Though the media spend and the almighty dollar might seem the like the be-all, end-all when it comes to content marketing for colleges and universities, there's a place for organic content in your higher education marketing efforts. You just have to work smartly for the best results.
Here are some simple ways you can make your organic university marketing content more effective.
With the continued changes in how business-page content is served on platforms like Facebook, organic posts may have diminishing returns without some rejiggering of your approach. One area where organic content can still have a great deal of cachet is on your blog. There's nothing more fruitful for your search rankings than by bolstering your SEO-rich content on a regular basis by using something like a blog presence. It's about trusting your research—search traffic will tell you the topics about which you should write, so pay close attention to what they're saying.
While it doesn't work in exactly the same way as search engines, you can perform something of a social media version of SEO on your channels like Facebook and Twitter. Just like you'd check page titles and meta descriptions when overhauling your website SEO, ensure your brand has memorable usernames, definitive branding in the profile picture and bios or profile descriptions rich with applicable keywords. These small adjustments can help your organic social content rise to the surface more easily.
The most powerful tools you have at your disposal for organically gaining reach on your higher ed marketing content include shareability and authenticity. If your content is picked up on by the right influencers (typically among your student body), it can gain some new eyeballs. The best way to get this cred in the first place is to take advantage of user-generated content—to resonate with your end user, make your end user your content creator! There's an inherent trust level in a piece of content when the reader sees him or herself in it.
Just because you're not putting money behind your organic post content, doesn't mean that you don't have some natural targeting abilities. Most social platforms, for example, have some inherent targeting tools, such as hashtags, which can be used to better categorize you content for more specific audiences. Gear your content toward your likeliest engagers, and hop on hashtags that make sense to reach the optimum genders, ages, locations and interests.