ESM Digital's Higher Ed Marketing Blog

Top 4 Paid Social Media Platforms

It’s our job to stay updated on the top social platforms and understand which social platforms are best for your school. There’s no one size fits all. And you’ll discover as you read through our top picks that each platform has its own unique strengths dependent upon your marketing objectives.

#1: Facebook is the social media giant – and with good reason; there are 1.49 billion monthly active users with 65 percent of those users on the site daily. In Q2 of last year, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that the average U.S. user spends 40 minutes per day on the site. With its continuously expanding and improving native ad formats and extensive targeting options, check out how we’ve discovered Facebook to be the best social platform for driving student lead generation.

#2: Instagram was bought by Facebook in 2012 and celebrated its 5th birthday this year. It’s quickly become the sweetheart of social media boasting over 400 million monthly active users. The social platform announced last month that it would open its doors to advertisers around the globe. A school’s investment on the platform must be significant to get an edge on the competition, but it may be worth it. Instagram is a wildly popular visual discovery platform, claiming on its site that ad recall from sponsored posts was 2.8x’s higher than other online advertising. This makes Instagram the perfect place for student engagement and awareness.

#3: Twitter has over 316 million monthly active users. Eighty percent of those users are active on mobile. Twitter began offering Promoted Tweets back in 2010 and is best known for creating conversations and getting real-time updates. Thanks to Twitter’s ability to foster dialogue, we categorize it as a useful tool for aiding school’s interaction and engagement with prospective students.

#4: Pinterest has more than 100 million users (mostly female) with 93 percent of them using the site to plan a future purchase. Pinterest – like Instagram – is a very visually-appealing platform that relies on strong, high-quality images to inspire users to make those purchases. About 5 percent of all referral traffic to websites comes from Pinterest. This makes the platform an appealing venue for student lead generation. And the majority of pins are actually re-pins, meaning the site could also perform well with regard to engagement and brand awareness.

Your student engagement and lead generation work together on social media. And luckily for you, our #HigherEdGeeks specialize in both. It’s vital to have a mix in your school’s marketing strategy to get the most out of these powerful platforms. Whether you optimize lead generation on Facebook or facilitate awareness of your school on Pinterest, we can help you ensure your custom mix is the best fit for your school’s objectives and goals.

Interested in getting your school set up for success on the social media forefront? Contact the experts here at Effective Student Marketing to partner on reaching your school’s marketing goals.

~Jackie Murtha