Incredibly important to LR’s Digital Footprint, the university’s website is just one component of our digital strategy. The LR website serves as our information and transactional hub and as our most important marketing and communications vehicle.
A poor visitor experience can hurt websites in numerous ways, including turning away prospective students and donors because the website is difficult to use, doesn’t communicate our brand or isn’t set up with calls to action that request visitors’ information at the point when they are most interested in LR (aka conversions).
Another important component of a strong digital strategy is digital marketing and advertising.
Digital advertising is an effective strategy for increasing brand awareness of LR, our programs and our priorities. Instead of depending solely on prospective students finding us by visiting our website, we get our information in front of them on the websites and services they regularly visit or at the top of search results when they are looking for specific keywords.
Digital Marketing & Advertising Tactics
Digital marketing and advertising can take many forms. Included below are some examples of various tactics colleges and universities use to raise brand awareness, encourage prospective student inquiries and enrollment.
- Search Engine Optimization (SE0)
Work done to webpages to improve placement in organic search results. SEO includes a focus on technology, structure and content. Webpages that rank high in organic search results load quickly, are delivered securely (over https://), are mobile friendly, are structured properly (use page headings H1-H6), offer good content of interest to visitors and use keywords that are relevant to page audiences and search engines. SEO work is an ongoing effort that is always evolving and changing. What works today, may not work tomorrow.
- Search Engine Marketing – aka Pay Per Click Advertising
If you have used Google, Bing or Yahoo, you can’t miss the search ads that appear at the top of search results. These ads appear based on the keywords people enter in searches.
- Digital Display Ads
These are banner ads that can be found on newspaper and many other websites. They typically link people back to a website landing page encouraging visitors to complete a short request for information form or other call to action (aka conversion).
- Paid Social Media Advertising
Ads that appear in social media account feeds or stories on sites like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.
- Over the Top (OTT) Advertising
Video ads that appear on popular streaming services used by “cord cutters” like Hulu, SlingTV, DirectTV, Roku, among others.
- Streaming Audio Advertising
Audio and display ads that appear in streaming audio services like Spotify, Pandora and iHeart Radio.
LR Digital Advertising
Starting in fall 2019, LR began advertising several graduate programs that have room for growth in enrollment. This work involved redesigning academic program pages and creating advertising landing pages for visitors where we provide a short request for information (RFI) to gather inquiries from prospective students.
Included below are some samples from this work, including academic program landing webpages, digital display ads and paid social media ads. As we plan for the new website, one priority is optimizing pages for SEO and for digital display advertising.