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6 Student Recruitment Strategies for Higher Ed in 2023

Arnaud Lejand
Arnaud Lejand


As the higher education landscape continues to rapidly evolve, student recruitment processes must become more effective and efficient in order to meet the demands of an increasingly competitive industry.

According to a recent report by the National Association of College and University Business Officers, 2023 is expected to be a particularly pivotal year in terms of student recruitment strategies. In order to ensure long-term success and sustainability in higher education, institutions must prioritize recruitment efforts that engage, retain, and ultimately convert prospective students.

Here are six student recruitment strategies for higher ed in 2023 that can help institutions reach their recruitment goals

Recruitment Strategies Higher Ed picture office

Why Student Recruitment on Internet is unvoidable in 2023.

Student recruitment on the internet is an unavoidable reality for the year 2023. According to research conducted by the National Student Recruitment Institute, it is estimated that over 80% of student recruitment activities will be conducted online by 2023. This is due to the fact that more and more students are turning to the internet for their college search. The internet offers a wealth of resources for students looking to find the best college for their needs.

With highly targeted recruitment strategies, such as targeted advertising, sponsored content, and email campaigns, colleges and universities can reach the right students and get them interested in their institution. Additionally, student recruitment platforms such as CampusReel, College Confidential, and CollegeVine offer students a comprehensive overview of the college and university landscape, meaning they can easily compare schools and find the best fit for their needs.

Overall, the rise of the internet has had a significant impact on student recruitment. By 2023, it will be almost unavoidable for colleges and universities to leverage the internet to reach students and attract them to their institutions. With the right strategies, institutions can effectively recruit and engage with students, ensuring they can find the best fit for their future.

1. Increase Organic Traffic by using Improved SEO Strategies

What SEO should be your first priority

SEO should be your first priority when looking to increase organic traffic for higher ed recruitment strategies in 2023. An effective SEO strategy should focus on optimizing content and website architecture for search engine algorithms, as well as optimizing the user experience.

This means implementing keyword research and targeting, creating an easily navigable website, and making sure content is written in an SEO-friendly way. All of these strategies can help higher ed institutions reach their target audiences and improve their recruitment efforts in 2023.

screenshot Strategies Higher Ed seo

Google Search Engine in your local Area & Google my Business

Organic traffic is a key component of any website’s success, and one of the most effective ways to boost organic traffic is by using improved SEO strategies. SEO strategies can be broken down into two categories: on-page SEO and off-page SEO. On-page SEO involves optimizing the content of a website to make it more visible to search engines, while off-page SEO involves promoting website content through backlinks and social media.

By utilizing improved SEO strategies, website owners can take advantage of higher rankings in search engine results, resulting in increased organic traffic. Additionally, website owners can use a variety of techniques, such as keyword research and link building, to ensure that their website is reaching its full potential. With the right approach, website owners can ensure that their website is optimized for search engine success, which in turn can lead to more organic traffic.

Example :

seo Strategies Higher Ed on ahref

seo Strategies Higher Ed on ahref rankSource :

Social Media Organic Strategy (Instagram, Tiktok, Facebook…)

Organic social media strategy is an essential tool for student recruitment in higher education. By making use of the various social media platforms, such as Instagram, Tiktok and Facebook, institutions can increase their visibility and reach out to potential students.

In order to make the best use of social media organic strategy, institutions should focus on creating high-quality content that is tailored to each platform.

For example, Instagram is a great platform for sharing visuals, such as pictures or videos, while Facebook is a great platform for engaging with potential students in a more conversational way. In addition to creating content, institutions should also focus on optimizing their content for SEO.

By leveraging keywords, hashtags, and other SEO-friendly tactics, institutions can ensure that their content is more visible in search engine results. This will help drive more organic traffic to their website, resulting in more leads and more conversions.

Finally, institutions should also focus on building relationships with potential students on social media. By engaging with users, responding to comments and questions, and showcasing their institution’s culture, institutions can create a sense of community and connection with potential students. This will help create a more positive impression of the institution and make it more likely that potential students will

2. Increase Student Recruitment with Advertisement

As higher education institutions look to the future to recruit students, advertisement strategies such as Facebook and Instagram Ads are becoming increasingly popular. These platforms are ideal for targeting potential students, as they boast billions of users across the globe.

By creating ads that are tailored to the target audience, institutions can get the most out of their recruitment efforts. For example, universities can target ads to potential students based on their interests, location, or even their past behaviors. Additionally, ads can be designed to include student testimonials and other content that can make the institution appear more attractive to prospective students. With the right ad strategy, higher education institutions can successfully reach and engage their target audience, and increase student recruitment in 2023.

