How To Reach Alumni Through Content Marketing
Between all the other responsibilities a university or college has to take care of, engaging with alumni can often be put on the back burner. In a study from 2010, eight out of 10 alumni felt that their alma mater did not deserve their donations because they did not feel that their school tried to connect with them, and they already paid enough to the school with their tuition. Yikes! The problem is, with busy alumni all over the world, how can you make them feel connected? The digital world now offers ample opportunity to create engaging content marketing strategies to encourage the allegiance alumni feel toward their alma mater.
Utilize Social Media
Millions use social media daily, and in Facebook’s case, over 1.5 billion do. This means there are great opportunities to get in touch with your thousands of alumni seeking to rebuild old connections and to network. LinkedIn is the perfect platform to connect, engage, and distribute information amongst your alumni network. Some schools are using it to share job postings that could be of interest to former students and share news about the exciting things their alumni are up to.
Quit Begging for Money
Think about when you receive a postcard or letter from your alma mater. Do you automatically assume they are asking for money? This is the case for thousands of alumni who, most likely, delete or throw away those emails and postcards before even opening them. The best response to this is for your school to generate engaging, personable content instead of constantly asking for money. Some ideas include posting pictures (maybe throw in some #ThrowbackThursday posts) around your campus to send your alumni down memory lane. Ask alumni what advice they would give to current freshman attending the school. Post about reunions and networking opportunities for alumni to attend. Share job openings or career advice to help further their careers. If you stop begging for money and instead do so sparingly, you may find that this will increase the amount of engagement you receive from your alumni community.
Create Relevant Blog Posts
Creating blogs about day-to-day happenings around the school isn’t going to cut it anymore when engaging alumni. Keep blog content relevant to this audience to help them stay engaged and entertained. Create blogs about ways for alumni to gain further experience in their respective fields or highlighting accomplishments of alumni in the community and their different fields. Remember that alumni ages range significantly, so speak to many ages by creating a variety of content that addresses their different lifestyles and interests. By creating relevant content, alumni will come to you in search of information regarding events and donation opportunities. Consider reaching out to alumni who have made big waves in their careers, and ask them to share some insights with current students or younger alumni.
Visuals, Infographics, & Video
Utilizing visual content is just as important as creating informative blog posts. Create and share videos, including sport highlights, alumni spotlights, and school accomplishments for shareable and engaging content. Infographics are great when presenting concise facts around a certain event or fundraiser. Photos of the campus and reunions will bring alumni back to the emotional connection they had with the school.
By engaging your alumni, the likelihood of them feeling emotionally connected will increase exponentially, also leading to increased donations and attendance at fundraising events. Establish a strong content marketing strategy to lead your alumni into remembering why their time at your university or college were some of the best years of their life.