much bad news out there. When appropriate, try to integrate humor into your content. Ask students to contribute their ideas. Comment on something happening in the moment. Involve students in writing your copy to keep your voice fresh and attuned to what they care about.
7. Create a better online presence
You just won’t be able to engage students effectively without focusing on your overall online presence. This means ensuring your design elements and brand voice are consistent every time you post something. You should be staying active on your social channels and keeping your blog updated each week. Your content should always be easy to digest and understand and personalized to your specific audience.
Allow KWALL to help
As we move deeper into 2022, you need to revamp your web content to keep recruits and students engaged and inspired. The team at KWALL is ready to help you create better online experiences through enhanced capabilities.
KWALL has more than 14 years of experience and launched more than 600 education websites for more than 75 colleges and universities. We’re experts in student engagement and understand how each touchpoint matters.
Contact KWALL today to get started with a site audit and learn how we can help you boost your engagement strategy.