Facebook and Instagram Ads Strategy for Higher Ed

Facebook and Instagram are two of the most popular social media platforms used by students today. With more than 2 billion monthly active users, both networks offer a huge potential for higher ed institutions to reach their target audience. When used correctly, Facebook and Instagram Ads can be an effective way to reach potential students and increase student recruitment. Here are some tips to help higher ed institutions get the most out of their Facebook and Instagram Ads strategy:

1. Segment Your Audience – Make sure to segment your audience based on factors such as age, location, interests, and more. This will help you target the right people with the right message.

2. Make Your Ads Engaging – Make sure your ads are visually appealing and use catchy copy to capture the attention of your audience.

3. Utilize Targeting Options – Take advantage of the various targeting options available on Facebook and Instagram to ensure your ads reach the right people.

4. Use Retargeting – Retargeting is a great way to reach users who have already interacted with your brand. This will help you increase the chances of conversions.

5. Test Different Strategies – Try out different strategies and test which ones work best for your higher ed institution.

Higher Ed marketing teams are already crushing facebook ads. Please look at the link below to see more last ad campaigns.

facebook ads Strategies Higher Ed

Source :

Tiktok Ads Strategy for Higher Ed

TikTok has become a powerful tool for businesses and brands to reach younger audiences with their products and services. Higher education institutions are no exception to this and can benefit from leveraging TikTok Ads to increase student recruitment.

With TikTok Ads, higher ed institutions can target potential students based on their interests, geographic locations, and even the type of device they use. One effective strategy is to create a series of ads that showcase the unique aspects of your university that set it apart from other higher ed institutions.

For example, you can highlight your institution’s innovative research projects, cutting-edge teaching methods, or unique student activities. You can also use these ads to direct viewers to your institution’s website or social media accounts where they can learn more about your institution and apply for admission.

Another effective strategy is to use TikTok Ads to reach potential students who may not yet be considering higher education. By creating ads that discuss the benefits of higher education and how it can help open doors to new career opportunities, you can provide potential students with the motivation to pursue a higher education.

Finally, you can also use TikTok Ads to promote your institution’s events and activities. By creating ads that feature videos and photos of your institution’s.

tiktok ads Strategies Higher Ed

Link of the Tiktok ads library :

Google Ads Strategy for Higher Ed

Higher education institutions can leverage Google Ads to reach potential students and increase their recruitment efforts. Google Ads is a powerful tool that allows businesses to create and manage advertisements that are displayed in Google search results or various other websites.

Using Google Ads, higher education institutions can create ads that target a specific audience, such as students in a particular region or those interested in a certain type of degree or program.

Higher education institutions can also use Google Ads to create ads for events, such as open house or career fairs. Ads can be tailored to include relevant information, such as tuition costs, program offerings, and application requirements. To get started, higher education institutions can create a Google Ads account and create campaigns that target a specific audience. Institutions can also set a budget for each campaign, which will determine how much they spend on each ad.

Higher education institutions can track the success of their campaigns by monitoring the number of clicks, impressions, and conversions they receive. Google Ads also offers advanced targeting options such as in-market audiences, which allows institutions to target potential students that are actively searching for higher education programs.

In addition, Google Ads provides keyword research tools that can help higher education institutions identify the most effective keywords for their campaigns.

google ads Strategies Higher Ed

Landing page and conversion optimisation

Creating a successful student recruitment strategy for higher ed in 2023 requires a comprehensive approach that includes both traditional and digital elements. One of the key elements of any digital recruitment strategy is to ensure that your website is optimised for maximum conversion.

To achieve this, you will need to create landing pages that are optimised for both search engine visibility and to drive conversions. One way to optimise your landing pages for conversions is to ensure that there is a clear call to action (CTA) visible.

This should be placed prominently on the page, and should be easy to identify. Additionally, make sure that the CTA is relevant to the content of the page. For example, if you are promoting a scholarship program, make sure that the CTA reflects that, and encourages visitors to apply. It is also important to ensure that the page is organised in a way that allows visitors to quickly find the information that they are looking for. Use clear headlines and subheadings to break up the content, and use visuals to draw attention to the key points.

Additionally, make sure that the copy is concise and to the point. This will help to keep visitors engaged and focused.

The 3 Stages of Student Recruitment

The 3 stages of student recruitment are essential to ensure success in the recruitment process. The stages are: awareness, interest, and action. At the awareness stage, it is important to create an effective marketing campaign to reach potential students.

