INSIDE THE MIND OF A PROSPECTIVE STUDENT DURING COVID-19: A recent study conducted by Art & Science Group found that 1 in 6 high-school seniors who expected to attend a four-year college full-time this fall are now considering a different path, post-COVID-19 outbreak. The reason? Concerns that their first-choice school may no longer be affordable, desires to stay closer to home, and hopes of keeping a closer social network. Of those 1 in 6 students considering changing course this fall, their future plans included: taking a gap year (35%); enrolling in a part time 4-year college (35%); enrolling in a 2-year college (7%); working full-time (6%); or enrolling in a certificate/apprenticeship program (4%). Thirteen percent were unsure of their plans.
Why you should care: Prospective students are concerned about the future. Will they be able to afford college? Does taking a gap year make more sense? What about attending part time, or even enrolling in community college to stay closer to home? While you shouldn’t change your entire enrollment structure based on these findings, you should empathize with the prospective students and publish helpful resources that can help them answer these questions and address what’s inevitably running through their minds.
GOOGLE SEARCH TRENDS DURING COVID-19: Keyword searches on Google have been anything but normal lately. Moz studied relevant topics for each industry vertical to see if there was a spike in searches for relevant terms since the novel coronavirus outbreak. With schools across the board cancelling events, open houses, and in-person classes, the following keywords showed a spike in search volume in the last 2 months: homeschooling, free online courses, how to stay focused, and more.
Why you should care: Many marketers are at a loss for new content ideas. You can only write so many blog articles about COVID-19, right? Moz’s study helps uncover a few other education-related keywords that are trending light of the pandemic. While there is surely more competition for those keywords, there is also an increase in monthly searches for them, meaning ample room for marketers to get a piece of these keywords’ SEO pie.
SO YOU’VE HEARD OF TWITCH?: Twitch is an online gaming platform that is for live streaming video games and video game players. It’s rapidly growing in popularity with over 28 million unique monthly users in the United States alone. Twitch’s audience is mainly comprised of teen users, 80% of which are teen males. Now, brands, including non-profits, consumer goods, and even schools are taking notice of Twitch and running ads on the platform to reach a teenage audience with video game interests.
Why you should care: Online gaming already has an enormous audience. With more people stuck indoors, no school, and ample free time, Twitch is likely seeing a surge in users and popularity. While the audience is predominantly prospective undergraduate students, there are plenty of young adults on Twitch. Try promoting your cybersecurity program, computer science program, or even your university’s eSports team on Twitch if you’re looking for a new advertising channel.