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Content
Marketing
Survey
Student search habit study
Survey conducted by
Survey Overview
AUDIENCE
 Sample Size: 876 Respondents
 Age: 18-20
 Education: Last year of high
school to first or sec...
Insights
Top 5 Promotional Factors
 73.9% - Word of mouth
 50.8% - School’s website
 45.6% - Private campus visit
 43....
Insights
Site Visit Frequency
 33.3% - 2 to 4 visits
 24.6% - 5 to 10 visits
 21.0% - 0 to 1 visits
 12.9% - 10 to 20%...
Insights
Describe the most important feature you want to see?
 “I want it to look visually appealing. If
the college webs...
Insights
Top 5 Characteristics (of school)
 52.7% - Academic reputation
 51.8% - Financial aid/scholarship
 51.4% - Aca...
Insights
Top 5 Personal Influences
 84.4% - Parents
 71.0% - Friends
 34.4% - High school guidance
counselor
 33.0% - ...
Insights
Top 4 Decision Impact
 77.0% - Facebook
 19.1% - Twitter
 15.8% - University run blogs
 15.4% - Google+
Honor...
Insights
 “I found the College of William and Mary's
blog helpful and friendly at a time
when I was stressed about my col...
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Research Study College Admission Student Digital Media Habits During Post Highschool College Search

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This study was conducted to determine how students utilize digital media, including websites, & social media when researching colleges and universities to apply to for admission. It provides marketers insight into the media habits of college students, and is especially beneficial for content marketing agencies and marketing personnel within the

The study provides interesting insights for marketers related to how students shop for schools, what people and other factors influence them, what types of devices they use, and more.

Research Study College Admission Student Digital Media Habits During Post Highschool College Search

  1. 1. Content Marketing Survey Student search habit study Survey conducted by
  2. 2. Survey Overview AUDIENCE  Sample Size: 876 Respondents  Age: 18-20  Education: Last year of high school to first or second year of college  Gender: Random – even split  Ethnicity: – random  Geographic: all across the United States BREAKDOWN  45.5% Just completed high school  51.1% Male  48.9% Female  100% 18-20 years old PURPOSE:  To gain insight into the habits of college age students, in regard to how they search for colleges & ultimately arrive at their school of choice Study conducted via surveymonkey.com
  3. 3. Insights Top 5 Promotional Factors  73.9% - Word of mouth  50.8% - School’s website  45.6% - Private campus visit  43.6% - Direct mail  43.3% Rankings Significance:  Website # 2 factor in decision making process  Word of mouth #1 (social media effective here) Top 5 Website Features  87.7% - Majors & Minors  68.9% - Photos of campus  64.9% - Program descriptions  60.3% - Residence life  59.2% - Class descriptions Significance:  Important to have solid academically focused content  Imagery and campus life important (visual content)
  4. 4. Insights Site Visit Frequency  33.3% - 2 to 4 visits  24.6% - 5 to 10 visits  21.0% - 0 to 1 visits  12.9% - 10 to 20% visits  8.2% - 20 or more times Significance:  66.7% visited 5 or more times  Theory: reputation of school may have impact on # visits Quote “Varied greatly between schools. For example, I applied to Dartmouth after only visiting the website once, but I read every single page of Deep Spring's site.” Significance: Website content may be of greater importance for school’s with a less recognizable brand.
  5. 5. Insights Describe the most important feature you want to see?  “I want it to look visually appealing. If the college website doesn't look like they spent time making it appeal to prospective students, or the personality of the website doesn't match my own personality, it puts the school farther down on my list.”  “The pictures of the college should convince me and also I need day to day update of the campus news on their website.”  “An up to date 'picture' of what student life is like (classes, social media, student clubs, etc.)”  “The website should be professional looking and easy to navigate, the most important thing I think should be ability to easily access information on classes and majors.”  “social media conveying the school's spirit”  “I would say the most important feature on the website is making the school seem welcoming. Have pictures of people having fun.”  “Thorough and exciting descriptions of academic programs and courses”
  6. 6. Insights Top 5 Characteristics (of school)  52.7% - Academic reputation  51.8% - Financial aid/scholarship  51.4% - Academic programs  51.1% - Cost/tuition  42.4% - Proximity to home Significance: These are the most important topics and will typically be the first / most frequently visited pages Devices used  61.7% - Laptop PC  49.6% - Desktop PC  35% - Smartphone  26.2% - Laptop Mac  16.6% - iPad Significance:  PC is still more prevalent than Mac for laptops  Mobile devices are increasing significantly as search tools, so optimize site for mobile
  7. 7. Insights Top 5 Personal Influences  84.4% - Parents  71.0% - Friends  34.4% - High school guidance counselor  33.0% - High school teachers  29.8% - Siblings Significance: Important not to lose site of these influencers when designing university marketing strategy 56.4% Used Social Media For Search  87.2% - Facebook  28.7% - Twitter  21.1% - University run blogs  18.2% - Google+ Honorable Mention:  Instagram, Tumblr, YouTube  All visual mediums
  8. 8. Insights Top 4 Decision Impact  77.0% - Facebook  19.1% - Twitter  15.8% - University run blogs  15.4% - Google+ Honorable Mention:  Pinterest, Tumblr, YouTube  Again…all visuals Top 5 Social Media Activities  76.0% - “Likes” Facebook  45.4% - “Comment” Facebook  18.2% - “Share” Facebook  15.1% - “Retweet” Twitter  10.4% - “Photos” Instagram Significance:  Hmmm? Any recurring theme stand out?  There are those visuals appearing again with Instagram
  9. 9. Insights  “I found the College of William and Mary's blog helpful and friendly at a time when I was stressed about my college search, and this ultimately played a role in my deciding to apply to the college.”  “Their twitter account tweeted about an award that the university received for excellence in a particular field.”  “Seeing how quickly one of my colleges made a Freshmen group for accepted students was lovely and made me feel excited about that university.”  “UVA's Facebook page and blog helped me know that their Early Action decisions would be coming out early, and I was accepted.”  “An experience I can think of was when I contacted an admission contact person on Facebook and we spoke online for sometime on how to apply for Berea college.”  “Looking at the Facebook problem solving page, seeing how students work together to reduce confusion on campus and class scheduling.”  “Social media sites allowed to me get in contact with other students my age who were already enrolled at the college or thinking about it.” Quotes About Social Media
  • PinoyKulitan

    Feb. 24, 2020
  • mormonmom

    Jun. 13, 2014
  • AubraeWagner

    Aug. 5, 2013
  • erinballinger

    Jul. 11, 2013
  • agaenzle

    Jul. 9, 2013

This study was conducted to determine how students utilize digital media, including websites, & social media when researching colleges and universities to apply to for admission. It provides marketers insight into the media habits of college students, and is especially beneficial for content marketing agencies and marketing personnel within the The study provides interesting insights for marketers related to how students shop for schools, what people and other factors influence them, what types of devices they use, and more.

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