This series of posts explore how social integration, prominent calls to action, and faculty showcases can improve the effectiveness of your college site.

Tips for effective college websites

Back to School: Tips for an Effective Higher Ed Website

Thu Sep 12, 2013

Lesson 1: Explore the Social Playground

We're teaming up with digital marketing agency, Boston Interactive for a three-part blog series to help get your higher ed website in shape for the new school year. This series of posts will cover the importance of social integration, prominent calls to action, and faculty showcasing to provide you with insight and inspiration to improve the effectiveness of your .edu site.

The importance of social media in higher education is no secret. From admissions to academics and advancement, recent studies have reported 96% of universities as using Facebook and 82% being active on Twitter. The question is no longer whether or not your school has a social presence, but how you are utilizing social media in your digital marketing to truly make an impact.

For many colleges and universities today, the connection between social media and .edu website is very limited. The two channels are kept relatively exclusive with the exception of a few footer icons linking from the main website to respective social profiles.

The key to a truly successful higher ed social media strategy is integration. Integrating social media feeds into your website pulls your audiences in and increases their engagement with your brand. It repositions your website as a central hub for all information and creates a unified, dynamic experience for your audiences across all of your digital channels.  Additionally, integration provides the opportunity to empower your digital marketing in ways otherwise not available through social media sites themselves. This includes website personalization and customization features that form deeper connections with visitors to create relevant, memorable user experiences.

Many colleges today have multiple social media profiles (admission, athletics, alumni, etc.) that speak to many different audiences. By aggregating all of your social activity into your website, you can provide site visitors a full perspective of the current happenings across your institution, creating a vibrant, dynamic online experience that increases user engagement. Provide filtering tools for users to interact with content that is meaningful and relevant to them.

Does your website currently integrate feeds from your social media activity? Let us know your thoughts on this approach and how you have successfully integrated social media into your digital marketing strategy.