Visiting campuses in person isn't as common as it used to be. It seems virtual events are here to stay in a post-COVID world. More prospective students and their families are choosing digital experiences to get to know colleges and what they offer.
You can create virtual campus events to attract a diverse group of potential applicants and increase enrollment rates. However, you must understand how to incorporate informative and creative content into an immersive digital experience that reaches prospective students wherever they are in the world.
Here, you will find several ways to increase applications and drive enrollment with virtual campus events.
1. Promote Inclusiveness
Virtual events offer something in-person events don't: the potential for higher attendance. Whether travel costs aren't affordable or schedules are too busy, many people can't physically attend campus events. By offering virtual events, you promote inclusiveness. You reach a wider audience and allow more people to interact with your faculty, alum, and other prospective students.
Visitors from all backgrounds can participate in your college's events without leaving their homes. They have an opportunity to visit your campus from anywhere despite geographical or financial limitations. The environment is fully digital but allows access to the experiences in-person attendees get. They can listen to lectures, meet faculty, and ask questions about academic programs.
2. Allow Active Participation
The goal of a virtual event is to transform your virtual guests from quiet attendees sitting behind a computer screen to active participants. They're not only there to hear people talk. By allowing them to engage in conversations with others, you build trust. They can develop a relationship with your brand and meet people who might convince them to apply.
You can offer live streams with polls to obtain real-time feedback from your audience. The results of these polls can provide data to consider in future digital marketing efforts. Prospective students can ask questions during question-and-answer sessions and receive immediate responses during the event. Instant access to vital information gives online attendees the details they want to know about your school without waiting for a return phone call or email.
3. Provide a Personalized Experience
Prospective students don't want to feel like another number. They want a digital experience personalized to their specific needs. That means you must tailor your virtual events to attract a variety of students and pique their interests.
Instead of running a webinar for several hours, think about breaking up the event into multiple segments. Allow your online attendees to participate in sessions that interest them and skip the ones that don't.
Diverse content isn't the only important aspect of the personalized experience. You should also prepare to implement multiple formats into the virtual event. Not everyone wants to sit through a lecture or communicate with others in real time. You should offer numerous platforms attendees can choose from to accommodate their preferences.
4. Offer Ongoing Engagement
A virtual event allows prospective students to engage with other attendees in real-time. They can learn more about academic programs from faculty, meet other prospective students, and experience what campus life would be like if they enrolled.
You can approach your virtual event from a different angle to offer more than what's on the surface. Instead of providing a one-time event, visitors can return to your website anytime to view content relevant to their interests and needs. They can participate in group discussions to ask questions and obtain more information about the school.
5. Customize Follow-Up Communications
Data is valuable in digital marketing. You must use it to determine strategies you can continue using and discover which ones need tweaking. Instead of blasting out a generic email to your virtual attendees, personalize your follow-up messages based on your collected data. You build trust and stronger relationships when prospective students feel prioritized.
StudentBridge's Tech Platform provides comprehensive features to take your college's virtual experience to the next level. You can access real-time analytics to discover aspects of your virtual event you should change and what works to keep attendees engaged. The platform also allows personalization so you can update your content as your target audience's needs change.
How StudentBridge Can Help with Your Virtual Event
StudentBridge's case study shows our success in creating informative and compelling content for virtual campus events. Georgia Southern University came to us for help after COVID-19 forced campuses to close. We launched an immersive digital experience for accepted students, with videos from the admissions office, campus tours, and invitations to live Zoom sessions. Our efforts led to 15,000 visitors to the institution's website compared to only 400 in-person attendees and a 3,650 percent increase in participation.
If you want to learn more about increasing enrollment by incorporating virtual events into your digital marketing strategy, call us at (678) 824-8181 or contact us online today. You can also request a demo to see what we can do for you.