WHY YOU SHOULD REVAMP YOUR PROGRAM PAGES: In a study by mStoner Inc. and Chegg, 93% of teenage respondents said their No. 1 reason for visiting a college website was to find out about majors/academic programs.
Makes sense, right? But the question is: what do they find when they get there? Are prospects compelled to action by impressive and unique value propositions on your website?
Prospects are drawn in by your institutional brand, for sure, but then they drill down into their specific academic area of interest — it's your job to showcase your offerings in a way that leads to conversion (an inquiry form, an eBook download, a webinar registration, etc). Plus, your program pages are likely to rank highest from an organic search standpoint.
But the reality is most schools use boring, jargon-y, and clunky copy to describe, what we'd argue, is any school's greatest asset — its majors and programs. If you list curriculum information on your main program page, for example, are your course descriptions written in a formal tone with academic language?
What if instead you made them more digestible and compelling for your specific audience, focusing on what students will be able to take away from the class that will impact their careers? You would demonstrate to prospects that you're committed to their success and that you can help funnel them to where they want to be. Now that could really move the needle and attract high-quality applicants.
Go pay a visit to your majors and program pages and do the following for a simple, effective audit process. Then get to work crafting new copy and wowing your prospects.
- Ask yourself if they are presented in a way that would not just make sense to a 16- or 17-year-old, but compel them to take action 📫
- If you're unsure, ping your favorite kid, niece, nephew, student worker, and ask them what value (if any) they think your page delivers to their search experience 🗣️
- Reinvent your page with clear, fun, quippy, and conversion-centric copy✍️
Shameless plug 🔌 To watch FRIdeas host Zach Busekrus tweak a program page in real time, watch this FRIdeas video — FRIdeas #32: Your Majors & Programs Website Page Probably Sucks...Here’s What To Do About It.
🎁 BONUS TOPIC 🎁
COMBAT NEGATIVE PERCEPTIONS WITH CREATIVITY: A community college in North Carolina is going viral on TikTok with their fun and trendy videos highlighting their value in super organic ways. One video a couple of months ago that fought against the stigma of community colleges has drawn over a million views. In a recent video, a student dances in front of a text bubble that reads: “Why did I choose my community college to become a dental hygienist?”
The takeaway? Don't shy away from stereotypes and negative perceptions. Instead, lean into them by creating content that speaks to people's doubts, fears and insecurities and shines a light on success stories. Invite students and alumni to share their journeys honestly — in one video, a student is depicted as worrying about her decision to attend community college, and then gleefully remembering how much money she saved. Think about how you can highlight the pros of your program or institution to combat negative perceptions — get inspired by checking out Cape Fear Community College's TikTok profile.
Shameless plug 🔌 For a crash course on the value of TikTok and some tips to get started, check out this post.
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