Are microsites right for your school?

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  • @DennisKelly2 Thank you for your feedback! Good points: responsive design is definitely a top priority for any web presence and identifying and targeting personas will lead to more relevant content creation and better engagement.
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  • 1. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 1 Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 2. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 2 1) Microsites 2) Do you really need a microsite? 3) Microsite Strategy #1: An inside look at student life 4) Microsite Strategy #2: Stimulate curiosity and interest 5) Microsite Strategy #3: Foreign language international recruitment 6) Other microsites 7) Tips for Effective Microsites Overview Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 3. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 3  A microsite is essentially a mini website, functioning as an independent off-shoot of a parent site, customized for a specific purpose or market.  They are particularly useful for generating interest and excitement around a student recruitment or fundraising campaign, taking advantage of the directed focus to instantly connect with visitors in a fresh and more emotionally gratifying way.  By functioning as a stand-alone website with a unique URL, there is an opportunity for creative interaction with your chosen audience using a different tone and look than the traditional institution's. 1. Microsites Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 4. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 4  Before committing the resources to developing and maintaining a microsite, it is important to determine whether it is right for your school at this time.  Decentralizing an institution's official web presence with quirky microsites can make it harder to keep a consistent branding strategy and risks confusing users.  A good microsite provides unique content that fulfills a set purpose, with interactive components that accumulate leads, such as video, social media, games, contests or virtual tours.  Will it exist for a long or short time?  Microsites are often used for brief promotional campaigns, so searching for a specific microsite might now return you to a main site. 2. Do you really need a microsite? Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 5. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 5  One strategic decision to make when considering microsite development is the extent that it will be connected to the main page.  Some believe that the relationship between the main site and microsites should be intuitive, and there are many examples of colleges that feature an inside look at student life with content created by the students themselves.  These "for students, by students" microsites may include a live stream of student tweets and storytelling blogs, providing a platform for student self-expression and a valuable alternative perspectives of how campus life really is.  Some sites include quizzes to playfully test how much they know about the school or to help prospective students determine which majors would be the best fit for them. 3. Microsite Strategy #1: An inside look at student life Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 6. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 6  A microsite doesn't necessarily need to directly reference your brand to be effective.  An engaging microsite may aspire to create a viral movement or stimulate curiosity and ideas by asking a provocative question related to a school's program offerings.  The University of British Columbia's "rewrite the rules" campaign (with the help of rewritetherules.ca microsite) asked the community where the future of business was headed, sparking active discussions on social media channels with over 10,000 people from over 70 countries. 4. Microsite Strategy #2: Stimulate curiosity and interest Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 7. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 7  Some schools have launched microsites in the languages of hot international recruitment markets like Arabic, Portuguese and Chinese.  Although not physically on the main university server, these sites retain the look and feel of the school, with links directly to the home site to reassure prospects they're getting legitimate info.  Translations are as much or more for the parents' benefit, who often make the final decision for international student enrollment. 5. Microsite Strategy #3: Foreign language international recruitment Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 8. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 8  Microsites are often used to highlight specific programs, clubs or student services.  Some are completely integrated into the website, such as Dalhousie University's undergraduate program microsites, which are in effect richer extensions of the main site.  Concordia University has been developing an ambitious research resource that will encourage exploration of scholarly topics through a wealth of descriptive searching tools and interactive links to faculty and course information. 6. Other Microsites Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 9. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 9  There are many types of microsites but here are some general guidelines:  Have a distinctive strategy and purpose with a size and scope that fits your budget and resources to develop and maintain  Specific features should engage your audience in interactivity, including user-generated content or personalized facts and data  The site's name is a great way to generate awareness and recall  Subject matter and call-to-action should be clear, compelling and highly targeted (i.e. a small and agile but "meaty" site)  Maximize SEO for higher education by using topic-specific keywords throughout the content  Don't forget to actively promote it in marketing communications, such as emails to prospective students  Of course, your school's main website should be your priority and it would be a mistake to create new sites without addressing old and outdated content. 7. Tips for Effective Microsites Source: Higher Education Marketing – Are Microsites Right for Your School?
  • 10. Are Microsites Right for Your School? Slide 10 Questions? 1.514.312.3968 info@higher-education-marketing.com Visit our Website: Higher Education Marketing FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK FOLLOW US ON LINKEDIN FOLLOW US ON TWITTER FOLLOW US ON PINTEREST FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE+