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Digital Marketing

Admitted to Enrolled Digital Ad

What is digital marketing?

According to HubSpot, digital marketing encompasses all marketing efforts that use an electronic device or the internet. Businesses leverage digital channels such as search engines, social media, email and websites to connect with current and prospective customers.

Another way to look at it, digital marketing refers to the process of delivering personalized information to a targeted group of individuals through online distribution channels.

What are the benefits of digital marketing?

  • Audience Targeting
  • Measurable Results
  • Personalization
  • Cost Effectiveness
  • Flexibility to adapt as needed
New Student Orientation

What platforms are used in digital marketing campaigns?

  • Search
    • Google Ads (Google Display Network)
    • Bing Advertising
  • Social
    • Facebook (FB Ads, Boosted Posts, Stories and Instagram)
    • YouTube
    • LinkedIn (Sponsored Posts and LinkedIn InMail)
    • Snapchat
    • Twitter
  • Programmatic
    • Third-Party Bidding Process
  • Streaming Radio
    • Spotify
    • Pandora
  • Email Marketing
    • Customer Relationship Management systems

Where do marketing dollars at SDState go?

Marketing Dollars breakdown graph

What exactly are the different digital campaigns referenced in the investment breakdown?

Transfer Student Digital Marketing Campaign

The transfer student digital marketing campaign is designed to find and recruit students interested in transferring from their current institution to South Dakota State University. The campaign also attracts students who are interested in pursuing four-year degrees from any of the transfer agreements SDState has with technical institutes, community colleges and other universities that provide program-to-program articulation agreements.

In-State Tuition for North Dakota Students

Admitted to enrolled digital marketing campaign

The admitted to enrolled digital marketing campaign markets to those students who have applied and been admitted to South Dakota State University. The campaign has two elements: marketing toward high-growth programs outlined in the university's strategic enrollment plan and marketing toward admitted students looking to find their path at SDState while hitting certain deadlines along the way that include financial aid, scholarships, housing and New Student Orientation. Students receive initial marketing materials—digital, print and by email—beginning as sophomores in high school through the work of EAB and the university's search campaign.

How are results of the campaign measured?

Digital marketing and big data have created an environment saturated with metrics. The challenge marketers face is not finding the data, but knowing which data is important to a campaign. Metrics are measured to track performance in both cases.

What is Rabbit Food?

Rabbit Food is SDState's marketing blog dedicated to prospective students. The blog is available online, in addition to being sent electronically to thousands of prospective students twice a month. Content for Rabbit Food is designed to assist students in navigating the process of going to college, in addition to providing information about SDState. The combination of inbound marketing (marketing designed to draw students in as a means of generating leads) and direct communications make Rabbit Food a valuable marketing resource.

Today's Student: Generation Z

Marketing campaigns must understand their audience and where they get their information. The following is information presented at the American Marketing Association Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education in November 2017.

Transfer digital ad with students walking across campus

Presenters: University of Cincinnati and LPK, a brand agency located in Cincinnati.

Generation Z are individuals born between 1997-2010. Millennials were the generation born between 1980-97.

Gen-Z prefer to interact with friends face to face and their passion can best be described as a future career. Technology is an expectation, not a luxury item. They believe that universities should prepare them for a career, allow them to design their own degree and be affordable from the standpoint of not creating too much debt. Maybe most importantly, universities should prepare them to make a difference.

Sociocultural trends matter to Gen-Z more than aesthetic trends, category trends and consumer trends. The difference between Millennials and Gen-Z is that today's students were mostly raised post 9-11 and during the worst recession since 1930s. Tragic events have been part of their social media feeds and they desire human equality. They are intuitive and on-demand.

Interesting Gen-Z statistics include:

  • 73% believe in the importance of a linguistically and racially diverse America.
  • 83% agree they should start saving for the future now.
  • $44 billion in spending power.
  • 70% watch more than two hours of YouTube content each day.
  • 85% prefer to interact with friends in person versus on social media.
  • 79% favor integrating employer internships with academic programs.
  • 64% want colleges to offer courses in founding a business.
  • 72% say colleges should allow them to design their own degree program.
  • 42% expect to work for themselves during their careers, compared to an 11% national average.
  • 72% say money would not motivate them to work harder or stay with their employer.

Gen-Z students are intuitive and on-demand. They desire human equality.

Transfer Ad with students at a computer

Social Media Trends

It is no secret that students today spend time on their phones and devices. Noel Levitz recently conducted a study on social media trends that showed high school juniors and seniors visited these sites daily:

  • Snapchat (68%)
  • Instagram (68%)
  • YouTube (61%)
  • Twitter (33%)
  • Facebook (32%)
  • Pinterest (19%)
  • No social media (6%)

The report also noted the most popular social media platforms for information on colleges:

  • Instagram (39%)
  • YouTube (38%)
  • Facebook (32%)
  • Visited college Facebook page (59%)
  • Liked a college Facebook page (64%)
  • Twitter (19%)
  • Snapchat (10%)
  • No social media (15%)