From nowhere, the past two years have seen the birth of global stars straight from the YouTube screen. No overt publicity, no grounding in fame culture, just average people documenting their lives via a YouTube video. The rise of the vlogger boomed.

In this post, I’ll share how you can find your own student vloggers and how to engage with them you once have found them.

The authenticity and approachable nature of vloggers has proven invaluable for influencing brand positioning and consumer behaviours. Take Zoe Suggs for example; she has more YouTube Subscribers than Beyonce, with the likes of Ebay and Microsoft advertising on her personal blog.

So how do you go about finding vloggers who are talking about your institution?

The cost that the major media companies pay for content monitoring software is beyond the reach of the average education institution, nor does a University or College meet the criteria for Google’s Content id service. And most social listening tools (here is the ultimate list – http://wiki.kenburbary.com/) focus on written content (crawling blogs, Facebook, Twitter, etc), not video/audible.

If you haven’t got the budget for more complex social listening tools, a more cost effective way is to set up Google Alerts or use free tools like Social Mention or Topsy.

You can also use advanced Boolean search techniques, combining keywords and operators, to generate deeper results.

Try these searches:

“ac.uk” OR “uk university” site:youtube.com vlogger

or

site: youtube.com “ac.uk” AND “vlog”

Dependant on the results, you might want to play around with the keywords to alter the quality of results that are generated, with the aim to find the most useful content. By clicking ‘search tools’ you can also alter the country of content, as well as the time it was posted, enabling you to always be up to date.

 

 

Now what? Outlined below are a number of ways in which you can use your student vloggers in your engagement and conversion campaigns:

1. The first question you should ask yourself is what are they saying about my institution? Are there any recurrent themes or issues that are being brought to the fore? Make sure you are creating a content plan accordingly by answering these questions and understanding how this engagement is affecting your student brand.

2. What do they want to talk about? What’s interesting to them and how can you get that topic related to the University/College?

3. Encourage students, alumni, tutors even, to post a vlog and use it to form part of ‘vlog week’ (in the YouTube world, vlog weeks are a pretty big deal). Each day, post a separate vlog on your on your Facebook and Twitter focusing on a different theme per day, whether that be student life, student study or career prospects after University/College

4. If you are lucky enough to have a well-known student vlogger at your institution (or previous student), would they be willing to host a live Q&A? Encourage prospective students to pose questions on Facebook and Twitter and ask your student vlogger to read out popular questions and answer them accordingly. The Key to any Q&A is to be prepared

5. As we have outlined, the content of these vlogs are crucial, but you can be clever with targeted advertising too. Pre-roll ads and display ads on YouTube should always form part of your conversion campaigns, as should direct remarketing to students who have already enquired/applied. Imagine the possibility of advertising your institution to somebody already watching a student vlogger discussing the importance of University/College. Priceless

Working to help over achieve the recruitment targets for over 250 Education clients, Net Natives are at the forefront of developing new and creative ideas for content that not only engages students, but leads to conversions. Employing a more innovative content plan that is inclusive of student vloggers is just one of the ways to improve the effectiveness of your conversion strategy.

If you want to know more, feel free to contact us. Or if you have anything else to add or different ideas, I’d love to know.

Article by

Holly Rich

Media Planning Manager