Since the launch of LinkedIn’s University Pages in 2013, the number of schools represented on the site has gone from 200 to 25,000 in 2015. Designed as a guide for high school students choosing a university or college, University Pages have recently evolved to include services like decision boards, university rankings, field of study explorers and university finders. While called University Pages, they can be used by any university, college or post-secondary institution to market their school.
The best and biggest schools know that students want to see numbers when they are choosing their university or college. What kind of jobs will be available after grad? How many grads found work in their field of study? Where are alumni working now? With these questions in mind, LinkedIn’s University Pages let students compare schools in a way that is unmatched by typical college fairs. So, with all this information at students’ fingertips, how can you make your university or college LinkedIn page stand out?
Marketing your school on LinkedIn goes beyond just claiming your page. As with any type of online marketing, your strategy needs to be sound in order for your efforts to be effective. These are our tips for building and maintaining a strong University Page.
Maintain Alumni Relations
The secret to higher school rankings on LinkedIn relies on networking, but having alumni leave reviews and connect to your page is just one part of the puzzle.
LinkedIn’s university services are still developing, and the ranking system isn’t perfect. Currently, the University Outcome Rankings are based on schools that have high numbers of graduates who go on to find success in what are deemed to be desirable companies.
The desirable category is somewhat limited, and includes fields like design, software development and investment banking. Other fields of study or considerations like quality of teaching and class size don’t play a role in the ranking system, but these kinds of details can come through in alumni recommendations.
Your University Page also provides a way for you to stay in touch with alumni and track their success that wasn’t previously possible. With the push for data-driven career services at universities and colleges, LinkedIn’s University pages provide schools with an easy way to present alumni success rates to prospective students.
Take Advantage of Tools That Suit Your Needs
The current ranking system might work well for bigger schools with a lot of alumni representation on LinkedIn, but don’t let that discourage you if your school has a smaller student body.
For smaller institutions there are a number of tools that can help your school stand-out apart from rankings. One of these tools being the University Finder, which is extremely advantageous for schools that offer unique or niche programs. For students searching based on an area of interest or career goal, these tools have the potential to really expand your market.
LinkedIn University Pages also allow you to reach students on a global scale. You can control what information you share with certain groups, allowing you to directly target domestic or international students.
This is your chance to engage with prospective students and present your school as one worth attending. As with any social network, it’s important that you maintain a strong presence and post frequently. Make sure you’re posting engaging material that presents the academic and social benefits of your campus like annual fundraisers or unique course offerings and events to give prospects a picture of campus life.
See an example of a great LinkedIn University Page.