TEF rankings are clearly considered significant by most, judging by actions ranging from publicising to vary degrees if Gold, to protesting and appealing if Bronze with Silver somewhere in between.
However, the data suggests that public interest and possibly that of key stakeholders faded rapidly after the initial PR. For some institutions that may represent a preferred outcome, however those riding high in the rankings it may be something to give some attention to, individually or collaboratively.
Finally, building awareness through digital content is clearly not a new concept for most modern higher education institutions, however, our research suggests that, for some institutions at least, some of the finer points of marketing through content and social media are being missed.
Our advice to these institutions would be to keep the following in mind:
- While static pages can be great for longer-term visibility, if it’s news, be sure to publish a news article, as current / recently dated content is more likely to appeal to social media users. Whichever route you take, be sure to publish *something*
- Keep your ear to the ground for upcoming “hot topics” in higher education. Consider your institution’s approach / reaction to the topic, and publish content to match, entering you into the conversation and building awareness around it
- Consider the words that interested parties are likely to be searching for in Google. Ensure these words can be found in the titles, headers and copy of your content
- Encourage students, staff and alumni to like / follow your social media accounts to increase engagement with content posted to them
- Pin important new stories to the top of social news feeds to ensure they build awareness for as long as they are relevant
- Be sure to post news to all social networks where there may be interested parties. Do not discount LinkedIn
- Be sure to post actual, clickable links to your website on Facebook
Does our analysis reflect strategies of Gold, Silver and Bronze awarded institutions respectively? Should more be done to sustain the profile of the TEF awards? Is your institution most of the opportunity?
If you would like to discuss further please get in touch.