This can include the use of online advertising, email campaigns, social media, and other outreach strategies. By targeting the right audience and providing them with relevant, informative content, you can build an engaged community of potential students who are interested in learning more about your institution.

At the interest stage, you can use a variety of methods to showcase the advantages of your higher education institution. This can include virtual tours, student testimonials, engaging videos, and other content that emphasizes the value of your institution. This can help to convert prospective students into applicants. At the action stage, you need to ensure that prospective students complete the enrollment process.

This can include providing clear instructions and easy access to the necessary documents, as well as offering guidance to ensure that the process is streamlined and efficient. Y

ou can also provide additional support in the form of financial aid, scholarships, and other incentives to help encourage students to complete their applications.

By following these 3 stages of student recruitment, higher education institutions can increase

3. Create a trustworthy and enticing website

Creating a trustworthy and enticing website is essential for student recruitment in higher education in 2023. With the rise of digital technology, potential students will be researching their options online and your website could be the deciding factor when it comes to enrolling. To ensure your website is effective in recruitment, it must have a strong UX/UI and be tailored to the target audience.

In terms of UX/UI, make sure that your website design is modern and intuitive to navigate. Visitors should be able to find what they need quickly and easily. Ensure that your website is mobile-friendly, as more and more people are using their phone to access websites.

Additionally, use clear fonts and colors that are easy to read and understand. In terms of audience fitting, make sure that the content on your website is tailored to the target students you are trying to attract. Use language that speaks to them and highlight any features or benefits that you can offer to them.

For example, the University of Pennsylvania has a modern and well-designed website with a range of visuals, videos, and content tailored to their target audience.

Their website also has a ‘virtual tour’ feature, which allows potential students to explore the university from the comfort of their own home. This is a great example of an effective website for student recruitment. By creating a trustworthy and enticing website, you can ensure that your higher education institution is successful in student recruitment in 2023.

With the right UX/UI and content tailored to the target audience, you can make sure that your website stands out from the competition.

penn website ui ux strategies Higher Ed

Website UX/UI and Audience fiiting

The third student recruitment strategy for higher education in 2023 should be creating a trustworthy and enticing website. It is essential to provide a user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) that is effective and appealing to the target audience.

The UX should be well-designed, intuitive, and easy to use while the UI should be visually attractive, modern, and up-to-date. In order to make sure the website is UX/UI and audience fitting, here are some important points to consider:

• Make sure to use the latest design trends and technologies to create an attractive website.
• Ensure the website is highly responsive, working on all devices and browsers.
• Include relevant content that is easy to digest for potential students.
• Utilize visuals, such as images and videos, to enhance the user experience.
• Develop an engaging and interactive design to keep visitors engaged.
• Implement a clear navigation system to make it easy for users to find information.
• Utilize A/B testing to determine what works best for your target audience.
• Ensure the website is optimized for search engines to attract more visitors.
• Create a blog to keep visitors informed about new updates and events.
• Make sure the website is secure to protect the privacy of potential students.
• Leverage social media to spread the word about your website.

4. Host virtual or hybrid events

In the digital age, events are becoming increasingly popular as a way to reach potential students and create a lasting impression of your institution. With the rise of virtual and hybrid events, it’s easier than ever for universities to increase their visibility and gain new students. One of the most effective ways to do this is by hosting webinars. Webinars can be used to reach a wide audience within a short period of time and are often more cost-effective than traditional events.

By hosting webinars, higher education institutions can provide valuable insights and experiences to potential students, showcase their expertise, and engage with participants in real-time. Institutions can also invite guest speakers, such as alumni, industry experts, or representatives from partner organizations, to share their experiences and advice. In this way, webinars can be used to create a positive impression of the university and help attract new students.

For example, the University of Melbourne hosted a webinar series on their “Future of Education” program, which allowed potential students to learn more about the program and ask questions of the program’s coordinators. The University of Florida hosted a “Virtual Campus Tour” webinar, allowing prospective students to explore the university virtually and interact with current students and faculty.

Webinars can also be used to promote special offers, such as scholarships, or to host virtual information sessions for prospective students. Additionally, webinars can be used to connect with alumni and other partners, to promote research opportunities, and to create a sense of community. By investing in a webinar strategy, higher education institutions can reach a wide audience, demonstrate their expertise, and engage potential students in an interactive way. Through this, they can increase their visibility and create a positive impression, leading to more successful student recruitment.

