Dr Adya Sharma, director, Symbiosis Centre for Management Studies, Pune.
The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the education sector with schools and colleges shifting to online learning since over a year now. Although several universities depend on conventional techniques, the conceivable benefits from leveraging technology driven solutions are countless.
Regardless of whether you are a student or an institution, it is important to take note of the significance of innovation in education. Amid the current circumstances, it is imperative for universities to extensively leverage technology as it helps streamline the admission process and facilitates better interaction between the stakeholders.
Technology enables universities to host online webinars and workshops which can bring in more enrolments. During the pandemic, there has been an increased demand for online degrees and mobile learning, and numerous experts have accepted tech innovations to enhance and bring in more audiences. Therefore universities need to upgrade themselves with the best technology tools and come up with newer and stronger perspectives.
Since the onset of the pandemic, the world of technology has witnessed sea changes, catalysing several innovations and new developments. The innovations have helped institutions to quickly adapt to the demands of the changing times.
During the pandemic, universities should use cost-effective technological platforms to virtually interact with counsellors, admission committee members, students and parents for smoother and clearer communication.
Technology has undeniably made communication and collaboration easier but bringing in new admissions is never easy. The competition is tough and universities need to fulfil every single requirement to reach out to aspiring students. Every marketing tactic and every potential student needs to be counted because it is important to bring in the enrolment.
Universities and institutions should tailor their promotional messages based on what draws student towards them. They need to create an emotional appeal through their marketing and communication campaigns. In the present times, with the introduction of online and distance learning courses, students have a plethora of choices and this poses a major challenge. To address this, universities need to engage the students and level up their standards with carefully designed admissions strategies.
Social media has played a vital role in reaching out to the target student audience and showcasing what a university has to offer. It helps highlight the unique aspects of a university and facilities better reach to the youth population. Universities should stay updated with the latest trends on social media because they help to tell stories and engage the students more effectively.
Marketers should remember that the process of engaging students should be smooth and simple. Making the marketing aspects complicated will slow down the transition and only deter engagement and enquiries.
Today, students visit the website for a clearer understanding of the institution/university. If the website is complex and unappealing, it lowers the chances of students exploring it further.
Universities should keep their websites informative and easy to navigate with appealing design and content. Each page of the website needs to be carefully developed and SEO friendly. An SEO friendly website can generate more engagement and reach and help to gather insightful data of the audience/visitors.
According to experts, popular assumptions suggest that student enrolments will decline in response to the pandemic situation, but pandemics can motivate students to pursue more courses and upgrade their skills to stay employable amid the looming economic crisis.
The introduction of technology can undeniably helps universities to reach out to a larger student population more efficiently.