Increase your visibilty with a Webinar Strategy

As universities seek to increase their visibility in the higher education landscape, webinars offer a great recruitment strategy for reaching a wide range of prospective students. Webinars allow universities to host virtual or hybrid events that can be streamed to a large audience and provide a platform to communicate the value of their institution and programs.

When planning a webinar, universities should consider creating engaging content that can be accessed by prospective students and their families. Content should focus on the unique aspects of the university and its programs and should include information on financial assistance, admission requirements, and extracurricular activities. Additionally, webinars should be promoted through social media channels, emails, and other digital marketing campaigns to ensure maximum reach.

Universities should also consider offering incentives to those who attend webinars, such as discounts on tuition or application fees. This can be an effective way to entice prospective students and their families to attend. Additionally, universities should look to partner with other organizations, such as alumni associations or local businesses, to help promote their webinars and increase their visibility. Finally, universities should also consider offering webinars in multiple languages and providing transcripts or other materials in multiple formats to ensure accessibility to all prospective students.

By providing webinars that are easy to access, universities can increase their visibility and engagement with prospective students and their families. Ultimately, a webinar strategy can be a great way for universities to reach more potential students and increase their recruitment efforts in 2023.

webinar strategy Higher Ed

5. Aks old Student of your Univesty video Testimonials

Student testimonials are a great way to connect with prospective students, as they provide an authentic and honest perspective of the university experience. In 2023, universities should consider utilizing the power of video testimonials from former students to attract new applicants. Video testimonials can serve as a powerful recruitment tool, as they showcase the positive experiences of former students and the impact their university education has had on their lives.

Video testimonials can also be used to show potential students the range of experiences available at the university, from academics and extracurricular activities to campus life and career opportunities. To ensure the success of a video testimonial campaign, universities need to properly plan and execute the project.

Here are a few tips for universities to consider when creating video testimonials for student recruitment:

1. Reach out to former students: Reach out to alumni who have been out of school for at least five years. This will allow them to provide a more mature, experienced perspective of their time at the university.

2. Identify the best mediums: Identify the best mediums to reach out to former students, such as social media, email, and direct mail.

3. Find the right people: Identify former students who stand out and make an impact. This could be students who achieved academic success, participated in extracurricular activities, or had a meaningful impact on the university.

4. Prepare questions: Prepare a set of questions that will get the best out of the former student’s experience, such as what they enjoyed most about the university, what they found most challenging, and what advice they would give to prospective students.

5. Ensure quality: Ensure the video testimonials are professionally produced, with good audio and video quality.

This will ensure the testimonials are of a high quality and will be effective in recruiting new students. By following these tips, universities should be able to create powerful video testimonials that will help them attract and recruit new students. Video testimonials are a great way to showcase the university’s strengths and the benefits of attending, providing potential students with an authentic and honest perspective of the university experience.

testimonials strategy Higher Ed

6. Hire a Professional Higher Education marketing agency

Recruiting students to higher education institutions is an important process that has changed significantly over the years. To ensure success in 2023, it is important to have a comprehensive strategy that aligns with the changing higher education landscape. One of the most effective tactics for recruitment for higher ed in 2023 is to work with a professional higher education marketing agency.

These agencies specialize in creating and executing effective marketing campaigns specifically designed to appeal to the target audience of a higher education institution. Working with a professional agency can provide a school with a comprehensive strategy that is designed to maximize the number of students enrolled. This strategy can include traditional and digital marketing campaigns that leverage tactics such as email marketing, content creation, website design, and pay-per-click advertising.

The professional higher education marketing agency will be able to provide the school with an in-depth analysis of the target market, a comprehensive strategy to maximize the number of students enrolled, and the resources to create and execute the campaigns.

Additionally, they will be able to provide valuable insights into the current trends in higher education recruitment and how to best use them to reach the target audience. With the help of a professional higher education marketing agency, a school can create an effective campaign that will maximize their recruitment efforts in 2023. Not only will the agency be able to provide the resources and the strategy to reach the target audience, but they can also provide valuable insights into the current trends in higher education recruitment, giving the school the ability to stay ahead of the competition.

Arnaud Lejand
Arnaud Lejand

Marketing researcher and Senior Media Buyer at Course Incubator. Arnaud has over 6 years of experience in marketing gained in agencies, Online Courses and education businesses.

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Article by
Arnaud Lejand

Marketing researcher and Senior Media Buyer at Course Incubator. Arnaud has over 6 years of experience in marketing gained in agencies, Online Courses and education businesses.

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